International degree students up in Ireland

05, February, 2015


The number of international students on degree programmes in Ireland increased in 2013/14 with a 30 per cent rise recorded at undergraduate level, according to data released by the country’s Higher Education Authority.


The Higher Education Authority released data on international students pursuing degrees in Ireland in 2013/14


There were 12,022 international students at state-funded universities, colleges or institutes of technology studying on undergraduate programmes in 2013/14, a 30.8 per cent rise compared with the previous year.

The USA was the largest source market with 2,573 students, a 35 per cent increase compared with the previous year. Malaysia was the next largest supplier with 1,398 students (up 17 per cent). The top five was completed by the UK, Canada and China – all of which increased.

There were also substantial increases from Brazil, which jumped from 16 students to 799 through Ireland’s participation in the Science Without Borders scholarship scheme, and Saudi Arabia, another outbound market fuelled by government funding.

At postgraduate level there was a 12.9 per cent increase to 4,488 international students. At this level, China was the largest source country with 766 students – an increase of eight per cent – followed by the USA and India.

The HEA statistics cover the seven universities, six teaching colleges and 14 institutes of technology.

Last year, Emerald Cultural Institute announced a partnership with the 3U Partnership of universities to provide pathway programmes into Dublin City University and the National University of Ireland Maynooth as part of a drive to increase the number of international students at higher education level.

In a recent feature in Study Travel Magazine examining higher education trends in Ireland and recruitment strategies used by Irish institutions, Mary Fenton, Head of 3U Pathway Programmes, said the 3U Partnership was working to address the relatively low global recognition of Ireland as a higher education study travel destination.

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