Nov 18, 2013

Top Colleges for Study Abroad

UDel is usually credited with having the first study abroad program

While the University of Delaware is usually credited with organizing the first study abroad program during the summer of 1923, there are those at Indiana University who believe a program initiated by IU in the 1870’s really marked the beginnings of what has since become an educational revolution.

Regardless of which story you believe, the push toward opening the world to undergraduate study has grown beyond the imaginations of even the most ardent believers in global education.

A new report by the Institute of International Education (IIE) shows that the number of U.S. students who studied abroad for academic credit increased to 283,332 students during the 2011-12 academic year—a three percent increase from the previous year and an all-time high.

“International education promotes the relationship building and knowledge exchange between people and communities in the United States and around the world that are necessary to solve global challenges,” said Evan M. Ryan, Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs. “The connections made during international education experiences last a lifetime.”

According to the 2013 Open Doors survey, the United Kingdom continues to be the leading destination for American students, followed by Italy, Spain, France, and China, which remained the fifth largest host destination for the sixth consecutive year.   

There were also significant increases in the number of Americans studying in “non-traditional” destinations outside of Europe, including Brazil, China, Costa Rica, India, and South Korea. And there was a rebound in those going to Japan as programs reopened in Fall 2011 after the earthquake and tsunami disasters.

A number of local colleges and universities were among the schools with the highest undergraduate participation rates for study abroad. American University (72.4%), Georgetown University (52.1%), the College of William & Mary (45.7%), George Washington (53.9%), and UVa (32.3%) were in the top 40 doctorate institutions. Loyola University of Maryland (54.3%) came in 11th among master’s institutions, and Goucher (125%*), the University of Richmond (82.6%), St. Mary’s College of Maryland (79.7%) and Washington and Lee University (79.3%) were listed as top 40 baccalaureate institutions.

Study abroad by American students has more than tripled over the past two decades.  In fact, Open Doors reports that 35 campuses had study abroad participation rates of more than 70 percent of their total student population.

The following are the top 10 doctorate institutions by undergraduate participation:

Boston College (74.5%)
American University (72.4%)
University of San Diego (68.6%)
University of Denver (67%)
University of Notre Dame (65.9%)
Dartmouth College (64.6%)
New York University (62.5%)
Pepperdine University (62.5%)
Yale University (60.1%)
Wake Forest University (59.9%)

And the top 10 baccalaureate institutions by undergraduate participation:

Soka University of America (138.3%)
Webber International University (134.8%)
Centre College (132.4%)
Taylor University (128.9%)
Goucher College (125%)
DePauw University (113.4%)
Wofford College (109.7%)
Austin College (107.7%)
Colorado College (91.9%)
Saint Olaf College (91.6%)

And once again, NYU wins the top award for sending the most students abroad—4,378.  The University of Texas—Austin (2,596) and the University of Minnesota—Twin Cities (2,508) came in second and third respectively.

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