HSBC’s report Learning For Life, the second in The Value of Education series, reveals that 47 per cent of parents think it will be harder for their children’s generation to find a job after finishing education than it was for their own generation.

In order to increase their children’s chances of standing out from their peers, parents are considering topping up a domestic university education – and are willing to pay more for it.

The study of over 5,550 parents in 16 countries found that to give their children a head start in the job market 77 per cent of parents would consider sending their child abroad for either an undergraduate or postgraduate education.

Aspirations for an inter-national university education are highest in Asia: parents in Malaysia (80 per cent), Hong Kong (74 per cent), Indonesia (74 per cent) and Singapore (74 per cent) are the most likely to consider sending their children to university abroad for their undergraduate study.

An even-higher proportion of Asian parents would consider a university abroad for a postgraduate course, with this popular in India (88 per cent), Turkey (83 per cent), Malaysia (82 per cent) and China (82 per cent).

Recognising that inter-national education comes with higher costs, the study shows that parents would consider paying more for a university education abroad than for a domestic one.

These opportunities come at a cost

Forty-five per cent are prepared to pay at least a quarter more, while 24 per cent are willing to pay 50 per cent more. The report also reveals that the cost of an international university education is the main barrier for parents who would not consider this option, with 34 per cent saying they would like to send their child to study at university abroad but can’t afford it.

“Many parents recognise it is more challenging than ever for younger generations to compete in the job market – and they are willing to help their children boost their opportunities for success by funding educational extras such as going to university abroad or additional tutoring,” Charlie Nunn, group head of wealth management, HSBC, commented.

“However, these opportunities come with additional costs, and to ensure they are able to offer this extra help, parents should start planning and saving for their children’s education early, to ensure that the ambitions they have for them turn into reality.”


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