The EUROSTUDENT 2005 project aims to generate and present internationally comparable indicators on the social and economic conditions of student life (students engaged in higher education). Such a comparison provides the participating EU countries with information of high relevance of educational policy. Together with the country specific surveys and analyses – the national profiles – the indicators serve to support governments in their efforts to reform education policy.
- The traditional dependence on parents and/or state support is diminishing in many EU-countries.
- In the context of international mobility, this analysis reveals housing-related barriers which deserve closer attention. Extremely high percentages of students live with their parents, especially in South-European countries. This subsistence-form of student living but also dependence on paid employment keep students immobile and thus represents a serious obstacle to studying abroad. Alongside findings on social mobility, an insight into international mobility is of major significance to the European objective of creating a European area of higher education. The current findings succeed in giving an overall picture of international student mobility in terms of groups, programmes and free-movers.
- The student financing patterns encountered clearly reflect structural differences between the countries. If we compare structural characteristics of student financing at the one end of the spectrum we find subsistence-like financing (students living with parents) and at the other near complete self-financing (over 60% of students have jobs).
The Eurostudent Report reveals other social and income-related discrepancies in educational participation within and between states in Europe. The current magnitude of these discrepancies clearly indicates a great need for action. Only very few of the reporting countries have succeeded in narrowing the equity-gap between social groups. Social discrepancies continue to limit the opportunities of free movement.
Eurostudent Report 2005
- Depending on the social make-up of the student population, the proportions of those student groups who face particular difficulties in their studies, e.g. students with children of their own or students with health impairments/disabilities, and who need special support in their studies on account of the double burden, also vary.
- When it comes to efforts to promote educational mobility in Europe, foreign language proficiency plays a major role, as do the effects of social standing on mobility. Here, too, the findings demonstrate the need for explicit action on a European level.