June 14, 2009
June 14, 2009
June 17, 2009
14.788.1 - 14.788.10
International Graduate Students’ Challenges: A Survey-based Study
Over the last several decades, the graduate programs in North America have included a large percentage of international students. A majority of the students, particularly in engineering, originate from India and China. These two countries have seen considerable growth in technology and engineering education in recent years. The changing socio-economic global scenario, strict immigration policies, and other challenges faced by international students in the United States have influenced the recruitment and retention of the best and brightest international graduate students into domestic programs. By working to understand the globally changing environment, challenges faced by international students can be better understood and mitigated, helping to provide an educated workforce to meet the growing demand for engineers in the U.S. In this present work, a survey was conducted to evaluate the various challenges faced by international students from many institutions across the country. The survey results presented here focused on major concerns and a student’s criterion to decide about graduate school. Responses based on nationality and genders are described.
Interests in international student education have increased in the past couple of decades for a number of reasons. Most of the countries are recognizing the need of global consciousness in order for them to compete in the global education and economy. At present, about 2 million students worldwide study outside of their home countries with the U.S. being the leading country to enroll most of the international students1.
In a survey conducted jointly by the American Council on Education (ACE), the Association of American Universities (AAU), the Council of Graduate Schools (CGS), NAFSA: Association of International Educators, and the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges (NASULGC), around 250 institutions provided data regarding graduate applications from international students. Nearly half (47%) indicated a decline in applications, 38% thought application rates had not changed, and 14% indicated an increase in application numbers. All of these respondents indicated declines in international graduate applications2. In 2007, a survey was carried out by the Institute of International Education (IIE) in cooperation with American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), American Council on Education (ACE), Association of American Universities (AAU), Council of Graduate Schools (CGS), NAFSA: Association of International Educators, and National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges (NASULGC)3. Totally, 700 institutions responded to the survey. The results indicate that new enrollments at most of the U.S. institutions seem to be increasing, with respondents reporting more increases than declines (although growth rate has declined). Twenty-two percent of the responding institutions experiencing declines in international student enrollments cited rigorous visa application processes and concerns over delays/denials as the major reason for the decline, followed by cost of tuition/fees at U.S. institutions and decisions to enroll in institutions within another country. Several educators believe the declines reflect a combination of several factors,
Srivastava, S., & Minerick, A., & Srivastava, A., & Schulz, N. (2009, June), International Graduate Students’ Challenges: A Survey Based Study Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. https://peer.asee.org/5609
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