US universities remain top choice for international students from India and China
March 3, 2011
Trends in selecting study abroad programs show top-ranking universities in the USA as the destination of choice for Chinese and Indian students.
American universities are recognized as worldwide leaders in the higher education sector for the academic rigor and practical experience they offer. A degree from an accredited US university is sought-after by students around the world for its high value in the global academic and business worlds. Universities in USA are particularly popular with students from China and India, these countries being the highest exporters of international students to the USA.
Recent data and analysis published by World Education Services reviews the trends developing among Indian and Chinese students in their selection of higher education institutes and what they value about US universities.
35 universities in the USA rank among the top 50 in the world
Given the competitiveness of admission to top-ranking universities in their own countries, many students prepare instead for the TOEFL and SAT to try for a place at university in the USA. US universities are in high demand because they dominate international university rankings. Rankings are seen to convey status, reputation and prestige.
Post-graduation work and immigration opportunities
Post-graduation Optional Practical Training (OPT) opportunities in the United States allow students to add US workplace training to their academic qualifications. Today's students know that a degree from an international institution, combined with real-life business skills developed by international work experience, will be highly valued by multinational and local companies. Workplace training and immigration opportunities translate to a faster return on investment.
Wide range of subjects to study in the US
While the demand for US undergraduate degree and graduate degree programs in the sciences, computer technology, engineering, mathematics, accounting and business remains high, there is a growing interest in the humanities and social sciences. Students from India and China are ready to explore alternate career paths in architecture, communications, performing arts, law and education fields.
US degree programs balance theoretical and practical knowledge
The quality of education in the United States is the major motivating factor for international students. A US degree is perceived as a mark of superior academic and practical training owing to the student-centered teaching methods. Students are drawn by the world-class learning facilities combined with opportunities to work with leading researchers. Parents and students appreciate the practical 'soft skills' that a US university education offers, such as creativity, collaboration skills and risk-taking.
US universities offer international exposure
Investment in an international higher education is increasingly seen as a valued path to a better future. Indian students appreciate the diverse living and learning environment offered at universities in the USA. Chinese students want to study in the USA for the international experience and English-language fluency. US universities offering ESL program entry routes to degrees are popular among students who need to improve their English language skills.
In general, three factors - a university's ranking, field of study options and cost - are equally weighted in the minds of students and parents. Students believe the most competitive institutions will best serve their long-term interests - jobs and earning potential. The rapidly growth of multinational corporations, and the economies of India and China, have created a high requirement for globalized professionals. A US university education successfully fills that demand.
With US universities keen on promoting international diversity on their campuses, the overall trend in enrolling international students seems to continue on its steady upward course.