India Surpasses China With Most Active Student-Visa Holders in US, More Indians Also in Australia & UK

United States India North America International Studies Higher Education News by Erudera News Nov 08, 2023

people in Chicago, United States

India has overtaken China as the top source of international students in the United States for the first time in 15 years.

Data by the US Department of Homeland Security reveal there were over 320,000 Indians on active student visas as of September 2023. In comparison, there were 254,000 Chinese student-visa holders, Erudera.com reports.

According to a report by The Chronicle, new student visas are up nine percent from 2022 to the fall of 2023 and up 20 percent from 2019. The total number of F-1 visas issued by US consulates across the world reached more than 307,000.

Last year, Open Doors data showed that China was still leading with most students in the US. In the 2021/22 academic year, 290,086 students from China were studying at US universities, accounting for 30 percent of the total student population. However, that was an almost nine percent decrease compared to the previous year.

While the number of Chinese students in the US decreased in 2021/22, Indian student enrollment grew by nearly 20 percent compared to the previous academic year.

India remains one of the largest senders of international students worldwide. In addition to the US, the number of Indian students has also increased in other study destinations such as the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Australia.

The United Kingdom has recorded a significant rise of 54 percent in the number of sponsored visas issued to Indian students this year, totalling 142,848. According to the UK Home Office data, that is an increase of 49,883 visas from the year ending June 2022.

“Grants to study for Indian nationals have risen markedly since year ending June 2019 and are now around seven times higher,” the Home Office said in a statement.

Data also indicate that overall, the UK has issued about 500,000 student visas in the year ending June, a 23 percent increase compared to the previous year and a108 percent increase compared to 2019. About 154,000 of all sponsored study visas were issued to dependents of students.

Ireland has witnessed a 20 percent increase in international student population during the 2021/22 academic year, bringing the total number of students to 30,400. Of these, 4,000 were from India.

The number continued to increase in 2022/23 to a record high of 33,480 students, up 12 percent from 2021/22. According to projections, India will soon become the main source of international students in Ireland, overcoming the United States.

Similarly, the number of Indian students also increased in Australia this year during the January - April period, to 95,791, which was up from 75,109 in the same period a year earlier. Between January and May 2023, Australian universities welcomed a total of 47,759 Indian students.

India is the second largest source of international students in Australia, behind China.

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