Financial constraints imposed on higher education are forcing higher educational institutions (HEI) to commit themselves to quality standards and develop a market orientation strategy to differentiate themselves from competitors by providing high quality services, and have conduced HEI to look at international students as complementary sourcing revenue. Indeed, more and more students are seeking quality education abroad, in order to develop their personal abilities and skills, and today, in many universities all around the world, international students represent a significant market with their own needs and expectations. The main aim of this research is to analyse the relationship between international students’ perceived service quality and satisfaction, as well as to evaluate the role of organizational image on the relationship between both constructs, in the specific context of higher education institutions. A structural equation modelling approach is applied to data randomly collected from mobility students that are studying or have studied at Portuguese Universities. The results showed that the perceived service quality provided by the universities has a positive impact on students’ satisfaction, that perceived service quality has a positive impact on the organizational image, and that the organizational image has a positive impact on students’ satisfaction.
Keywords: higher education, international students, organizational image, satisfaction, service quality.