While only 31 percent of immigrants who arrived in Sweden prior to 1991 had some form of post-secondary education, 44 percent of immigrants who moved to Sweden after 2002 have some form of higher education.
The figures come from a comprehensive survey of the level of education of people in Sweden carried out by Statistics Sweden (Statistiska centralbyrån – SCB).
The study also found that roughly same same percentage of Swedes (39 percent) and those born abroad (38 percent) have some level of post-secondary education.
According to the survey, the level of education has increased most among immigrants from South America.
An increasing percentage of immigrants from Africa, Asia, North America, and Oceania who have arrived since 2002 also possess a higher level of education compared with those who arrived prior to 1991.
And while more immigrants from the rest of the world are coming to Sweden with higher levels of education, the same can’t be said of immigrants from the European Union and the Nordic region, where the percentage of immigrants with post-secondary education has decreased somewhat in the last two decades.
The differences in level of education between immigrant groups also vary due to difference between countries of origin, their ages and reason for immigration.
The study also found that 20 percent of those born outside of Sweden possessed pre-secondary education, whereas the corresponding number among Swedes was 12 percent.
Immigrant women were more likely to have a low level of education, while the opposite went for Swedish women.
Sweden’s large cities also appear to be be magnates for attracting educated people, whether born in Sweden or abroad, the survey found.