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Turkey's student-friendly cities announced: Eskişehir ranks first!
Turkey's student-friendly cities announced: Eskişehir ranks first!

After the 2023 YKS Preference Period, which ended on August 8, another exam marathon was left behind, while the academic year of many universities started on October 2. According to the student-friendly cities survey, which will shed light on those preparing for the next exam, Eskişehir became Turkey's most student-friendly university city. Aegean and Mediterranean cities also made a mark in the research. 

TURKEY - The academic year started in many universities on October 2. The university placement results announced by the Council of Higher Education showed that this year's quota occupancy rate was 99.8%, the total number of students who made a choice increased by 9% to more than 3.5 million, and the number of students who settled increased by 47,393 compared to last year. Based on the insight that university preferences are also related to the city where the university is located, English tutoring platform Preply has published its review of cities that welcome university students. 

The number of higher education graduates doubled in 10 years

Preply Europe Regional Manager Mustafa Ali Sivişoğlu said, "Universities have an organic relationship with the cities they are located in and change the texture and culture of that city in a good way. Based on the 2023 Student-Friendly University Cities 2023 SFCUS survey conducted with more than 40 thousand students, we analyzed students' satisfaction levels regarding the cities and the opportunities offered by the cities to students." 

The assessment, prepared by a company specializing in online foreign language learning by examining multiple sources, included data on the general situation of higher education in Turkey. Noting that there are a total of 208 universities in Turkey, including 129 public universities, 75 foundation universities and 4 foundation vocational colleges, the study also mentioned the 2022 National Education Statistics published by the Turkish Statistical Institute in May 2023. According to these figures, the proportion of higher education graduates in the population aged 25 and over, which was 9.8% in 2008, increased to 23.9% by 2022. Data shared by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) as part of the Education at a Glance, 2023 report revealed that the number of young adults with higher education in Turkey has doubled in the last 10 years.

Mustafa Ali Sivişoğlu pointed out that universities opened on a local scale make undergraduate education more widespread and said, "It takes time for a city to get used to university life. Students cannot adopt cities, and cities cannot adopt students at the same level and in the same time in every region. According to the results of the research, which is based on criteria such as transportation, social facilities, public attitudes, and relations with shopkeepers, students studying at universities in 27 cities are satisfied with their cities. In 38 cities, dissatisfaction prevails."

Eskisehir and Ankara lead the way

According to the survey, Eskişehir ranked first in terms of student satisfaction, with an average score of 91, making it the most student-friendly city in Turkey. The city, which is home to Anadolu, Eskişehir Osmangazi and Eskişehir Technical Universities, has managed to maintain its long-standing title of "student city" in this survey as well. Mustafa Ali Sivişoğlu stated that the reasons why Eskişehir is at the top are clear: "The Porsuk Stream running through the middle of the city and the horizontal urbanization approach make Eskişehir no different from European cities famous for their canals. The warm and friendly attitude of the people who are used to the student population makes Eskişehir one of the priority cities for higher education for many students. Ankara, which is loved by many, ranks second thanks to its universities, such as Bilkent, Hacettepe and Middle East Technical University, most of which are campus schools. On the other hand, Istanbul is ranked in the top 10 only on the Anatolian side, which can be explained by reasons such as increasing costs and crowded population."

Aegean and Mediterranean 

Stating that one of the striking findings of the research is that the cities in the Aegean and Mediterranean are positioned at the top of the list, Mustafa Ali Sivişoğlu, Preply Europe Regional Manager, said: "Aydın, Muğla, Antalya and Manisa are among the top 10 cities with the highest student satisfaction levels. With their mild climates, proximity to the sea, natural beauty and low population density, these cities stand out as cities where the cost of living is relatively lower. In addition, the tolerant attitude of Aegean and Mediterranean people towards students makes these cities among the favourite education cities, especially for neighbouring provinces. Even though some of these cities are metropolitan cities, they are still small compared to cities like Istanbul and Ankara, and they provide students with an educational environment where they feel safe and satisfied."  

Cities also determine leisure preferences 

Sivişoğlu pointed out that the study they conducted as Preply, which brings together qualified language instructors from all over the world with students who want to learn those languages and offers many private course options such as English online courses, online German courses, online Russian courses, is a comprehensive compilation and concluded his evaluations with the following statements:

"In order to find out how students really feel and what they think about their cities, we also evaluated forum posts and comments written on sharing platforms. In this way, we determined what kind of activities students prefer to do in their free time. We concluded that criteria such as cultural opportunities, geographical factors, university facilities and climate/weather conditions affect students' free time preferences. For example, we found that in cities with poorer cultural opportunities and continental climates, domestic activities are more common. We observed that university students studying in cities with these characteristics also benefit from online language courses in order to invest in their careers. As Preply, we make language learning independent of time and place with native-speaking expert instructors and support students to build a successful career. We hope that this study will be a guiding guide during the preference periods.

Contact: Tülay Genç | [email protected] | +31 30 799 6022

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