In 2014 the number of tertiary education graduates slightly decreased
In 2014, 18,400 graduates completed tertiary education; the number decreased slightly compared to 2013 (when 18,774 students graduated). 2,200 graduates completed their studies at higher vocational colleges. 12,600 graduates gained their higher professional or higher academic diploma, while 3,609 students completed higher postgraduate education, 669 of them gained the doctor of science degree.
The majority of graduates in the field of social sciences
As in the previous year, 35% of all graduates completed their study in the field of Social sciences, business and law. 16% of graduates gained their diploma in the field of Engineering, manufacturing and construction and another 10% in the field of Science. Social sciences are traditionally more appealing to female population. Two out of three female graduates graduated either from a programme in the field of Social sciences, business and law, Education or Humanities and arts. Science and Technology, on the other hand, remained mainly ‘male field’ in 2014, as less than a third of all graduates in these fields were female.
Graduates from higher undergraduate studies younger than 10 years ago
In the last ten years the age distribution of undergraduate education graduates has changed significantly. In 2004 more than a half of higher academic and higher professional education graduates were between 25 and 29 years of age and less than one in five were younger. In 2014 the share of younger graduates increased to 40% and the share of graduates between 25 and 29 years of age decreased to 39%. Lower age at graduation is the result of the Bologna reform, which has shortened undergraduate study programmes and limited the duration of the right for students to study full-time.
Yet another result of the Bologna reform is the increasing interest of 1st (Bologna) cycle graduates to continue their education at the master level (2nd Bologna cycle) to obtain education comparable to previous (‘non-Bologna’) higher academic education. But even if we include master (2nd Bologna cycle) graduates, the changes in the age distribution through the years stay similar – 36% of 1st and 2nd cycle graduates were younger than 25 years and 42% were between 25 and 29 years of age.
The share of graduates older than 40 years has decreased in the last ten years from 9% in 2004 to 5% in 2014.