About International Education and Its Benefits

The Many Benefits of Study Abroad

Secretary Clinton's remarks on International Education


Language leaning


Global Learning and Development

Career Development

International Education in Facts and Figures

Open Doors (Institute of International Education) 2011 Fast Facts

Open Doors (Institute of International Education)

UNESCO Map Highlights Global Student Mobility. Search the Global Flow of Tertiary-Level Students

The Value of International Students to the U.S. and State Economies in 2012

The economic impact of foreign students on the Maine economy

Study Abroad Participation by State 2010-2011

  • International exchanges are critical to developing mutual understanding and respect, building leadership abroad, fostering an appreciation for the U.S., and investing in the future relationship between Americans and people around the world.
  • International education prepares U.S. citizens to live, work, and compete in the global economy.
  • International education is also a vital service industry, bringing more than $21 billion into the U.S. economy in 2010/11.
  • The economic impact of foreign students on the Maine economy is $40,548,000
  • The more than 40,000 students, scholars and other exchange participants that the Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs supports are in the vanguard of the hundreds of thousands of students and scholars who come to the United States and study abroad each year.
  • International cooperation on education contributes to education reform and education solutions for the U.S. and for our partner nations.
  • 270,604 U.S. students studied abroad in 2009/10 (Open Doors)
  • 723,277 international students studied in the U.S. in 2010/11 (Open Doors)
  • Just over one percent of all U.S. students enrolled in U.S. higher education at any academic level typically study abroad during any single academic year. Among students pursuing Bachelor’s degrees, about 14 percent study abroad at some point during their undergraduate programs.
  • The United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, France and China, remained the top host destinations
  • Latin America hosted 15 percent of all Americans studying abroad, Asia hosted 12 percent, Oceania – which includes Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific Islands -- hosted five percent, and Africa hosted six percent.
  • The leading fields of study for Americans studying abroad are the social sciences (22 percent of those studying abroad), business and management (21 percent), humanities (12 percent), fine or applied arts (8 percent), physical/life sciences (8 percent), foreign languages (6 percent), health sciences (5 percent), education (4 percent), engineering (4 percent), math/computer science (2 percent) and agriculture (1 percent).
  • 93.8% of U.S. students who studied abroad last year stayed for one semester or less. Over 55% of undergraduate and master's degree students elected to complete summer, January-term, internship, or other short-term programs instead of academic-year or semester-long programs.
  • 43% of college freshmen consider "improving my understanding of other countries and cultures" to be an essential or very important objective of their undergraduate education.
  • In recent years, about 50% of Colby ‘s junior class studies off-campus for a semester/year. The number is 70% including off-campus study during Jan Plan.
  • Top destinations for Colby students have been UK (England & Scotland), France, Spain, Australia, Denmark, Italy, New Zealand and China.
  • Colby's international students—who come from more than 60 countries and make up roughly 11 percent of the student body—contribute to and benefit from that type of education at Colby.
  • Colby’s international students come from: Afghanistan, Albania, Argentina, Austria, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Bermuda, Bhutan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Estonia, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Georgia, Great Britain, Greece, Guatemala, Hong Kong, India, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Lebanon, Mexico, Micronesia, Mongolia, Nepal, Netherlands, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Republic of Korea, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Uganda, Venezuela, Vietnam, Zimbabwe
  • The top 10 majors studying off-campus include Global Studies, Economics, Government, Biology, English, Psychology, Environmental Studies, French Studies, Mathematical Sciences (Dartmouth), Spanish
  • 37% of Colby students who study off-campus are double majors
International Education Week

Each November, the U.S. Department of State / U.S. Department of Education and colleges/universities around the world celebrate International education Week (IEW). IEW is an opportunity to celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange worldwide. This annual initiative aims to promote international understanding and build support for international educational exchange by encouraging the development of programs that prepare Americans to live and work in a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study in the United States.