This review of higher education policy in Mexico was requested by the Mexican Ministry of Education to take stock of progress since the last OECD review of the higher education system in Mexico, published in 2008, and to support development of the new government’s National Development Plan and Sectoral Education Programme. The report examines the state of the higher education sector in Mexico and analyses key policies implemented by the federal and state governments. It assesses national governance and co-operation structures that help to guide the higher education system, and the relevance of existing national strategies. It also looks at public funding of higher education institutions, how the quality of higher education programmes is assured; and the extent to which the higher education system contributes to equity. The report concludes by exploring two key sectors of higher education: teacher education colleges and professional and technical institutions. A companion volume focusing on the labour market relevance and outcomes of higher education is also available: Higher Education in Mexico: Labour Market Relevance and Outcomes.
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Half a million higher education graduates enter the labour market every year in Mexico. While their labour market outcomes are considerably better on average than those of upper secondary education graduates, some higher education graduates face periods of inactivity and unemployment. Many graduates who find work end up being over-qualified or working in the informal sector. This report finds that the Mexican higher education system needs to be better aligned with the labour market to help students develop the skills employers seek. Students need better support to succeed in their higher education studies and develop labour market relevant skills, which will help facilitate their achievement of good outcomes in the workforce. This calls for a comprehensive whole-of-government approach and the involvement of all higher education stakeholders. The report proposes a set of policy recommendations to address these issues and help Mexican higher education graduates achieve better outcomes in the labour market.
The report was developed as part of the OECD Enhancing Higher Education System Performance project and is a companion to the OECD report, The Future of Mexican Higher Education: Promoting Quality and Equity, which focuses on broader issues in higher education, including governance, funding, quality and equity, as well as two key sectors of higher education: teacher education colleges and professional and technical institutions.
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