The trends highlighted by UK NARIC last year seem to be continuing.
The latest figures from UK NARIC and UK NCP confirm that the trend for increased mobility of citizens from Spain, Portugal, Italy and Greece and that the UK is experiencing an increase in the number of people expressing an interest in coming to the UK to work, practice or study.
|UK NARIC Assessments|
|Country||2009 assmts||2009 rank||2010 assmts||2010 rank||2011 assmts||2011 rank||2012 assmts||2012 rank|
|UK NCP Enquiries|
|Country||2009 enqs||% of total||2010 enqs||% of total||2011 enqs||% of total||2012 enqs||% of total|
Figures for 2009 for UK NCP are unavailable.
The data from UK NARIC and UK NCP show that there have been significant increases in assessments and enquiries:
|Country||UK NARIC% change2009 – 12||UK NCP% change2010 – 12|
|Greece||+ 158%||+ 112%|
|Italy||+ 45%||+ 95%|
|Portugal||+ 72%||+ 120%|
|Spain||+ 141%||+ 300%|
The increases experienced by these countries far outstrips the performance of any other countries in the region.
Based on figures from 2009, 2010 and 2011 we have been able to model the demand for UK NARIC assessments in 2013. The figures below are based on real application figures for the first quarter of 2013:
|UK NARIC Assessments|
|Country||Jan 2013||Feb 2013||Mar 2013||Total||2013 Total Projected||2013 Projected v 2012 Real|
Data from UK NARIC and UK NCP shows that there has been a considerable increase in the number of assessments and enquiries from Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain. While this data does not definitely mean that the individuals submitting these requests do actually come to the UK to work, study or practice, there is a definite link between them.
The increases from Spain and Greece have been particularly noticeable and these may well be linked to the economic difficulties that these countries have been experiencing.
Whatever the reason, it does mean that employers, universities, colleges and professional bodies have a wider pool of highly qualified and highly talented individuals available to choose from.
Tim Buttress, June 2013
Turkey is situated at the crossroads of Europe and Asia. Bordered by eight countries, Turkey is a major regional power and is becoming increasingly integrated with the West through its membership of NATO, the Council of Europe and the G-20.
Turkey is a candidate country for EU membership: it began full membership negotiations with the European Union in 2005, having been an associate member of the European Economic Community since 1963 and having joined the EU Customs Union in 1995.
Closer ties with the EU, which may or may not lead to membership, are driving educational redevelopment in many forms, including a qualification structure, professional qualification recognition and VET reform. Turkey has also been heavily involved with the Lifelong Learning Programme, and it has been estimated that, between 2007-13, almost 250,000 Turks will have benefitted from EU education and training programmes.
However, it still retains close ties with the Middle East, the Turkic States of Central Asia and African countries. The population is roughly 80 million, with a relatively young age profile: 26.6% are under 15 years old (as a comparison, 18% of the UK population is below 15).
In the last decade, Turkey has enjoyed robust economic growth, per capita GDP rising more than fourfold (in 2011, for instance, the growth figure stood at 8.8%). At the time of writing, Turkey is the world’s 16th and Europe’s 6th biggest economy.
UK NARIC data
Turkey has been one of the most popular country files on the International Comparisons database in recent years. In 2011, Turkey received 9,921 views. This figure represents a 3.2% fall on the 2010 figure (10,240), but is an increase on 2009 (9,778).
“The figures for Turkey are intriguing. We see a lot of traffic to the relevant pages on International Comparisons and we get a lot of individuals coming to us with Turkish qualifications; but there aren’t that many applications coming through UCAS. The most recent figures show that there were only 450 applications and the country doesn’t feature in their top 50 countries.” commented Tim Buttress, Deputy Director Policy and Communications at UK NARIC.
Visa data may demonstrate why. According to the UED (Association of International Education Counsellors, in Turkey), there are now more than 55,000 Turkish nationals studying abroad, with 55% of these relating to language courses. English language courses in the UK have always been particularly popular (and likewise constitute the bulk of visa applications), although recent visa restrictions and costs have led to an increase in interest in other study destinations such as Malta.
Traditionally at higher education level, the most popular destination is the USA. According to UNESCO, Germany, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria and the UK make up the rest of the top five study destinations.
Higher Education in Turkey
The higher education sector is currently experiencing considerable expansion. There are now roughly 170 universities, about 75 of which are run by private foundations. In terms of student numbers, there are now more than 2 million higher education students, of which more than 1 million are in undergraduate programmes and ½ million are in higher vocational schools. Only 9% of students are enrolled at the private, foundation universities, indicating the increased specialisation of these institutions.
