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Welsh language in higher education institutions

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  • Release date: 26 July 2018
  • Period covered: 2016/17
  • Next update: July 2019
An annual report showing information on students with some teaching through Welsh and academic staff who are able to teach through Welsh by institution, mode and level of study, gender and module subject.

A chart showing the amount of Welsh studied by students in Welsh universities. The number of people with teaching in Welsh had been increasing, but all amounts of teaching through Welsh have decreased this year.

Key points

  • The Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol’s 2016/17 target for students studying at least 5 credits through Welsh was met, though the target for students studying at least 40 credits was missed. Please note that targets were formulated using slightly different methodology to this bulletin (detailed on page two of the report).
  • The number of students learning some of their degree through Welsh has fallen in 2016/17 from 7,780 to 6,870. Most of this decline is within the University of Wales, Trinity Saint David who attribute it to decreasing teacher training student numbers and a much lower provision of ‘bite sized’ Welsh courses, due to lack of staff, funding and resources.
  • Education was the most popular subject taught through Welsh. 2 in every 5 students with some teaching in Welsh were studying Education and around a quarter of Education students studied part of their degree in Welsh.
  • One third of students in Wales, who consider themselves fluent in Welsh, were studying part of their degree through Welsh. 1 in every 15 fluent Welsh speakers were studying mainly through Welsh (120 credits in Welsh).
  • The number of academic staff able to teach in Welsh has increased 52 per cent over the last 5 years, yet the number actually teaching has changed little.
  • The numbers of Welsh medium staff has remained constant. This is despite the Coleg Cymraeg providing less funding through its staffing scheme this year, suggesting that institutions are funding the posts themselves.


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