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Number of French Students in the U.S. Hits Record High

Number of French Students in the U.S. Hits Record High

Published on November 30, 2012

Enrollment of French students in the United States has risen to 8,232 students for the 2011-2012 academic year, according to the 2012 Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange published on Nov. 12 by the Institute of International Education (IIE), a U.S.-based not-for-profit educational and cultural exchange organization.

This statistic is up 16.8% since 2008, and demonstrates the upward trend of French enrollment in American institutions over the past seven years. The U.S. is the second-most popular destination for French students wishing to go abroad, behind the United Kingdom, according to the IIE.

France is the 15th leading place of origin of international students in American universities and colleges, up two places from last year, as the percentage of French students increased by 1.7% compared to 2010-2011.

A quarter of all French students in the U.S. are enrolled in non-degree programs, which are usually institutional exchange programs negotiated between American universities and France’s “grandes écoles”. Enrollment in such programs has risen 92.8% since 2008.

France is an equally popular destination for American students studying abroad. France has the 4th highest number of American students, behind the U.K., Italy and Spain, and had 17,019 Americans studying there during the 2010-2011 academic year. Most American students are not directly enrolled in French establishments, and instead take courses at American institutions in France or study abroad programs that offer specialized curriculums.

The Campus France service of the French Embassy promotes the French higher education system and facilitates the application process for American students, acting as a bridge between French and American universities.

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