The rankings also include higher education in addition to international school tests, which further boosted the UK’s position.
The results are found in the new Learning Curve Index, published by Pearson, which ranks 39 countries on their educational performance.
The conclusions of the study not only emphasise the success of Asian education systems, but also illustrate the UK’s strong performance in education, beating other countries such as France, Germany and the United States.
The report says that the UK’s position is down to improvements in its scores, not only in international tests, but also because of a rise in the university graduation rate.
The 2013/14 rankings from the well-regarded ‘QS World University Ranks’, position almost half of UK universities in the top ten, with Cambridge ranking highest at number 3, while another three UK universities, University College London, Imperial College London and Oxford University filled the next three places accordingly.
Coinciding with this, UCAS figures for 2013/2014 indicate that in the UK, university acceptances are at their highest ever levels – a positive trend considering the initial dip after the introduction of higher tuition fees in 2012.
According to a report by CBRE, 2013 saw 495,000 acceptances by domicile applicants accepted on higher education courses. Students from the UK accounted for the majority of acceptances (87%), but acceptances from within the EU also increased and 2013/14 recorded the greatest annual increase in Non-EU students.
The increasing demand for a British education is opening up first-rate investment opportunities in the student accommodation centre.
Higher education is fast becoming a marketplace, with universities now competing for applicants. Popular regional student cities, such as Newcastle and Liverpool, are becoming hubs where increasing demand for housing means high rental yields as well as capital appreciation.
According to CBRE’s Student Housing Index, regional towns have shown average rental growth of 3.51% for 2012/2013, compared with a 3 year average of 3.36%.
These total returns have been reinforced by strong capital value growth, predominantly in regional towns and cities.
The CBRE Student Housing Index shows that the average value per bed has increased from £50,700 in 2009/10 to £56,600 in 2012/13, an increase of almost 12%, which has been partly due to increased investment and development of student accommodation in regional towns and cities.
In its latest annual report on the student accommodation market, property consultant Savills (SVS) asserts: “The student housing market has been a resilient and stable investment during the downturn and that is forecast to continue.” The report, UK Student Housing, forecasts a total return of 9.3% for the 2013/14 academic year.