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International students give Umeå University top marks for satisfaction

Press release -

International students give Umeå University top marks for satisfaction

Umeå University has been ranked first in Sweden and third in Europe for student satisfaction according to the International Student Barometer (ISB). The survey was responded by international students from 193 universities throughout the world during the autumn of 2012.

This is the second consecutive year in which Umeå University received the top overall satisfaction ranking in Sweden by international students.

"It is absolutely wonderful that Umeå University has placed so high in the survey," says Anders Fällström, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Umeå University. "We are working actively to increase the number of international students and it is essential for us that the students currently at our university are truly satisfied.”

Umeå University had the highest overall average rating in Sweden when factoring all questions in the ISB 2012 Autumn Wave survey, which can be seen as the most accurate indicator of overall student satisfaction. There was another individual question in the survey in which respondents were asked to rate their overall experience before seeing any elements.

Global top in living, support and learning
Umeå University placed in the global top ten when averaging the all elements in the main categories of learning, living and support. Among the 9 participating higher educational institutions in Sweden, Umeå University received the highest marks in 17 sub-categories, including physical library, laboratories, international office, accommodation office, and good contacts.

Ranked 1st in the world for sport facilities and support staff
When measured against all 193 participating institutions, Umeå University was
in the top ten in a total of 24 sub-categories, including being ranked first for
its sport facilities and support staff helpfulness. Campus environment and
internet access received a second place ranking in the entire global survey.

“We have received high rankings in the survey for four years in a row,” explains Per A Nilsson, Director of the International Office. “Last year, we were the highest ranked university in Sweden and it's really great that we have maintained that position.

One of the reasons why Per A Nilsson believes international students are so satisfied is the Buddy Programme, which is a service that all international students have the opportunity to participate in. It offers a variety of group activities such as sports, social events and travel, or just having a cup of coffee with fellow group members.

"It makes it easier for international students to have contact with other students on campus," says Per A Nilsson. "I think it’s an important factor why we have received the highest marks from students, in addition to that they are very pleased with the quality of courses and degree programmes."

Swedish universities performed well in the survey. The positive factors that came forward include that Sweden is a safe and secure country to live in, the educational and research standards are high and that the people have excellent English language skills.

"We will certainly use the results from the survey so that we can be even better," explains Anders Fällström. "Umeå University needs to improve in areas such as career guidance and opportunities for part-time jobs, like the majority of higher education institutions in Sweden."

About the ISB
The ISB 2012 Autumn Wave survey was developed and administered by the International Graduate Insight Group (i-graduate) - an independent benchmarking and research service - and has been responded by exchange students and other international students. A total of 161,781 students from 193 institutions in 14 countries participated in the International Student Barometer survey during October to December of 2012.

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For further information, please contact:
Per A. Nilsson, Director of International Office
Phone: +46 (0)90-786 68 66
Mobile: +46 (0)70-236 62 30

Anders Fällström, Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Education,
Umeå University
Mobile: +46 070-493 85 27




Umeå University
Umeå University is one of Sweden's largest institutions of higher learning with over 36,000 students and 4,200 employees. We have a well-established international research profile and a broad range of study options. Our campus constitutes an inspiring environment that encourages interdisciplinary meetings - between students, researchers, teachers and external stakeholders. Through collaboration with other members of society, we contribute to the development and strengthen the quality of our research and education.

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