Market Report and News

Market Report and News

urkey is a quickly-developing country, with the youngest population ratio in Europe. The country is working towards being in the top 15 economies of the World by 2020; so now, more than ever, there is a large market for a skilled, educated, globally-minded current and future workforce.

This translates into a strong need for education, but the education system in Turkey is lacking space for all of the enthusiastic students seeking to advance academically. Because of this, families and prospective students are looking outside of Turkey for viable study options, to plan for the future.

As you know there is a direct correlation between demand for studying abroad and the economical development of a potential country. Turkey is certainly one of the most rapidly developing economies in the world today. The Turkish economy has made huge progress recently, it has opened its markets to foreign companies and Turkish companies have begun to take advantage of international markets. Turkish companies are very keen on integrating into the global economy and many Turkish business people are looking for new adventures in the global market. The fast developing private sector of Turkey has become one of the biggest potential customers of study abroad programmes. Although it seems that Istanbul is the centre of the Turkish private business world, there is an amazing development and internationalization in some Anatolian cities, the so called Anatolian Tigers. 

According to the Turkish Ministry of Tourism in 2001, around 35 million tourists visited Turkey. Many tourist organizations operating in Turkey find that in order to serve their customers well they have to employ people who are able to communicate effectively. Therefore, those in the tourism industry are very keen on study abroad programs.

By the year 2020 the population of Turkey will have reached 80 million, with almost 60% of this population under 30 years old. 70% of the total 30 million households will be middle class living in urbanized areas, thus, one of their main priorities will be to provide an excellent education for their children. There are around 1.5 million secondary school graduates, 500,000 of which do not have the chance to study at a university in Turkey, therefore they are very enthusiastic about having an overseas education.  

The demand for studying abroad is not only from secondary school students and graduates, but also from 2.5 million university students. The majority of Turkish university students know the role and importance of study abroad  in getting a better job in a competitive business world. There are approximately 3.5 million students studying at Turkish universities which also includes Open University students. Around 2 million of them are studying on a 4 year course. 

There are around 350,000 university students in Istanbul at around 50 universities. Over 200, 000 students at  around 20 universities in Ankara. Izmir has 9 universities and 110,000 university students. 

At IEFT, we believe that although there is a huge need to support and strengthen the education system within Turkey, our mission is to assist Turkish students and business people in broadening their horizons by traveling and studying abroad.

Who are the potential students?

a) Students of private primary and secondary schools
b) Students of private and state universities and higher educational bodies
c) Students of university prep colleges
d) Students of public primary and secondary schools
e) Students of other public schools
f) Employees of private foreign trade, export & import and tourism companies

Which programs are popular with Turkish Students?
University Degree Courses: This segment is very important in Turkey. Because of a shortage of places at public Turkish universities, many students are not able to attend university in Turkey. Due to this lack of opportunity within the country, the Turkish Higher Education Council reached a decision last year which allows students who were unable to enter Turkish universities to seek education abroad on the condition that they pass the Turkish University Placement exam. If they do not pass this exam, their foreign degree will not be recognized in Turkey.

Master Courses: Those programmes are very popular. There are around 400,000 students leaving Turkish Universities and most of them are looking for opportunities to do a Masters degree abroad. According to statistics, there are around 10,000 Turkish Students currently completing their Masters outside of the country. The most popular subjects are; Business, Engineering, Politics, Humanities, and Media Studies.  

There are around 400,000 students that complete their undergraduate education at four year state and private universities each year in Turkey. A significant number of these graduates would like to obtain a postgraduate degree; however, Turkish universities generally have very few places available for postgraduate studies. Thus, Turkish university graduates are very keen on continuing their postgraduate studies abroad. They believe that studying and living abroad will help them to develop both personally and professionally.


Language Courses:  The English Language level of the majority of Turkish students is still quite low, this course has the biggest demand. After English, German, Spanish, French, Italian are the most popular languages. 
Executive Courses: A demand is seen in Istanbul, Izmir, Adana, Bursa, Ankara, Gaziantep, and Denizli from middle and top managers of companies.

University Foundation Courses: There are around 1.5 million secondary school graduates taking university entrance exams, but only 600,000 of them are able to go to university, the rest are looking for some other opportunities such as studying abroad, therefore, UFP is becoming a very popular course in Turkey.

Summer course: very popular for the 7-18 age group. The groups are generally organized by the school management or head of language departments. The main demands are coming from private primary and secondary schools and some reputable state schools.

Examination courses: TOEFL, TOEIC, Cambridge Exams, OIBEC are in high demand. The students who are planning to study at a university demand these courses at any time of the year. It is quite important for them to prove their level of English with an internationally recognized certificate.

Short Term Certificate and Diploma Courses: The demand is mainly from young university graduates and staff of medium and large companies.

