Future analysis of the higher education social demand from a demographic perspective

Document Type : Original Article


Assistant professor of National Institute for population research, Tehran, Iran



Objective: Gaining accurate knowledge of the level and trend of the relative share of the population aged 17-27 years old in the last 15 years old (2006-2021) and predicting the future image of social demand for higher education in this age group until 1415 based on different scenarios.
Methods: To estimate the future demand for higher education, the participation rate was estimated with Dator's Four Generic Scenario Archetypes method
Results: The results showed that the participation rate increased with a very gentle slope in the stability scenario. The increase in the demand for entrance exams in this scenario is more affected by the increase in the exposed population. In the fluctuation scenario, the assumptions of the decline scenario are less intense, leading to a decrease in the participation rate around 2030, but with proper policy-making and change in the employment situation and the industry's structure over time from 2031, the participation rate increases slightly.
Conclusion: The demand for higher education will vary from about one million people in the worst case to about 2.4 million people in ideal economic and social conditions for 2036.


Abugamea, G. H.(2019), Determinants of demand for higher education in Palestine, the case of Gaza Strip, 1994-2017, MPRA Paper, Online at https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de.
Asghari S, Akbarpour Shirazi M. (2018) Presenting Iran's future higher education scenarios using fuzzy cognitive maps. Quarterly Journal of Research and Planning in Higher Education; 24 (1):1-26
Fardjadi, Gh. A. (2004) Higher education, employment and growth, Tehran: National institute of population research
Fajcíková, A.& Urbancová H.,(2019), Factors Influencing Students’ Motivation to Seek Higher Education—A Case Study at a State University in the Czech Republic, Sustainability, MDPI,doi:10.3390/su11174699.
Gharun, M. (2004), Challenges of social demand for higher education in Iran, Majles and Pajouhesh, 10 (41), 293-322.
Gharun M. (2004). Effects of Family Socio – economic Status on Demands for Higher Education. Quarterly Journal of Research and Planning in Higher Education. 9 (4):43-74
Ghavidel S, Farjadi G, Razeghi H, Badiei H.(2012) Forecasting of Higher Education Demand for Undergraduate and Graduate Levels in Iran’s 2025 Prospect. Quarterly Journal of Research and Planning in Higher Education, 18 (1):43-68.
Hemmati, A., Goudarzi, M. A., Hajiani, I.. (2016) Exploring the Future of Commercialization of Higher Education in the Islamic Republic of Iran; a Necessity or an Obligation, Journal of future studies management, 26 (102), 1-14
Hufner, K. (1981), Demography and Higher Education: Some Theoretical and Empirical Considerations on Their Interrelationships, European Journal of Education, 16.,325-337.
Kazemipoor, Sh. Et al. (2007) Foresight of the number of candidates and who passed the national entrance exam until 2016, Tehran: national institute of population, Iran
Kazemipoor, Sh, Motti Haghshenas, N. (2006) Analyzing the effects and consequences of increasing girls in higher education, Tehran: national institute of population, Iran
Mohammadi Roozbahani K, Taromi A. (2006) Applicants, Motivational Factors for University Admission. Quarterly Journal of Research and Planning in Higher Education. 11 (3):103-125.
Montazer, Gh. A., Falahati, N. (2016) Iranian Higher Education Future Scenarios Driven by Information Technology, Journal of science and technology policy, 8 (1), 47-68.
Motti Haghshenas, N. (2015) Demographic evaluation of higher education changes with emphasis on youth employment issues in Iran: current situation & forecasting. Population; 21 (90 and 89) :1-18

Nazem bokaei, M, Siami araghi, E., Fahimifar, F. (2018) Influencing factors on higher education in Iran (Economic modeling approach), Educational Measurement and evaluation studies, 7 (20), 57-71.

Rabinovich, S. G. (2005). Measurement errors and uncertainties (theory and practice), AIP Press, Springer, New York.
Salehi M J (2017) Higher education income elasticity demand for Iranian households. Quarterly Journal of Research and Planning in Higher Education. 23 (2) :49-69
Shiri M, Noorollahi T. (2012) Change in Population Structure and Demand for Higher Education in Iran. Iranian Journal of official statistics studies, 23 (1), 83-102.
Zamani, A؛ Pouratashi, M. (2020) An Analysis on the Trend of Social Demand for Studying in “Higher Education” Academic Major, Quarterly of social studies and research in Iran, 9 (20), 343-371.