Foreign students on the rise in Turkish colleges

Foreign students on the rise in Turkish colleges

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Foreign students on the rise in Turkish colleges

According to the report, most of foreign students in Turkey come from neighboring nations, or countries with which Turkey has historic or cultural bonds. Hürriyet photo

A report by an Ankara-based think-tank has revealed that 26,000 foreign students are studying at Turkish universities as of 2011, indicating a significant rise from a decade ago. The increase is said to be due to the country’s growing economic reputation and increased foreign policy activity.

Most of foreign students come from neighboring nations, or countries with which Turkey has historic or cultural bonds, according to the study of the Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research (SETA). Azerbaijan topped the list with 3,540 students, followed by the Turkish Cyprus with 3,503, Turkmenistan with 2,929, Iran with 1,305 and Bulgaria with 1,231.

Most foreign students are studying on management, economics, and engineering programs, the report said, adding that 24 percent were on state scholarships and 13 percent received government funding.

Most preferred colleges
Anadolu University in Eskişehir was listed as the institution with the most international students, followed by Istanbul University, Middle East Technical University (ODTÜ), Ankara University, and Marmara University.

The report identified the main problems international students face as being language barriers, financial problems, cultural differences, and racism or discrimination.

To ease the recruitment process for international students, the report suggested that school application and visa and residence permit procedures should be facilitated. In addition, schools should have offices to help all international students, and not only those arriving under the European Union’s ERASMUS program.

The report cited a 2009 study, according to which international students number four million globally. The United States is the top destination, with China topping the list of countries sending the highest number of students abroad. Turkey ranks fifth on the second list, with 65,459 students studying abroad.

Meanwhile, the report also showed which countries receive the highest number of foreign students. The U.S., the U.K., Australia and Germany were the most popular countries for international students.
When it comes to the number of students studying abroad, China ranks top of the list with 510,842 students. Turkey has 65,459 students studying outside of Turkey. The total number of students in the world studying outside of their countries was 1 million in 1980, the number rose to 2 million in 2000 and almost 3.7 million in 2009.