High School; Out of over 80,000 students studying abroad, around 1% are going abroad for High School programs.  

Basic Statistics of Turkey 

Turkey has:

  • 102 State universities 
  • 75 Foundation (Private) universities in Turkey and 5 in Northern Cyprus 

There are approximately:

  • 2.7 million undergraduate students 
  • 135,000 post graduate students 
  • 35,000 doctoral degree students at 177 universities
There are approximately;

State Primary and Medium Schools; 40,000, Student number; 12,000,000 
State High Schools; 8,000  Student number; 4,000,000
Private Primary, Medium and High Schools; 2,000  Student number; 300,000 

The statistics of the Turkish Students studying abroad per year;

USA; 11, 000
UK; 20,000 (including summer language students)
Germany; 25,000 (includes Turks who leave in Germany)
France; 2,000
Canada; 2,500
Australia; 2,500
Holland; 800
Switzerland; 500
Bulgaria; 3,000
Azerbaycan;  4,500 
Austria ;  2,000 
Ukraine;  1,000
Belgium;  500
Russia; 500
Italy; 800
Japan; 300 
China; 700

Others: 5,000

TOTAL: Over 80,000 Students 

(Source: Turkish Education Ministry 2010)

The Cities in Turkey that IEFT Holds Fairs


IEFT visitor numbers in 2 days; 10,000

Population : 15,000,000
Number of Universities : 51
Number of Primary and High Schools : 2400

Istanbul has some of the finest institutions of higher education in Turkey, including almost 50 universities. Most of the reputable universities are public, but in recent years there has been an upsurge in the number of private universities, with more than twenty founded since 2006.

Istanbul University, founded as an Islamic school in 1453, is the oldest Turkish educational institution in the city, while Istanbul Technical University (founded in 1773) is the world's third-oldest university dedicated entirely for engineering sciences. These public universities are two of just eight across the city; other prominent state universities in Istanbul include Boğaziçi University, Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts, and Marmara University.  Private universities have a very short history, going back to just the early 1990s, with the establishment of Sabancı University,  Koc University, Bilgi University, Kultur and  Kadir Has University. Today there are at least forty private universities in the city.

To see the full list of Universities in Istanbul please visit 

In 2010, there were about 4,500 schools, about half of which were primary; on average, each school had 650 students. In recent years, Istanbul's educational system has expanded substantially; from 2000 to 2009, the number of classrooms and teachers nearly doubled and the number of students increased by more than sixty percent.

There are round 1500 high schools in Istanbul. Some of them are very famous such as;

Galatasaray High School, Robert College, Uskudar American High School, Italian High School, Kadıkoy High School, Cagaloglu High School, Isık High School, Istek Vakfı High Schools, Ekrem Elginkan High School, Eyuboglu High Schools, Beyoglu High School, Besiktas Boys High School, German High School. 

To see the full list of Istanbul High Schools please visit; or 


IEFT Visitor numbers; 3,000 

Population : 4,500,000
Number of Universities : 12
Number of High Schools : 1000

Ankara is the capital of Turkey and the country's second largest city after Istanbul. The city has a mean elevation of 938 metres (3,077 ft) and as of 2010 the metropolitan area in the entire Ankara Province had a population of 4.4 million.

Ankara is the centre of the state-owned and private Turkish defence and aerospace companies, where the industrial plants and headquarters of the Turkish Aerospace Industries, MKE, Aselsan, Havelsan, Roketsan, FNSS, Nurol, and numerous other firms are located. Exports to foreign countries from these defence and aerospace firms have steadily increased in the past decades. The IDEF in Ankara is one of the largest international expositions of the global arms industry. A number of the global automotive companies also have production facilities in Ankara, such as the German bus and truck manufacturer MAN SE. 

A large percentage of the employment in Ankara is provided by state institutions; such as the ministries, under secretariats, and other administrative bodies of the Turkish government. There are also many foreign citizens working as diplomats or clerks in the embassies of their respective countries.

Ankara is noted, within Turkey, for the multitude of universities it is home to. These include the following, several of them being among the most reputable in the country:
  • Ankara University
  • Atılım University
  • Başkent University
  • Bilkent University
  • Çankaya University
  • Gazi University
  • Hacettepe University
  • Middle East Technical University
  • TOBB University of Economics and Technology
  • Turgut Özal University
  • Ufuk University
  • Yıldırım Beyazıt University
To see full list of universities in and around Ankara please visit 

High Schools in Ankara

Bilkent High School, ODTU Vakfı High School, Buyuk Kolej, Arı High School, Cankaya High School, Yıldırım Beyazıt High School, Ataturk High School, Tevfik Fikret High School, Ankara Science High School. 
To see the full list please visit;