Post-secondary student numbers drop, tertiary increase in 2016-17

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Student enrolments in post-secondary and tertiary institutions in the academic year of 2016-2017 on total slightly dropped to 24,619, according to the Malta National Statistics Office (NSO) press release. While post-secondary dropped, however, tertiary grew in year on year terms during the academic year.

Focusing only on post-secondary level, the number of students enrolled in sixth forms and other institutions dropped by a year on year 7% to 10,194 during the academic year 2016-2017.

The largest proportion (88.8%) was aged between 15 and 19. Foreign students enrolled amounted to 667, accounting for 6.5% of the total.

The vast majority of enrolments (88.6%) was in institutions controlled by the government. Those enrolled in vocational institutions accounted for 47.2% of total students at this level.

The most popular field of study among vocational students was “Services” (18.9%), closely followed by “Engineering, manufacturing and construction” (18.1%) and “Information and Communication Technologies” (15.5%). Courses followed within “Services” included tourism-related courses.

Tertiary-level sees growth

Based on students enrolled in tertiary-level courses, the total number during the academic year 2016-2017 was 14,425, showing an increase of 4.8% compared to the previous academic year, as the NSO press statement figures show.

Female students were in the majority (55.9%), while almost three-quarters of the total student population at this level (73.5%) were studying on a full-time basis.

Nevertheless, part-time enrolments showed an increase of 14.3% over 2015-2016. The largest proportion of tertiary students (57.9%) was engaged in courses at the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) level 6 – Bachelor’s or equivalent. This proportion was followed by enrolments at ISCED level 7 (Master’s or equivalent), with a percentage of 29.4%.

Most tertiary students (46.7%) were aged between 20 and 24, followed by those under 20 years (21.6%). Moreover, female students outnumbered their male counterparts at almost all ISCED levels of tertiary education.

At the same time, foreign students totalled 1,204, accounting for 8.3% of tertiary level enrolments, showing an increase of 16.7% over the previous academic year.

Furthermore, at the tertiary level, the most popular fields of study emerged as “Business, administration and law” with 3,857 students and “Health and welfare” (2,802). In total, these two fields of study accounted for around 46% of tertiary-level enrolments in 2016-2017.

The full report including charts and visual representation of data is available for download at the website of NSO.