A European Perspective in Academic Mobility

A Case of Erasmus Program


  • Fatma Mizikaci Ankara University
  • Zülal Ugur Arslan Ankara University




academic mobility, European higher education, global higher education, international students, Erasmus program


ERASMUS is a mobility program that provides its participants with experiences in their fields of study and work by presenting them global trends. It promotes the academic, professional and individual development of the participants while contributing to the extension of the worldwide work market. This study aims to explore the impact of the Erasmus Program from the perspectives of Turkish students. Twelve Erasmus students in different fields of study at three universities in Ankara were interviewed. Findings were analyzed into the themes of individual, professional and academic development, future of careers and global work market development. It is concluded that Erasmus has an impact on not only individuals but also on the worldwide labor market with its enlarging scope and comprehensive strategies as well as its challenges by rapid developments in the demands and needs of the new era.

Author Biographies

Fatma Mizikaci, Ankara University

FATMA MIZIKACI, PhD, is associate professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, Faculty of Educational Sciences at Ankara University, Turkey. She is specialized in higher education systems, policies, Curriculum, and Instruction. Her published works include books and journal articles on curriculum, privatization, accreditation, and discourse in higher education, higher education systems and policies in Turkey, Central Asia, Europe, and the United States. She teaches curriculum theory, ideology and philosophy of curriculum and qualitative research in curriculum at undergraduate and graduate levels. She was a visiting scholar at UNESCO CEPES in 2005 where she published UNESCO book Higher Education in Turkey. In 2016, Dr. MIZIKACI was a visiting scholar at Chapman University, CA and worked with Peter McLaren in a project on Critical Discourse Analysis in Higher Education. She is also the co-editor of A Language of Freedom and Teacher’s Authority: Case Comparisons from Turkey and the United States (2017).

Zülal Ugur Arslan, Ankara University

ZÜLAL UĞUR ARSLAN, is research assistant in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, Faculty of Educational Sciences at Ankara University, Turkey. She received the bachelor degree in the field of Elementary Mathematics Education and also in the field of Computer and Instructional Technologies Education as a double major in 2011, at Osmangazi University and received MA in Curriculum Development in 2015, at Ankara University, Institute of Educational Sciences. She has been doing her doctorate studies in the same institution since 2015. Her research interests include international examinations (TIMSS), comparative curriculum studies, mathematics education, teaching expertise and student mobility. Email:


Aktan, E., & Sari, B. (2010). An inquiry on application process of EU Erasmus programme and students' views regarding Erasmus programme of student exchange. European Perspectives on Internationalization, Exedra Special Issue, 239-268.

Arevalo, J., Pelkonen, P., & Tahvanainen, L. (2008). Experiences of Msc European forestry Erasmus Mundus participants in the labor market. In P. Schmidt, S., &Lewark N. Strange (Eds.), What do we know about our graduates? Graduate analyses for forest sciences and related curricula (pp. 83-88). Joensuu, Finland: University of Eastern Finland Press.

Aydın, S. (2012). "I am not the same after my ERASMUS": A qualitative research. The Qualitative Report, 17(28), 1-23.

Barile, S., Polese, F., Saviano, M., & Caputo, F. (2015). T-shaped people for addressing the global challenge of sustainability. In Service-dominant logic, network & systems theories and service science. Retrieved June 15, 2017, from https://sapienza.pure.elsevier.com/en/publications/t-shaped-people-for-addressing-the-global-challenge-of-sustainabi-3

Bloem, J., Van Doorn, M., Duivestein, S., Excoffier, D., Maas, R., & Van Ommeren, E. (2014). The Fourth Industrial Revolution. Things Tighten.

Bryła, P. (2015). The impact of international student mobility on subsequent employment and professional career: A large-scale survey among Polish former Erasmus students. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 176(2015), 633 – 641.doi: 10.1016/j.sbspro.2015.01.521

Bryman, A. (2004). Social Research Methods. (2nd ed.). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

Cairns, D. (2017). The Erasmus undergraduate exchange programme: A highly qualified success story?. Children's Geographies, 15(6), 728-740.doi: 10.1080/14733285.2017.1328485

Commission of the European Communities. (1996). Education - Training - Research: The obstacles to transnational mobility. Retrieved May 22, 2017, from http://aei.pitt.edu/1226/1/education_mobility_obstacles_gp_COM_96_462.pdf

Craig, N., & Trapp, A. (2008). A pilot study exploring the student learning experience from a disciplinary perspective. Higher Education Academy Psychology Network. Retrieved July 1, 2017, from https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/docs/pdf/ p200811112_International_Project_Report

Creswell, J. W., & Poth, C. N. (2017). Qualitative inquiry and research design: Choosing among five approaches. California, USA: Sage Publications.

Cushner, K., & Mahon, J. (2002). Overseas student teaching: Affecting personal, professional, and global competencies in an age of globalization. Journal of Studies in International Education, 6(1), 44-58. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1177/1028315302006001004

Demir, A., & Demir S. (2009). Erasmus programının kültürlerarası diyalog ve etkileşim açısından değerlendirilmesi (Öğretmen adaylarıyla nitel bir çalışma). UluslararasıSosyalAraştırmalarDergisi, 2 (9), 95-105.

Education and Culture-European Commission. (2015a). Erasmus – Facts, Figures, and Trends: The European Support for Student and Staff Exchanges and University Cooperation in 2013-14. Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union.

