USA Emerges as Top Destination for Indian Students Pursuing Higher Education Abroad, Oxford International’s SGMI Report Reveals

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Mumbai, 22nd April 2024: As the trend of Indian students seeking higher education abroad continues to soar, the release of the second edition of Oxford International’s Student Global Mobility Index (SGMI) report sheds light on intriguing insights into student migration patterns. Published today, the report unveils that despite concerns regarding affordability, safety, and security, the United States of America (USA) remains the preferred destination for 69% of surveyed Indian students, surpassing other countries like the UK (54%), Canada (43%), and Australia (27%).

Digging deeper, the study reveals that 45% of students prioritize the quality of education, while 42% emphasize the reputation of universities as crucial factors influencing their decision to pursue higher education in the USA. Conversely, for the UK, 59% of students highlight the quality of education, with 61% citing university reputation as key motivators.

A significant revelation from the SGMI survey is that approximately 71% of Indian students identify their parents or guardians as the primary influencers in their decision to pursue education abroad. This trend resonates across students from other countries such as Nigeria (72%), Pakistan (71%), and Vietnam (62%). Following closely, 44% of Indian students acknowledge their closest friends as secondary influencers in their decision-making process.

Mohit Gambir, Managing Director of Oxford International Education Services, commented on the study’s findings, stating, “The launch of the second edition of Oxford International’s Student Global Mobility Index is a milestone moment. In an era where global education transcends borders, the report illuminates the evolving landscape of higher education aspirations. It ranks the USA as the most preferred study destination, followed by the UK. Despite concerns about affordability and safety, the allure of quality education and esteemed universities remains paramount. Moreover, the significant role of parental influence underscores the profound familial impact on educational pursuits. As aspirations align with opportunities, the narrative of global student mobility continues to evolve, reflecting a mosaic of motivations and influencers shaping the educational journey.”

Conducted collaboratively by Oxford International and THE Knowledge Partnership, renowned specialists in global student research, the SGMI study encompasses a diverse sample size of over 500 current and prospective students. Participants were selected from key markets such as India, Pakistan, Vietnam, and Nigeria, providing comprehensive insights into the motivations and obstacles shaping the global student mobility landscape.

Other Key Findings:
– 28% of Indian students prioritize the UK for its affordable course fees, followed by Australia (20%), Canada (18%), and the USA (9%).
– Australia emerges as the preferred destination for applying for scholarships, with 34% of aspiring students selecting it, followed by Canada (32%), the UK (27%), and the USA (23%).
– Compared to Pakistan (23%) and Vietnam (22%), 35% of Indian and Nigerian students prefer engaging with higher education agents as their primary source of information during the decision-making process for selecting courses and universities.
– Parental influence is significant, with 71% of Indian students considering their parents or guardians as key decision-makers, mirroring trends observed in Nigeria (72%), Pakistan (71%), and Vietnam (62%).