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Indian Students’ Rising Preference for International Education Explained

The Surge in Indian Students Opting for International Education

The upward trend of Indian students seeking to study abroad is becoming quite remarkable, thanks largely to enhanced academic opportunities, better career prospects, and greater accessibility to study-abroad scholarships. A report by Bengaluru’s Redseer Strategy Consultants predicts a steep rise in the number of Indian students studying in foreign lands, estimating a figure of 1.8 million by 2024.

An increase of 68% was recorded in the number of Indian students studying abroad from 2021 to 2022, as shown by the data recently shared in the Parliament. This data reflects the number of students growing from 444,553 to a staggering 750,365 within a year.

Why the Preference to Study Abroad?

There are several contributing factors to this trend, as explained by experts. Piyush Kumar from IDP Education suggests the end of pandemic-related travel restrictions is playing a significant role. As global boundaries reopen, students are seizing the chance to execute their postponed plans and venture to foreign lands in search of the best country for study.

In addition to this, the emerging Indian economy is a considerable driver. The reality of competitive job markets and the scarcity of premier institutions within India has magnified the allure of degrees from globally recognized institutions. These degrees, according to Bhaskar Chakravorti from Tufts University, not only bestow prestige but also broaden students’ horizons.

The rise in disposable income amongst India’s middle class has opened new possibilities for students to study abroad. Economic slowdowns in regions like the US and EU, worsened by geopolitical conflicts such as the Ukraine issue, make international education more appealing.

Perks of International Education

Harsh Bharwani from Jetking Infotrain contends that institutions abroad frequently provide superior programs and facilities. According to him, studying abroad for Indian students can be highly beneficial, considering the modern technology, innovative research, and first-class faculty at overseas universities. These facilities give students a wider selection of disciplines to explore.

Moreover, graduates from renowned foreign universities often have an edge in the job market. Employers tend to value the rigorous education these institutions provide, producing graduates with desirable skills. Moreover, the experience of studying internationally offers an opportunity to immerse in diverse cultures, boosting one’s intercultural communication skills.

Facilitating Factors for Studying Abroad

The rising number of Indian high school graduates combined with a scarcity of high-quality tertiary institutions in India also plays a role in this shift. Post-study work opportunities in many countries, easy access to educational loans, and scholarships for Indian students to study abroad further propel this trend.

The process of securing scholarships and financial aid to study abroad has become significantly smoother. Numerous universities offer financial assistance to foreign students, substantially reducing their tuition and living expenses. Plus, improved travel facilities and easier access to information are adding momentum to this trend.

Indian students primarily opt for English-speaking countries such as the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and Ireland for their studies. The attraction towards these nations is primarily due to their top-tier universities, specialized courses, and favourable post-study work rights.

Countries like Australia and Canada have further attracted Indian students by relaxing restrictions on part-time employment, enabling many to repay their education loans swiftly while enhancing their overall student experience.

This upward trend of Indian students seeking to study abroad is an interesting paradigm shift that speaks volumes about the evolving landscape of global higher education. It also emphasizes the importance of opening up more opportunities and improving the quality of education at home to retain and nurture the bright minds within the country.

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