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EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Mobility and internationalisation


13.Mobility and internationalisation

Last update: 15 February 2024

The most important priorities and directions in Estonian education have been set out in the Estonian Education Strategy 2021-35. The strategy emphasizes, inter alia, the need to take account of globalisation and to ensure equal access to quality education for all in a rapidly changing world, regardless of social or cultural background, age, gender, etc. 

International co-operation is one of the basic principles and values ​​that have guided the strategy and are the basis for its implementation. One of the action lines of the strategy includes the promotion of internationalisation and learning mobility in order to diversify study opportunities, increase the quality of education and promote the Estonian language and culture. To this end, it is necessary to increase the mobility of teachers, vocational teachers, support specialists and university teachers, to develop educational marketing and to promote long-term international strategic cooperation in the field of education and training.

Internationalisation of education supports the development of Estonian areas of economic growth and the quality of higher education. Providing academic and professional foreign language training in Estonia, paying attention to work practice opportunities and creating employment opportunities for graduates in the Estonian labour market are integral to the internationalisation. 

These principles are also supported by the Research and Development, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development Plan 2021-35. For example, emphasis is put on ´internationalisation at home´- creating a business environment that would retain and attract talent, recruiting top-level researchers to Estonia, creating opportunities for researchers and other academic staff to move between academia, public and private sector in Estonia and internationally.

Estonia has most opportunities for international mobility at higher education level with respect to both incoming and outgoing students. While in the European Higher Education Area aims to use the Erasmus+ programme to strengthen mobility, the objective of the Estonian higher education policy is not only enabling an experience of mobility to Estonian students but also attracting the best foreign students in Estonia. According to the Education Strategy, in addition to pupils and students, more teachers, vocational teachers, support specialists and university teachers, including foreign lecturers, should be involved in learning mobility.

The international competitiveness of education in Estonia is monitored based on the share of foreign students in Estonian higher education institutions. Over the last decade, the number of foreign students has increased by about five times and in recent years has stabilised between 10-15%.    

Short term outgoing learning mobility in vocational and higher education is used as a main indicator of internationalisation of education. A target has been set that by 2035, at least 8% of VET graduates and 15% of BA and MA graduates have participated in short term learning mobility. 

Education and Youth Authority under the Ministry of Education and Research implements national, international and European Union education programmes, coordinates the award of different grants and scholarships, and engages in marketing of Estonian education abroad. The activities relating to marketing of higher education abroad are carried out under the brand name of Study in Estonia

The information targeted at foreign researchers has been brought together on the portal Research in Estonia administered by a foundation under the Ministry of Education and Research. 

In 2020, a brand Education Estonia was launched for introducing, global marketing and export of Estonian education and its success stories. The Education Estonia website is used to mediate or sell services and products related to Estonian education system, including digital solutions, knowledge, skills, experience, consultations, training, study trips that can be shared and exported to other countries at various levels, e.g. state agencies, local governments, organizations, institutions and companies.