November 17, 2014
By Elizabeth Redden
The number of international students enrolled at U.S. universities increased by 8.1 percent, to 886,052 in 2013-14, according to "Open Doors," an annual report on student mobility published by the Institute of International Education. The number of Americans studying abroad increased by 2.1 percent, to 289,408 in 2012-13.
There are few big surprises in the Open Doors data, which by and large reflect a continuation of recent trends. Indeed, international student enrollments at U.S. universities increased for the eighth consecutive year, with much of that growth once again being driven by a big increase in the number of students coming from the number-one sending country, China (up 16.5 percent). Chinese students now account for 31 percent of all international students in the U.S. -- up from 11 percent in 2000.
Given the large number of students involved, any sign of a change in the trend from China is closely watched. While data released last week by the Council of Graduate Schools showed that the number of first-time students from China at U.S. graduate schools dipped by 1 percent this fall, the Open Doors data -- which are for not this academic year but for the last -- showed increases in total enrollments from China at both the undergraduate and graduate levels (up 17.9 and 11.8 percent, respectively), as well as in non-degree programs such as English language courses (up 3 percent).
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