European Union Students Studying in English Higher Education
09 May 2008
This study aims to identify the pathways, intentions and relevant perceptions of (non-UK) European Union (EU) students entering English higher education. It draws on longitudinal Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) data from 2002/03 to 2005/06 and from a national survey of (non-UK) EU students in English higher education institutions.
The analysis of HESA data found that:
- there is a growth in the numbers and the relative proportion of young people coming from the Baltic States, Eastern Europe and late accession countries
- business and administration studies appear to be the largest and fastest growing course, while the proportion of non-UK EU entrants to most Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects, law and languages are declining.
- the probability of a non-UK EU student staying in England to take part in further full-time study is greater than that of their remaining to work.
The survey findings were that:
- respondents choose to study in England because of its perceived strong economic climate and the reputation of English universities.
- students from Eastern European countries and the Baltic States show most awareness of financial support and tuition fee loans and are significantly more likely to have applied for a loan than students from any other region
- those who express most confidence in being able to pay back tuition fee loans are those with the highest levels of understanding of current financial mechanisms.