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New Study “Mapping mobility in European higher education”

ACA is a federation of national organisations from Europe and beyond which fund and encourage international cooperation in education. ACA, their common umbrella body, is dedicated to furthering innovation and internationalisation in higher education. It pursues this aim by a wide range of activities, among them studies, evaluations and publications, international conferences and seminars, networking between its members and with important government and civil society organisations, as well as advocacy.

         Mapping mobility is a sequel to ACA’s landmark EURODATA study of 2006. Like EURODATA, it provides an in-depth and up-to-date account of student mobility into, out of and between 32 European countries. Importantly, it makes a distinction between foreign-nationality and genuinely mobile students, and between study for a whole degree (diploma mobility) and temporary (credit) mobility. The study also tracks the efforts of the international data collectors OECD, UNESCO and EUROSTAT in terms of differentiation and quality of mobility data, and it sums up the globally available knowledge on staff mobility. Next to providing an overview on all of these issues, the study includes in-depth case studies of 11 European countries. More than half of all foreign students worldwide are enrolled in Europe. Over the past nine years, their overall number has risen by over 80%, to more than 1.5 million. The main growth has been with non-European source countries, particularly in Asia. But about one quarter of these students have not been mobile – they lived already in their country of study, even though they held a foreign passport. And numbers of foreign students differ radically between European destinations. They are very high in Cyprus, the UK, Switzerland and Austria – but very low in Poland and Slovenia, for example. Outflows are also unevenly distributed – and go mainly to other European countries. Less than 15% of European study abroad students leave their own continent.

          Following on to the electronic publication, Mapping mobility will appear in book form in December of 2011, in the series Dok&Mat of ACA member DAAD. This publication will be available free of charge. Electronic publication of study is available on the following link



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