When you think of Argentina, the first thing that comes to mind is tango and temperament, soccer and Diego Maradona, as well as herds of cattle and gauchos. But the eighth largest country in the world offers much more than that according to 800zipcodes.
On the one hand there are its diverse landscapes from the Atlantic coast and the high mountain ranges including volcanoes and glaciers over tropical rainforests to the barren Tierra del Fuego in the extreme south.
As part of a study abroad in Argentina, it is worthwhile to travel to the country. You can experience almost all climate zones on earth and get to know the whole variety of flora and fauna that Argentina has to offer.
Argentina – then and now
The name Argentina, from the Latin argentum for “silver”, points to what was once the country’s greatest riches: For a long time, the world’s largest silver and copper mines were located in the Argentine Andes. Spanish colonial rule, which only ended in 1816 after the War of Liberation, benefited from them for just as long.
Nowadays Argentina is a presidential federal republic. Its pulsating center is the capital Buenos Aires, which is also known as the “Paris of South America” due to its cultural offerings. So it’s no wonder that most people go to Buenos Aires when it comes to studying in Argentina.
University landscape in Argentina
The Argentine university landscape has an old tradition. Both the local universities and their study programs enjoy a good international reputation. The study system is based on the Spanish model. The oldest university in the country was founded in Cordoba at the beginning of the 17th century.
State of higher education in Argentina
A good education has long been considered an important cornerstone for a professional career in Argentina. This idea seems to be reflected in the number of Argentine university graduates – around 12% of the Argentine population have studied and have a university degree. This means the highest rate of education in Latin America.
A total of around 1.5 million Argentines are enrolled at universities. You are not very mobile – probably also due to the good quality of study in your own country. This means that they mostly stay in one place of study. Foreign students are more drawn to the country; an average of 25,000 per year study in Argentina for a full degree or for a semester abroad.
Overview of educational institutions in Argentina
There are a total of 115 higher education institutions in Argentina, which can be divided into state and private universities.
The following universities are currently state-sponsored:
- 47 Universidades Públicas or Universidades Nacionales
- seven Institutos Universitarios Estatales
- a regional, an international and a foreign university.
At the public universities in Argentina is a major part of the national research instead and most scientists are employed here. The Universidades Nacionales have a wide range of courses. However, their study programs have so far hardly been internationally oriented.
After there were mostly state universities in Argentina for a long time, numerous private universities have emerged in the last few decades. There are currently 46 Universidades Privadas and 12 private Institutos Universitarios Privados.
Around 15% of all students are enrolled in them. A large part of the facilities is supported by religious communities, mainly the Catholic Church. In general, the focus at private universities is more on teaching than on research.
Quality assurance in higher education in Argentina
The Ministerio de Educación is responsible for the recognition of study programs and degrees at both state and private universities. This state ministry was re-established at the end of 2007 together with the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MinCyT).
Previously, regular waves of strikes by students and lecturers had paralyzed Argentine university operations. It was about the fight against poor working conditions, outdated university equipment and low salaries. In the meantime, these warnings have borne fruit and the state is promoting education and research to a greater extent. Studying in Argentina is increasingly associated with guaranteed quality assurance.
Student revolts have a certain tradition in Argentina: as early as 1918, the students succeeded in enforcing the autonomy of the universities, teaching and research free from politics, and self-administration through elected bodies.
An independent quality assurance with the accreditation and evaluation of higher education programs is on the State Comisión Nacional de Evaluación y Acreditación Universitaria (CONEAU).