Poor language skills and concerns over course accreditation have resulted in a low take-up by Irish students of the Erasmus study programme, Minister of State for European Affairs Lucinda Creighton has said.
She was speaking in Dublin yesterday at a European Commission event to celebrate 25 years of the Erasmus programme, which gives third-level students the opportunity to study abroad.
Irish students who did take part benefited immensely from the experience, both academically and socially, she said.
“A major concern for students still seems to be about recognition of credits and whether a course of study is properly accredited and will be recognised in the student’s home country.”
Ms Creighton said she suspected the Irish approach to languages held students back.
“We have a huge amount of work to do to ensure that our young people have the language skills to compete and co-operate with their European colleagues.”
She said she expected the commission’s new strategy on the internationalisation of higher education, due to be published soon, would address these issues.