Want to know the number of Indian students studying abroad? Well, over 580 million of India’s population fall into the 5-24 year age bracket. Many of these students look at schools and colleges abroad for their higher education and this number has been steadily increasing.
From 2016 to 2019, it climbed from 440,000 to 770,000. In 2021, there were 1,133,749 Indian students abroad and in a few years, it’s likely to reach 1,800,000.
Indian Students Studying Abroad – Top Destinations
Indian students apply to universities in half the total number of countries in the world. Even countries in Africa appeal to a certain section of Indian students. That said, there are some countries that are more attractive to the average student population.
According to a study, the UAE attracted the most students as of July 2021. Canada ranked second and the USA came in third.
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Other countries that attract a high number of Indian students are Australia, Saudi Arabia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Oman, China, Germany, Ukraine, Russia and the Philippines.
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Indian Students Studying Abroad – What Do They Study?
Most students prefer to step overseas for a post-graduate education rather than their undergraduate education. However, according to a 2019 study, the opposite is true in Australia.
|Country||Undergraduate Students||Postgraduate Students|
70% of Indian students move abroad for specialized courses while 30% enroll in general degree courses.
Why Do Indian Students Go Abroad?
Going abroad to study is not a new phenomenon for Indians. For decades, Indian undergraduates and graduates have been looking at developed nations as well as developing ones as destinations for higher studies.
For the last two years, as countries kept their borders closed to fight the pandemic, these numbers may have dropped but the trend is changing once more. About 0.6 million Indians went overseas to study in 2019 and this number is expected to rise.
What Stage of Education Do Children Move Abroad For?
Indian families are closely knit and unlike many countries abroad, it isn’t unusual for children stay with their parents even as young adults. While every parent wants what is best for their child, Indian parents worry about sending their children abroad while they are too young. I
t is rare for an Indian to go abroad while he or she is still in school. Undergraduates make up 80% of the Indian student population abroad while postgraduates account for 20%.
It is interesting to note that most undergraduates who move abroad are driven to do so by their families but postgraduates choose their educational route independently.
Most Indians Choose Anglophile Countries
70% of the Indian students who go abroad choose anglophile countries. The UK is expected to see a 600% rise in the number of Indian students as compared to 2019.
Since English is not the natural mother tongue for many Indians, passing English language tests are an important part of the moving abroad process.
The IELTS and TOEFL are the most popular English language tests to certify fluency. While the number of students taking the tests has reduced – mostly because of the pandemic, the change in preference for language fluency tests has been minimal in the last few years.
In 2019, 1.6 million students took the IELTS while 1.4 million took the test in 2021. Similarly, 0.35 million and 0.32 students took the TOEFL test in 2019 and 2021 respectively.
The Experience Is Being Digitized
Most students, even those in Tier 2+ cities, looking at colleges overseas are well versed with digital media. From school websites to social media, much of the information they need is found online. Digital access to information has been furthered by the pandemic.
This holds true for the admission process as well as student placements. Rather than fight the trend, many counselors are riding the wave and improving their digital presence. Many are also offering virtual counseling sessions for prospective students.
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