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1st Aug 2014

Five for Friday

We are pleased to present the latest instalment in our occasional column “Five for Friday.” The following is a quick hit-list of some of the more eye-catching and varied items that we’ve been reading lately, and we present them here for your end-of-week reading pleasure.

Another record-breaking year for Erasmus

The latest Erasmus statistics released by the European Commission reveal that nearly 270,000 students - a new record - benefitted from EU grants to study or train abroad in 2012/13. While studying at another university continues to be the most popular choice, one in five students (55,000) opted for Erasmus job placements in companies. In total, 3,388 higher education institutions sent students on mobility exchanges, an increase of 6% on the previous year. Spain sent out the most Erasmus students for both studies and placements (39,249), followed by France (35,311) and Germany (34,891). Spain was also the most popular destination country with 40,202 incoming students, followed by Germany (30,368) and France (29,293). The UK hosted almost twice as many students (27,182) as it sent abroad (14,572). More than 52,600 academic and administrative staff received funding from Erasmus to teach or train abroad, and approximately 500 staff from businesses - an increase of more than 20% from the previous year – also received Erasmus support to teach at higher education institutions abroad, highlighting the growing interest in aligning education and training to the needs of the labour market.

Destination to watch: Kyoto, Japan

“Tokyo might be the best place to live, but Kyoto is the best place to study,” said Hsin Shih, a 25-year old student from Vancouver, Canada. The New York Times reports that a growing number of international students are choosing to study in Kyoto, Japan. With over 50 colleges and universities in and around the city, there is plenty on offer, and locals are working hard to entice foreigners: "The city has introduced partial subsidies for international student health insurance, facilitated housing and offered to serve as guarantor, and provided opportunities for international students to present their cultures to children at local elementary schools." Statistics from an inter-university body in Kyoto show that in 2009, there were 5,157 foreign students in the city. Last year, that number rose to 7,017 - a 36% increase, despite the fact that the total number of international students in Japan fell from a peak of 141,000 in 2010 to 135,000. Growth targets are strong: “Our plan is to raise the number [7,017] to 10,000 by 2017,” declared Daisaku Kadokawa, the city’s mayor and former head of its municipal education board.

New heights for Nepal

Interest in studying abroad reached an all-time high in 2013/14 with a total of 28,126 students obtaining a No Objection Certificate (NOC), which students need to enrol in universities abroad (except India). “Over 80% of the students receiving NOC go abroad,” said Prakash Maharjan, the Under Secretary at the Scholarship Division of the Education Ministry. New data from the Ministry of Education revealed that 11,184 NOCs were for Australia, 7,933 for Japan, 1,456 for the US, and 1,190 for Malaysia. Numbers are up thanks to Streamlined Visa Processing (SVP), as well as building interest in Japan and Malaysia. These latest figures reflect an encouraging rebound from recent years and are more in line with those seen in 2009/10/11. For more on Nepal as a sending market, please see our Market Snapshot.

5 trends in higher education around the world

Euromonitor highlighted several global trends in higher education, such as:

  • the increased global enrolment of higher education students from 163 million in 2008 to 199 million in 2013;
  • there are more female (98.6 million) than male students (95.1 million) in higher education;
  • STEM enrolment is weak - 33.4% of all 2013 graduates in developed markets studied social sciences, business and law, compared to 8.7% in science and 11.8% in engineering manufacturing and construction;
  • the number of private higher education institutions continues to climb;
  • spending on higher education (by both governments and consumers) is rising steeply in many markets, such as Indonesia, Argentina, Guatemala, and Brazil.

Mobile marketing

We'll sign off for the week with a fun infographic from Text Marketer, which is chock full of stats on mobile usage and offers seven reasons for you to go mobile:

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