In the UK, the main source of data on the number of students studying or on work placement abroad as part of their degree comes from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA). For the academic year 2015-16, institutions reported 40,635 instances of mobility to HESA, among 36,395 students, of whom 27,405 were UK domiciled students.
Figure 1: Mobile students by domicile
The 27,405 UK students who went abroad in 2015-16 represent 1.6% of all UK students in that year. Most mobilities (95%) involved undergraduate students, mainly in their second or third year of study. 3% of all 2nd and 3rd year undergraduate students had a period of mobility in 2015-16.
Figure 2: Average proportion of students going abroad in 2015/16
Participation rates amongst UK students were highest in Northern Irish institutions, followed by Scotland and Wales.
Figure 3: Proportion of students going abroad by country of HE providerNote: These figures exclude the Open University
Figure 4: Type of mobility
A majority (77%) of mobilities were to study, but one in five involved students working abroad.
Distribution of types of mobility in 2015/16
Figure 5: Mobile students by level of study
95% of all mobile students are undergraduate students.
Photo Credit: CCO Public Domain Pixabay