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Int’l applicants determined to study abroad

Some 69% of international students with offers from universities expect to start their studies as planned, with a further 5% saying they no longer expected to, according to a survey published by  IDP Connect.

Students would prefer to defer over starting classes online. Photo: Pixabay

Most students would prefer to delay studying until 2021 as opposed to commencing their courses online

According to the ‘International Student Crossroads’ survey, which examined international student applicants’ attitudes and motivations for studying abroad in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, just over a quarter (26%) were unsure as to whether or not they would commence studies as planned.

The survey covered nearly 6,900 applicants planning to study in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK and US.

“It is crucial that we all work together”

“Given the unprecedented challenges the global community is facing, it is encouraging to know the vast majority of students surveyed state their perception of their study destination had not changed and they were holding on to their international education plans,” IDP Education CEO, Andrew Barkla, said.

However, Barkla said that while this is somewhat reassuring, there are several barriers that will impact institutions’ abilities to meet this demand, “such as ongoing travel restrictions and social distancing measures”.

“It is crucial that we all work together to find ways of ensuring students and receiving countries can continue to experience the benefits of international education,” he said.

The survey further showed that students would prefer to delay studying until 2021 as opposed to commencing their courses online, particularly at the postgraduate level.

Among students who preferred to defer than study online, 69% said studying online “lacked international exposure” and 47% were concerned about standards.

“31% of respondents stated they would be willing to start their course online and move to face-to-face learning at a later date, but by far the greatest preference was to defer to January 2021 if this meant face-to-face learning would be possible,” IDP Connect CEO, Simon Emmett, said.

“More than half of all students were only willing to defer up to 12 months or less before changing their plans or exploring other study options.

“This creates a narrow opportunity for destination markets and institutions who rely on September intake,” he added.

Participants were also asked to rate prospective host countries out of 10 in terms of how the coronavirus has impacted perceptions. The US and to a lesser extent the UK scored less than their Canadian and antipodean counterparts.

However, all scored between six and seven in the “travel restriction policies” section, despite very different approaches to managing travel during the pandemic

The UK, for example, is one of only a handful of countries not to have closed its borders yet was still considered as restrictive as the others.

“While it is positive there is still strong demand, there is more work to be done”

Based on its findings, IDP recommended stakeholders “provide clarity where possible as to how and when face-to-face teaching will resume” and “build in capacity for large cohorts of students commencing face-to-face studies from January to May 2021”.

“While it is positive there is still strong demand, there is more work to be done,” Emmett noted.

“If destination countries and institutions are to meet this demand, governments, community services and the international education sector will need to come together to find solutions that enable students to arrive in-country and commence face-to-face studies soon.”

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7 Responses to Int’l applicants determined to study abroad

  1. Current international student are yet to recover from the global crisis and our visas are expiring soon without any consideration.
    In Uk,4 month was given to get international work experiences but the covid19 affect adversely and the government are not giving us additional time to make it up.For 2 months now,we have been in lockdown situation and we are waiting till 31st of May to leave the country.

  2. I am international atudent nurse who has more than ten years expirience just completed my Bsc here in the uk .and curently working as a clinical support worker with the NHS .as i have enrolled for the ielts exam .in order to get the job and fit into working as a nurse in the uk .despite aspiring to go for masters but visa is due to expire in july.but not really certain on what will happen next all fingers cross because i have be one of the front line support worker in the covid unit in the trust.what do i do?

  3. I can understand your plight. That is one of the major problems International professionals face in a foreign land. NHS is a health recognized body, they can assist you in sponsoring your working visa while you enroll for your English and Nursing Board exams. You would have finished your Nursing pre.requisite exams while in school so that you have a smooth, transition. Nevertheless, something can happen. The best of luck.

  4. I’m glad to joined many of my friends who suggested that due the this virus out break, I will also consider to defer my admission for the September intake to January 2021. Reason for my decesion is just very simple because right there is a serious disruptions in all my plans which includes financial as well.

  5. Hello, Its challenging that my intake was to start on May 01 2020 in the university of Windsor Canada, however this Covid-19 situation has disrupted my travel to Canada,
    The embassy had not yet returned my visa/passport.
    I hope the immigration considers us students who had admissions and hadn’t received our study visas.
    And I suggest the intakes start in September 2020.

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