Study Explores Australian Student International Mobility

By Editorial 27 August, 2013

A new Australian "snapshot" of outbound student mobility in 2011 has highlighted the popularity of short-term courses in Asia, and warned that any move to prescribe a minimum one-semester period for a course abroad to count as credit would write off 82 percent of Australian study experiences in Asia and 85 percent of experiences in China.

The report, compiled by independent higher education consultancy SPRE, explains that one in eight completing Australian undergraduates at Australian universities studies abroad, and in 2011 this was for credit in 94.3 percent of instances. Of those who choose to study abroad, 6.5 percent go overseas for one year, 36.7 percent for a semester, and 56.8 percent for short periods of less than a semester. The top six long-term destinations are the US, the UK, Canada, France, Germany, and Sweden, while destinations in Asia attract only 15 percent.

However, for short-term programs, the top locations are China, Italy, US, India, France, and Indonesia, and Asia accounts for 52 percent of short-term overseas study experiences for Australian students. Also, 44 percent of those going abroad for internships and practical training head for Asia.

The report argues that short-term international study is important for diversifying Australian student mobility away from exchanges with the US, the UK and Canada, where students will gain credit for studying the same sorts of subjects in English as they could study in Australia. Imposing minimum study limits would "impose a US centric model on all international study destinations globally," it says.

Tags: Australia | Education | Expats | Education |


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