Portugal with the highest ever number of students in higher education


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In the previous academic year, Portugal had the highest number of students ever enrolled in higher education, the Government announced today, which also recorded an all-time high of foreign students in the system.

In a statement, the Ministry of Science, Technology and Higher Education said that 446,028 students were enrolled in Portuguese universities and polytechnics in 2022/23, an increase of 3% on the previous year.

Of the students enrolled in higher education institutions, 86,631 were in the private sector, which corresponds to 19.5% of the total. When comparing institutions, 30.5% of students were enrolled in polytechnics (135,833).

This increase in enrolled students is part of a trend that has lasted since 2015-2016 (358,450), with an accumulated growth of 24%.

Portugal also registered 74,597 foreign students, which represents 17% of the total number enrolled.

“This result reinforces the confidence that Portugal is on track to achieve its long-term qualification goals, which aim to reach an average higher education attendance rate of 60% among 20-year-olds by 2030 and to reach 50% of higher education graduates in the 30-34 age group,” says the ministry led by Elvira Fortunato.

Around “75% of the students were enrolled in initial training courses, distributed among 21,263 in higher vocational technical courses, 277,206 in bachelor’s degrees and 37,201 in integrated master’s degrees,” the statement reads.

The tutelage registers an increase in students in the 2nd and 3rd cycles, with 82,610 enrolled in master’s degrees and 25,202 in doctorates.

In terms of training areas, 22% of students are enrolled in business sciences, administration and law, 20% in engineering, manufacturing and construction and 16% in health and social protection.

Last year, around a third of students (155,082) enrolled for the first time in the 1st year, with more women than men in almost all areas of education and training.

Among foreign students, 24% (17,822) are students covered by international mobility programs, such as the Erasmus program.

In the case of foreign students enrolled for a full course of studies in Portugal, the majority come from Brazil (30%), followed by Guinea-Bissau (12%), Cape Verde (11.3%), Angola (9.3%) and France (6%).

Moti Shabi
Moti Shabi
Moti Shabi

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