How has total enrollment in university programs in Colombia increased or decreased?

Between 2016 and 2018, the largest drop in enrollment occurred in Industrial Engineering, Food and related programs (with an average decrease of -17%), while the largest growth was seen in Nutrition and Dietetics programs (with a 10% increase on average).

53% of the population at school age, that is, between 17 and 21 years old, is enrolled in undergraduate programs.

About 35% of the population that completes primary school and high school immediately enter higher education.


Bogotá, August 20, 2020. The Economics of Education Laboratory (LEE) conducted an analysis that presents statistics on total enrollment in the country’s undergraduate programs from 2016 to 2018 (the last period of official information available from the Ministry of National Education).


It also provides an outlook of the careers most chosen by students in the second half of 2018, and the ranking of programs that have had greater and lesser growth in enrollment between the second half of 2016 and the second half of 2018, according to data from the Ministry of National Education and the classification by Basic Core of Knowledge (NBC, for the Spanish original).


The programs with the most students enrolled are those of the NBC of Administration with 17.03% of the total enrollment for the semester, equivalent to 256,005 students. The programs classified by NBC as Education are in second place with 9.7% (145,792) of the students, followed by the programs belonging to NBC of Law and related programs in third place with 8.75% (131,603) students.


According to gender, the greatest differences are observed in NBC associated with Engineering, where there is a greater proportion of men who choose programs in these areas. In contrast, in NBC associated with Psychology and Education, there is a higher proportion of women.


As for the average decrease in total enrollment between 2016 and 2018, the drop in the NBC of Industrial Engineering and Agro-industrial Engineering stands out. In turn, Nutrition and Dietetics top the list of programs whose average enrollment rate has grown the most, with a growth of 10.07%, followed by Public Health at 8.34% and Sociology, Social Work and related programs at 7.90%.


If you would like to see the complete statistical analysis report, click here.

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