Canada’s elite universities attract massive number of international students

Written by Eliott C. McLaughlin, CNN

Reforms in Canada to the country’s university system are underway, including an increase in postgraduate degrees.

But another area of the higher education system in the country is growing: international students.

Canada is the third largest destination for international education after the United States and Britain, according to new data released by the 2018 National International Study Plan survey . According to the report, the number of international students studying in Canada rose by 4.3% last year to 208,000.

Competition between countries for foreign students is no secret, and Canada has taken steps to promote its international education sector, including lobbying to set up hubs at the US-Canada border so that students traveling to campuses in English-speaking countries can quickly connect.

The data from 2018, released by U.S.-based Navigant, shows that British and American universities are leading in the number of foreign students studying in Canada, but the biggest surge is in Canadian universities enrolling their first cohort of international students, primarily for undergraduate and graduate studies.

Despite Ontario’s best efforts to attract international students, it received a D in its international-education ranking.

Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that Canada is a net importer of foreign students, rather than a net exporter.

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