NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Foreign Locales Attract U.S. Students

November 13, 2000

The Institute of International Education report also reveals that record numbers of U.S. students are supplementing their education with foreign study.

  • A record 129,770 U.S. students received college credit for study abroad in 1998-1999 -- a 14 percent increase from the previous year.
  • But the students are increasingly spending less time abroad than in the past -- more than half of them electing to take summer, January and other short-term programs instead of programs for the academic year or a semester.
  • Some 90 percent of U.S. students studying abroad did so for one semester or less in 1998-1999.
  • Brigham Young University sends the most students abroad -- followed by Michigan State University, the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Pennsylvania.

Some 68 percent of U.S. students head for Europe -- although the percentage of students studying there has declined steadily since 1985-1986. The percentage of students going to Latin America has doubled since then -- to 15 percent from 7 percent.

Source: Mary Beth Marklein, "More Studying Abroad, But for Less Time," USA Today, November 13, 2000.


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