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UG still popular with Dutch and international students

Total number of students at the UG rises by 4.6%
06 November 2018
On 1 November 2018, 31,115 students were enrolled in Bachelor's and Master's degree programmes with the University of Groningen as their primary university, an increase of 4.6% compared to 2017. The total number of students enrolled at universities in the Netherlands has risen slightly more, amounting to an increase of almost 5% over 2017. The UG degree programmes at the Faculties of Behavioural and Social Sciences, Science and Engineering and Economics and Business are particularly popular. In addition, the new Campus Fryslân Faculty in Leeuwarden started with 40 students in September.

There are currently 5,988 new students registered for the propaedeutic phase and 992 new students for the Master’s phase. Since 2009 there has been a steady increase in the number of Master's students at the UG: for the 2018-2019 academic year, this number is just over 10,000.

International students from more than 120 countries


For the current academic year, 2,944 new international students have registered. There are now 7,081 students from 120 countries at the UG, constituting 22.8% (was 17.3%) of the total number of registered students. University College Groningen, Campus Fryslân and the Faculty of Behavioural and Social Sciences have the largest numbers of international students. Of the more than 7,000 international students 2,286 come from Germany. Though their numbers are rising, the increase in German students is less steep than that in other European students and non-EEA students. Great Britain (462) is again in second place, followed by Italy (354), China (350), Romania (325) and Greece, Bulgaria, Indonesia, Spain, Ireland and India, all with more than 150 students.

In addition, the number of new Dutch propaedeutic students has risen again this year. Possibly the UG's taking first place in the Higher Education Guide in the category of Best Traditional university has played a role, alongside the reduction by half of the tuition fees for first-year students on a national level.

Popular degree programmes

The fastest-growing degree programmes in terms of absolute numbers of students are the Bachelor's degree programmes in Psychology (+469) and International Business (+226). Both have applied for the introduction of fixed quotas for the 2019-2020 academic year. Other degree programmes with high intake figures are the Bachelor's degree programmes in Law, Biology and Artificial Intelligence. The Artificial Intelligence programme has also applied for the use of fixed quotas in 2019-2020.

Male to female ratio

The ratio between female and male students has undergone a slight change compared to 2016 and 2017. There are currently more women (52.1%) than men at the UG. This is mainly true for first-time registrations (54.9%). The percentage of female students is higher among international students than among Dutch students.

On growth

The UG has previously indicated that it has no ambition to grow any further than its current size overall. In parts of the University, however, such as Campus Fryslân, growth is certainly welcome. The UG may intervene if student numbers keep rising, for instance through the introduction of fixed quotas (6 in 2019) in certain degree programmes. The policy instruments with which institutions can manage international intake are limited however, as the EU guarantees the free movement of students. The long-term housing plan at least anticipates the further growth of the UG.

Last modified:18 December 2018 11.47 a.m.
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