Applicants flock to autumn courses
The number of applicants to this autumn’s courses at Sweden’s colleges and universities is set to break records. The same trend can be seen at Linköping University (LiU), where the number of first-choice applicants to the civil engineering programmes has increased by 11 percent compared to last autumn.
This is according to the latest statistics from Verket för högskoleservice, VHS. A total of 40,410 people have applied to LiU. The corresponding figure from last year was 39,452, so there is an increase of just under a thousand.
“It’s looking very good; we have seen an increase for most of our programmes. It is gratifying that there is such a significant increase for the civil engineering programmes, they are the core of the Institute of Technology’s courses,” says administrative director Per Larsson.
He also highlights the Air Traffic Logistics programme, which has a large number of first-choice applicants – 189 for 60 places.
The majority of the university engineer programmes have seen a rise in applicants, as has the Graphic Design and Communication course, where there are six first-choice applicants per place.
But despite the overall increase it is proving difficult to fill the places on the civil engineering programmes in Norrköping.
“We want many more applicants there, these are good courses so we are going to focus our efforts on them,” says Per Larsson.
The applications to the programmes at the Faculty of Health Sciences have increased by 16 percent, including growing interest in the Nursing programme. The medical programme and the physiotherapy programme are two of the most sought-after courses at the entire university. The physiotherapy programme has more than eight applicants per place, while for the medical programme the corresponding figure is almost six first-choice applicants.
“The applicant figures are positive, especially the increase in the number of applicants to our nursing programme. It is also gratifying that the physiotherapy and medical programmes have maintained their popularity,” comments Anette Philipsson, administrative director at the Faculty of Health Sciences.
At the Faculty of Arts and Sciences the occupational programmes for psychologists, social workers and civil engineers continue to be in high demand and the number of applicants has risen this year. The civil engineering programme at LiU is the most popular of its kind in Sweden, both in terms of first-choice applicants and total applicants.
Another programme that has received a surge in interest is the Applied Systems programme. The number of applicants for its bachelor’s programme has increased in a year from 117 to 233, and there is a similar situation for the Master’s level. Another Swedish Master’s programme that has increased its applicant figures is what was previously known as Policy Analysis, but has now been reworked and renamed Political Science. In the space of a year the number of applicants has gone from 9 to 29.
Overall the number of first-choice applicants for the faculty’s programmes has increased by around 17 percent.
“The figures generally look good. We can fill our programmes, but would like to see more applicants for the Cultural Science programme, Social and Cultural Analysis and the Tourism programme,” says Staffan Wahlström, administrative director at the Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
In the educational sciences, which include the teaching programmes, the number of applicants has increased by seven percent compared to autumn 2011. The preschool teacher, youth centre teacher and preschool- and junior school teacher courses have attracted the most applicants. The number of applicants for the vocational teacher programme has risen sharply, and there is also great interest in the remedial teacher programme. However, there is not as much interest in the courses for elementary year 4-6 teachers, or specialist teachers for years 7-9.
“In general we are pleasantly surprised by the number of applicants and that they have increased compared to last year,” comments Samuel Zethson, controller at the central administration for Educational Sciences, KFU.
The total number of applicants to all universities and colleges is almost 358,000, a new record according to VHS. The corresponding figure for autumn 2011 was around 346,000.
Photo: Göran Billeson
Last updated: 2013-12-10