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International Students in the United States and Study Abroad by U.S. Students Reach Record Highs

Fact Sheet
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
November 12, 2013


The 2013 Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange, released November 11, reports that the number of international students at institutions of higher education in the United States increased by 7.2 percent to a record 819,644 students in the 2012/13 academic year, while the number of U.S. students studying abroad expanded by 3.4 percent to an all-time high of 283,332 in 2011/12.

  • This is the seventh consecutive year that Open Doors reported expansion in the total number of international students in U.S. higher education. There are now 40 percent more international students studying at U.S. colleges and universities than a decade ago; 55,000 more international students enrolled in U.S. colleges and universities compared to academic year 2011/12.
  • International students’ spending in all 50 states contributed approximately $24 billion to the U.S. economy.
  • The greatest growth in international student numbers was driven by Brazilian, Chinese and Saudi Arabian students with 20.4 percent, 21.4 percent and 30.5 percent increases respectively.
  • Study abroad by U.S. students has quadrupled over the past two decades, from approximately 71,000 students in 1991/92 to 283,332. The number of U.S. students who studied abroad for academic credit increased by over three percent to 283,332 students in 2011/12, a higher rate of growth than the one percent increase the previous year.
  • The range of study abroad destinations continue to expand with increasing numbers of U.S. students choosing nontraditional locations, such as Asia, Latin America, and Sub-Saharan Africa.

For information on our programs visit or email For further information on the Open Doors Report visit

PRN: 2013/1384

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