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Education Indicators in Focus

Education Indicators in Focus is a recurring series of briefs that highlight specific indicators in OECD’s Education at a Glance that are of particular interest to policy makers and practitioners. They provide a detailed look into current issues in pre-primary, primary and secondary education, higher education, and adult outcomes from a global perspective, and contain an engaging mix of text, tables and charts that describe the international context of the most pressing questions in education policy and practice.

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At What Age Do University Students Earn Their First Degree?

  • Across OECD countries, the median age students first graduated from university fell by 6 months between 2005 and 2011.
  • The median age of first graduation ranges from around 22 in Belgium and the United Kingdom to over 27 in Iceland and Israel.
  • The percentage of part-time students has increased from 19.8% in 2005 to 22.0% in 2011, suggesting that more flexible routes between study and work are slowly becoming more widespread.
  • The percentage of older students (aged 30 and over) entering universities has remained constant at around 10%-11% on average between 2005 and 2011.

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