According to UNESCO in their 2009 World Conference on Higher Education report, over 2.5 million students were studying outside their home country. UNESCO also predicted that the number of international students might rise to approximately 7 million by the year 2020. The main destinations preferred by international students are the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Canada and Australia.
One of the major factors behind the worldwide evolution of international education is a result of globalization, which has dramatically shriveled the world. Due to intensifying competition for overseas students amongst major English-speaking destination countries, higher educational institutions recognize the significance of quality education in the international arena.
Generally, international students as citizens of developing countries are required to obtain a student visa, which ascertains their legal status for staying in the foreign country. In most countries, before international students come to the country, the students must select a University or College to attend and to qualify for a student visa. The course of study and the type of University or College, an international student plans to attend determines the type of visa's needed. Each student visa applicant must prove they have the financial ability to pay for their tuition, books and living expenses while they study in a foreign country.
Prospective international students are usually required to sit for Academic language tests, such as IELTS, TOEFL, iTEP, PTE, DELF or DELE, etc depending on the countries before they are admitted. Tests notwithstanding, while some international students already possess an excellent command of the local language upon arrival, some find their language ability, considered excellent domestically, inadequate for the purpose of understanding lectures, and/or of conveying oneself fluently in rapid conversations.
Top 10 countries for international student enrollment
|Total number of international students