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Read the latest trends in international education in the latest Open Doors report.

2012 Open Doors Report Released

November 19, 2012

On November 12, 2012, the Institute of International Education (IIE) released the annual Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange, which presents the latest trends on international education. The Open Doors Report provides data on international students who study in the United States and American students who study abroad.

There were several key findings from this year’s report, including:

  • International students contributed $22.7 billion to the United States economy.
  • There are more international students studying in the United States than ever before; this year, that number increased by six percent to 764,495 students.
  • For the first time, undergraduate international students in the United States in 2011-2012 outnumbered graduate international students.
  • China was the top country of origin for the third year in a row.
  • Students from the top five countries of origin (China, India, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, and Canada) comprised 56 percent of all international students.
  • 44 percent of international students in the United States are women.  In 1980, the first year that the Open Doors Report was published, female international students represented only about 25 percent of all international students. 
  • About 41 percent of international students are studying in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) fields.

IIE reports that, “the strong increase in international student enrollments shows the continued conviction of international students (and parents) that a U.S. degree is a sound investment in their future careers, a finding reinforced by results of recent IIE surveys of students overseas considering studying outside their own countries.”

We created an infographic from the Open Doors data to further highlight the report’s key findings.

To read the full Open Doors Report and to view the briefing presentation, visit

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