An increasing global view and focus on quality assurance within higher education is beginning to pay dividends too: in terms of reputation, Middle East Technical University featured in the top 100 ranked universities in the 2012 THE study.
Nonetheless, this provision does not meet domestic demand for education and helps to explain the high numbers of students seeking to travel abroad to study each year. In 2009, for instance, 1.65 million university applications were made, but places for only 330,000 (20%) were available.
Turkey as an International Student Destination
Turkey is itself fast becoming an established destination country for international students. Statistics from the ÖSYM (Student Selection and Placement Center) show that there were 16,000 international students at Turkish universities in 2005-06 and that the number had increased to almost 27,000 by the 2010-11 academic year.
The admission of more foreign students has been stimulated by a governmental drive to play a greater role in the Islamic world, with offers of low tuition fees and generous scholarships. Additionally, in 2010, TUPA (Turkish Universities Promotion Agency) was formed to promote Turkish universities across the world and to attract international students. The Foreign Economic Relations Board’s (DEK) Business Education Council aims to increase the number of international students to 100,000 by 2015.
|Other language(s)||Kurdish and other minority languages|
|Population (world ranking)||17 (Jan-12)|
|GDP (purchasing power parity)||$ 1,053,000,000,000 (Jan-11)|
|GDP (per capita world ranking)||107 (Jan-11)|
|Compulsory education||Eight years, covering primary and basic education (ages 6 to 14). However, see Education Reforms below.|
|Academic year||School begins in late September and extends through to early June, with some variations between urban and rural areas. Universities usually organise the academic year into two semesters, usually between October – January and between March – July.|
|Education laws||New “4+4+4” Bill, proposing an extension of compulsory school education to 12 years and a reintroduction of more progression pathways at ‘middle school’ level – which has proved controversial as it will re-open progression at age 10 into imam hatip (religious-oriented) middle schools.|
|Total (foreign students)||47,275 (2009)|
|Percentage of world total||1.4% (2009)|
|Top Destinations||USA (12,612), Australia (7,648), France (5,803), Russian Fed. (3,518), Japan (2,895) – 2009|
|UK NARIC Data|
|Number of Member Enquiries 2011||73|
|Member Enquiries 2011 rank||48th|
|Number of Individual Assessments 2011||237|
|Individual Assessments 2011 rank||32nd|
|Number of database page views 2011||9,921|
|Database page views 2011 rank||24th|
|Number of database page views 2010||10,240|
|Database page views 2010 rank||25th|
As Erasmus Mundus Programmes and joint programmes in general are increasingly gaining popularity, several projects and initiatives have been launched to explore solutions to the common problems associated with joint degree offerings: accreditation and recognition.
Through our partnership in the JOQAR Project (Joint programmes: Quality Assurance and Recognition), UK NARIC is actively involved in the on-going work that aims to facilitate joint degrees in these two areas.
JOQAR (2010 -2013) plans to achieve its aims by developing multilateral recognition agreements between accreditation bodies; establishing a European Coordination point for external quality assurance and accreditation; raising awareness about the ENIC-NARIC network’s expectations regarding the design of the degree and the content of the Diploma Supplement.
In the scope of the project, the JOQAR Recognition Team is currently developing a set of guidelines for higher education institutions that will provide recommendations and examples of good practice regarding the award of the degree certificates and the Diploma Supplements to graduates of joint programmes.
UK NARIC will present the findings and the intermediate outcomes of the project during the three Bologna Regional Workshops organised by the British Council in October-December 2012.
For further information on JOQAR project please visit the project website.
Tim Buttress, September 2012
Further to the Application Trends from Western Europe, there are some interesting statistics which highlight the same points from the membership enquiries we receive.
Universities and Colleges make up over 66% of UK NARIC’s membership. Whilst the number of enquiries UK NARIC receives from members is significantly lower, it does give a stronger indication of the spread of applications being received. The following two tables show how enquiries from Western Europe have changed over the past three years:
|Country||2008 assmts||2008 rank||2009 assmts||2009 rank||2010 assmts||2010 rank||2011 assmts||2011 rank|
|W. Europe Total||2,576||2,859||+ 11%|
2008 Figures are not currently available.
The membership enquiry and individual application figures from UK NARIC support reports that the economic troubles in certain countries within the Euro-zone mean that well qualified individuals are increasingly coming to the UK to work and / or study.
Those wishing to come to the UK to work, study or practice might find the following pages detailing how UK NARIC can help in Spanish, Italian, French, German, Romanian, Polish, Czech, Russian and Turkish useful. An English version of the page is also available.
Tim Buttress, August 2012 (updated June 2013)