Newsletter issue: October 2014

Anna Esaki-Smith
Editorial Director
Education Intelligence British Council

Dear colleagues:


How do Japanese students view overseas study?


That's a pretty simple question, but the answer is nuanced and complex. Education Intelligence has analysed survey responses from 2,000 Japanese students on their perceptions of the advantages and obstacles of overseas study, and some of the findings are quite surprising. Japan's ambitious goals in internationalising its higher education sector are well known, but what is the sentiment on-the-ground?


In an upcoming report, Japan: Debunking the "inward-looking" myth, we ask Japanese students their views on English language ability, cost and employability, and how those opinions affect their desire to study overseas. We've surveyed students who want to study abroad, those who do not want to, and those who already have, so a wide spectrum of perspectives will be offered. This free report will be available on 14 November, so please check our website then for details.


Separately, we have a new Student Insight report, this one focusing on Taiwanese student decision-making and the factors that influence their overseas study choice. As you may know, our Student Insight survey has been ongoing since 2007 and has garnered over 180,000 responses from students around the world. We hope this report, as well as the one on Japan, will help inform your understanding of two important markets in Asia.


Best regards,  

Anna Esaki-Smith

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quick links

Spotlight - the latest news and views 


New research: Revelations and realities 


News alerts  


Up close and personal with... 


Did you know? 

Spotlight - the latest news and views 

Free report - Postgraduate student mobility trends to 2024 


Recruiting talented international postgraduates has become a strategic priority for institutions and governments worldwide. This special report presents a compelling picture of global student mobility by examining current trends in postgraduate mobility between significant inbound and outbound growth markets, and forecasting student flows through the next ten years. We launched the report at the second annual research forum at AIEC in Brisbane, Australia, an event attended by numerous guests from the Australia higher education sector.

Ten fast facts about Azerbaijan 


Each month,we profile a market from our Country Brief series, and provide ten engaging facts from the most current report. Canada was in the spotlight last month - this time we take a closer look at the country known as the land of fire, Azerbaijan.

New research: Revelations and realities 

New Country Brief 2014 reports are now available 


Reports on Azerbaijan, Kuwait, Mauritius, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar and South Africa are now available for purchase and download. Refreshed annually to ensure they are up-to-date and reliable, Country Briefs provide a window into a country's education system, and a wider view of society and the influences impacting the higher education sector. Content includes macro-economic and socio-economic indicators, educational expenditure, analyses of GDP, disposable income and employment by sector.

Sector report - Further education and skills: Kazakhstan 


Recognising that human capital is a basic driver of the country's innovation and increased productivity, Kazakhstan has made technical and vocational education training (TVET) a high priority. This report provides an overview of government policy, reform efforts and the institutional framework for skills delivery, and examines the market size, structure, and the quality and scale of TVET services currently available. While offering perspective and insight into the TVET system in Kazakhstan, the report highlights the challenges and opportunities for international training providers, suppliers and educators in this dynamic market. 

Student Insight - Listen to what students have to say 


Since 2011 Education Intelligence has published over 20 Student Insight country reports, which have provided an invaluable resource for institutions planning their international student recruitment strategies. Now we have updated our popular Taiwan report, which provides an invaluable perspective of the influences and motivations affecting the decision making of students in that country when considering study abroad.



News alerts  

New report highlights "worrying trends" in UK's international student recruitment 


A new Universities UK report warns that government policy is impacting the UK's competitiveness as a leading global study destination. The report, International students in higher education: the UK and its competition, uses data from the UK Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) as well as a 2014 survey of Universities UK members to assess the international competitiveness of the UK's higher education sector.


Assessment of quality becomes tricky as higher education becomes global 


As higher education becomes increasingly global and elite institutions in the UK and the US face competition from new markets, being able to assess the quality of a university is becoming ever more critical. Yet while a range of measurement tools and rankings exist, the industry is still struggling to come up with indicators that are more than proxies for quality says the Financial Times.


#Recruitment: Twitter for international education marketing, tips and insights 


There are 271 million active Twitter users the globe, up from 30 million in 2010, and this number is continuing to grow, albeit at a slower pace in the last couple of years. Importantly, 78 percent of these active Twitter users are on mobile, 77 per cent of accounts are outside the US and 45 per cent of users are aged 18-29, the age of the majority of study abroad students. With these statistics, it is inevitable that Twitter will be part of the marketing mix required to support international student recruitment drives.


Ebola forces tough travel choices for campus administrators 


Administrators are balancing campus health and safety with allowing faculty and students access to medical and humanitarian opportunities in affected West African countries.


up close and personal with...Edwin van Rest 

This month we talk with Edwin van Rest, founder and CEO of StudyPortals - the International Study Choice Platform, who reveals his penchant for the dance floor and the need to ponder the future of the world.


Edwin has always been a true believer in the value of international experience: while studying for his Masters in Industrial Engineering and Management Science at the Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands, he spent a year at Japan's Osaka University. StudyPortals helps students find and compare their fast-growing education opportunities across borders online and has rapidly developed a unique position in Europe among study seekers and universities. Edwin was awarded the EAIE Rising Star Award in 2013.

What is your favourite conference and why?
The EAIE conference - the European Association of International Education. Our primary objective when we first started StudyPortals was to create an overview of the explosive growth of study options across Europe that emerged due to the Bologna Process. Since 2012 I have been actively involved with the EAIE, and this year I was elected to be Chair of the board for Marketing and Recruitment. Apart from the hard work during the day, I also truly enjoy the social programme, and each night I pretty much end up on a full dance floor, surrounded by old and new friends.
What is your current country of interest and why?
The US. As StudyPortals now covers almost all universities in Europe, we are expanding, as our ultimate dream is to make study choices transparent, worldwide. Our priority markets are North America and Australia, with the US certainly having the largest potential. Many students are interested in studying there, but information is scattered and almost exclusively organised on a national level. Universities are professional when it comes to online recruitment, but they still have a predominantly domestic focus. Our main challenge there is to convince universities that the student market is increasingly global and therefore comparative information should be available across borders.
What is your greatest challenge?
Organisationally, the biggest challenge is selecting and training great team members that are passionate about our mission, dedicated to the success of students and universities, and can cope with a fast-growing, entrepreneurial organisation where change is constant. Conceptually, we need to continuously innovate the platform so that we remain the information source of choice for students looking to study abroad.
What keeps you up at night?
When I am not kept awake by the backlight of my laptop screen while finishing some overdue follow ups, I like to philosophise about the future of our world. I wonder how accelerating technological progress will impact our lives and those of our children. For instance, in artificial intelligence, biomedicine, cyber security and 3d modelling. I like to think about solutions or developments that we can be sure will bring sustainable positive contributions - I hope to find some success!
What's your guilty pleasure?
A great meal is probably the most tangible thing that gives me the most enjoyment and a happiness boost. I love the full experience: enjoying a nice meal in a great restaurant with good company and ideally some nice wines, beers and whiskeys too. There's a little hate surrounding all that love in my relationship with food, as I am also trying to stay fit.... Not really easy with all the travelling... somehow food beats fit most of the time!

did you know? 

...that Russia has a large and well-established higher education sector with 1,046 institutions (2012/2013), of which almost 42 percent are private.


Find out more from our brand new Country Brief 2014.