Growth in Foreign Grad Students

First-time enrollments of international students in U.S. graduate schools grew by 5 percent between fall 2014 and 2015, a slowdown from the 8-10 percent growth rate seen in the past few admissions cycles but higher than the rate of growth for domestic students (2 percent).

For the first time this year the Council of Graduate Schools’ annual survey of new international student enrollments breaks down the data according to degree level. More than three-quarters (77 percent) of first-time international graduate students are enrolled in master’s and certificate programs. The remaining proportion of international graduate students who start in doctoral programs is, at 23 percent, slightly higher than the proportion of domestic graduate students (19 percent) who do the same.

"It’s really an encouraging sign that these students are taking advantage of our master’s education, not just doctoral or research studies," said Hironao Okahana, CGS's director of statistical analysis and policy research.

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