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Study abroad scholarship entices more students abroad

January 25, 2012
Around 4,000 students have used the study abroad scholarship scheme to avail of a study abroad period or take an entire Master’s education abroad. The higher education minister looks forward to even more students heading abroad as part of their studies.

When the study abroad scholarship scheme was established in 2008, the government decided that the scheme should be evaluated in the 2010/2011 parliamentary year. The evaluation was recently sent to the parliament.

The evaluation shows that following the introduction of the scheme more students are availing of study abroad periods and more are taking an entire Master's education abroad.

The students highlight greater academic knowledge, better language skills and career possibilities in Denmark and abroad as reasons for making use of the scheme.

Higher Education Minister Morten Østergaard emphasises that students' experience abroad can contribute to improving Denmark's research, knowledge, production and cooperation with other countries – and will help make internationalisation a reality for all Danish students.

– The evaluation shows that the study abroad scholarship is a complete success. Students are delighted with the scheme and it contributes positively to encouraging more to travel in connection with their studies. The study abroad scholarship is instrumental in providing the Danish labour market with competences that are otherwise not developed in the Danish education system. Primarily university students avail of the scheme, but it is the government's objective that even more students travel abroad, including those from academies of professional higher education and university colleges. We must better inform about the opportunities of going abroad and make an effort to respond to potential barriers that arise, says Morten Østergaard.

Students highlight the possibility of taking a one-year Master's or a Master's degree that isn't available in Denmark as reasons for using the scholarship. They are particularly delighted with the opportunity to study at overseas universities and many return to Denmark after completion of their studies or expect to do so.

Numbers availing of study abroad scholarship

In 2009/2010, 961 students studied abroad via the scholarship scheme. Those 961 accounted for about 15 per cent of all students studying abroad. In 2010/2011, the number of students studying abroad via the scheme increased to 1,235.

In 2010/2011, 364 students utilised the scheme to avail of a full Master's degree programme, which accounted for about 30 per cent of all students studying for a full Master's at a foreign institution with support from a Danish education grant.

At least 40 per cent of those 364 students studied at a top international university.

Of the 1,235 students who availed of a study abroad period with the scholarship in 2010/2011, 88 per cent were university students. And of those studying for a full Master's degree, 84 per cent already had a university education.

Facts on the study abroad scholarship scheme

The study abroad scholarship scheme came into effect on 1 July 2008 and is regulated by the SU Act. Via the scheme, students entitled to a Danish education grant (SU) can apply for taximeter funds to fully or partially cover their education fees abroad.

The study abroad scholarship can be sought for a course that awards credits as part of a Danish higher education at university college, professional bachelor, bachelor or master's level; or for a full Master's programme of up to two years. The scholarship can be divided into smaller periods, but covers a maximum of 120 ECTS credits.

For further information please contact:

Press officer Ingeborg Nielsen, tel: +45 2211 0200.
Special adviser Stine Albeck Seizberg, tel: +45 7231 8632.

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