International Students: The State of the Market

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With international students forming a vital part of our economy as well as universities’ income, advanced higher education analytics have never been so important…



Number of International Students 2011-12

435,230 international students

  • Full-time undergraduate study up 8%
  • Full-time research postgraduates up 5%
  • Full-time ‘other’ postgraduates up 2%

International students make up…

  • 13% of all first degree students
  • 46% of all taught postgraduates
  • 41% of all research postgraduates

Fee income raised by international students in Sheffield in 2012/13: £104.5 million.

Top 3 Nationalities of International Students Top 3 Nationalities of EU Students
China (PRC) 78,715 Germany 15,985
India 29,900 Republic of Ireland 15,075
Nigeria 17,620 France 12,835

Fear Factor…

Despite the concern that international students won’t leave once they have finished their education…

Just 6% of non-EU students want UK residency

Extreme Measures

But fears still remain that some international students won’t leave when they’re supposed to…

Finger scanners are to be introduced to prove students are attending lectures

The Bottom Line

According to the Institute for Public Policy Research, the government’s policy of ‘bearing down’ on student migration could…

  • Cause a reduction of 50,000 international students per year
  • Leading to the UK losing £2–3 billion per year in economic contributions.


With higher education analytics, universities can monitor trends in international student applications, including:

  • Where they are from.
  • The courses they are applying for.
  • The level of study they are applying for.

So universities can make the most of higher education analytics to:

  • Better target their marketing efforts.
  • Attract more international students.
  • Generate more income.


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