Students are more mobile than academics

In the academic year 2014/2015 more than 16.8 thousand Polish students and 6.3 thousand academics benefited from the Erasmus+ programme. Students are more mobile than academics - said Deputy Minister of Science Piotr Dardziński and reminded that the Ministry of Science wants to increase the mobility of researchers.

The functioning of Erasmus+ in Poland was discussed last week on Thursday by members of the Sejm Permanent Subcommittee for the Youth.

According to data presented by the Deputy Minister of Science Piotr Dardziński, in the academic year 2014/2015 more than 16.8 thousand Polish students went on student exchange and work placement under the Erasmus+ programme. "This is about 8.5 percent more than in the previous academic year. In the case of study trips, the increase is not large, less than 0.5 percent, but there is a significant increase in foreign work placements, which reaches 31 percent" - said Dardziński.

The most popular destinations are invariably Spain (over 2.8 thousand participants), Germany (over 2.5 thousand), Italy (more than 1.5 thousand), Portugal (more than 1.3 thousand) and France (more than 1.3 thousand). Most participants in 2015 were students of social science, business and law (nearly 33 per cent), humanities and arts (22 percent), technical sciences and courses associated with manufacturing (15 percent).

"While in the case of student exchange, it seems that the reality is quite good, we are less satisfied with the exchange of academic staff. Students are more mobile than academics" - Deputy Minister of Science and Higher Education Piotr Dardziński said last week. "We would like to increase the mobility of academic staff" - he added.

Estimates show that in the year 2014/2015 more than 6.3 thousand academics participated in Erasmus+. More than 3.7 thousand went to teach classes for students of foreign universities, 2.6 thousand went for training.

In 2015, a total of 290 higher education institutions held the Erasmus Charter for Higher Education, including 227 universities and 13 institutes conducting doctoral studies. 260 institutions submitted mobility grant applications in the Erasmus+ programme.

According to the Ministry of Science, financing agreements signed with universities in the academic year 2015/2016 provide for more than 21.2 thousand trips, including more than 15 thousand student and more than 6.2 thousand employee trips. This could mean an increase in the number of trips by 10 percent. However, data on the exchange in the year 2015/2016 will only be available in 2017.

The data released in November 2015 by the European Commission show that in the academic year 2013/14 nearly 12 thousand students came to Poland, more than 10.5 thousand to study and 1.1 thousand for traineeships. Another group were more than 3.5 thousand academics, who came to Poland, more than 2.6 to teach classes and more than 900 for training.

European Union programme Erasmus+ was launched in January 2014. It replaced several existing educational programs, including "Lifelong Learning Programme" and "Youth in Action". It will continue until 2020 and has a total budget of EUR 14.7 billion.

PAP - Science and Scholarship in Poland