Education and Culture-European Commission. (2015b). Erasmus+ Programme: Annual Report 2014. Brussels: European Commission.

Education and Culture-European Commission. (2016). The ERASMUS impact study: Regional analysis. A comparative analysis of the effects of ERASMUS on the personality, skills, and career of students of European regions and selected countries. Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union.

Erasmus+. (n.d.). Retrieved June 12, 2017, from https://ec.europa.eu/programmes/erasmus-plus/about_en

Erasmus+ Programme. (n.d.). Retrieved June 7, 2018, from http://www.ua.gov.tr/en/programmes/erasmus-programme

Erasmus+ The EU program for education, training, youth, and sport. (2014-2020). (n.d.). Retrieved July 25, 2017, from https://ec.europa.eu/programmes/erasmus-plus/sites/erasmusplus/files/library/erasmus-plus-factsheet_en.pdf

European Commission. (2017). White paper on the future of Europe: Reflections and scenarios for the EU27 by 2025. Retrieved June 8, 2017, from https://ec.europa.eu/commission/sites/beta-political/files/white_paper_on_the_future_of_europe_en.pdf

Jacobone, V. & Moro, G. (2015) Evaluating the impact of the Erasmus Program: Skills and European identity. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 40(2), 309-328.doi: 10.1080/02602938.2014.909005

Jansone, I. A., &Dislere, V. (2016). Counseling model for the promoting career development of ERASMUS mobility participants. British Journal of Education, Society & Behavioural Science, 18(1), 1-13. doi: 10.9734/BJESBS/2016/28954

Kehm, B. M. (2005). The contribution of international student mobility to human development and global understanding. US-China Education Review, 2(1), 18-24.

Leung, M. W. H. (2012). Read ten thousand books, walk ten thousand miles’: Geographical mobility and capital accumulation among Chinese scholars. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, 38, 311-324.doi: 10.1111/j.1475-5661.2012.00526.x

Maiworm, F., & Teichler, U. (1997). The ERASMUS experience: Major findings of the ERASMUS evaluation research project. Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities.

Mercer, J. (2011). Experiencing ERASMUS: Reflections on integrating Polish psychology students onto a year of a degree in the UK. The British Psychological Society - Psychology Teaching Review, 17(1), 13-22.

Mitchell, K. (2012). Student Mobility and European Identity: ERASMUS Study as a Civic Experience? Journal of Contemporary European Research, 8(4), 490-518.

Opper, S., Teichler, U., & Carlson, J. (1990). The impact of study abroad programmes on students graduates. London, UK: Jessica Kingsley.

Oskam, I. F. (2009). T-shaped engineers for interdisciplinary innovation: an attractive perspective for young people as well as a must for innovative organizations. Retrieved July 1, 2017, from https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Inge_Oskam/publication

Ozler, Z. (2012). Visa-related problems of Turkish Erasmus Students. Retrieved September 1, 2018, from https://oldweb.ikv.org.tr/images/upload/data/files/ikv-brief8.pdf

Sigalas, E. (2010). The role of personal benefits in public support for the EU: Learning from the ERASMUS students. West European Politics, 33(6), 1341-1361. doi:10.1080/01402382.2010.508912

Silverman, D. (2001). Interpreting qualitative data. Methods for Analysing talk, text, and interaction. (2nd ed). London, UK: Sage Publications.

Şahin, İ. (2007). Perceptions of Turkish exchange students of the European Union’s ERASMUS program. (Unpublished master thesis). Boğaziçi University, Istanbul, Turkey.

Patton, M. Q. (2005). Qualitative research. New Jersey, USA: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Puigpelat, J. (1989). Engineering education in ERASMUS: An overview. European Journal of Engineering Education, 14(3), 225-230.doi: 10.1080/03043798908903361

Teichler, U. (2001). Why mobility? What we know and what we do not know. In international programme office for education and training (Ed.), Individual Development to Employability (pp. 6-20). Stockholm, Sweden: International Programme Office for Education and Training.

Teichler, U., & Janson, K. (2007). The professional value of temporary study in another European country: Employment and work of former ERASMUS students. Journal of Studies in International Education, 11(3-4), 486-495.doi: 10.1177/1028315307303230

Užpalienė, D., &Vaičiūnienė, V. (2012). ERASMUS students’ experiences in linguistic diversity and multicultural communication. Retrieved June 15, 2017, from http://www.journals.vu.lt/verbum/article/view/4973.

Varghese, N.V. (2008). Globalization of higher education and cross-border student mobility. Research papers IIEP. UNESCO. Retrieved July 2, 2017, from https://www.researchgate.net/profile/NV_Varghese/publication/44839105_Globalization_of_Higher_Education_and_Cross-Border_Student_Mobility/links/54212b1b0cf241a65a1e67a0.pdf

Vossensteyn, H., Beerkens, M., Cremonini, L., Besançon, B., Focken, N., Leurs, B., … de Wit, H. (2010). Improving the participation in the ERASMUS programme. Brussels, Belgium: European Parliament.




How to Cite

Mizikaci, F., & Arslan, Z. U. (2019). A European Perspective in Academic Mobility: A Case of Erasmus Program. Journal of International Students, 9(2), 705–726. https://doi.org/10.32674/jis.v9i2.1138



Research Articles (English)