The U.S. News Short List, separate from our overall rankings, is a regular series that magnifies individual data points in hopes of providing students and parents a way to find which undergraduate or graduate programs excel or have room to grow in specific areas. Be sure to explore The Short List: College and The Short List: Grad School to find data that matters to you in your college or grad school search.
The number of international students in the United States continued its steady climb in the 2011-2012 school year.
The country welcomed 764,495 international students last school year – a record number and a nearly 6 percent increase over the previous year, according to a report by the Institute of International Education. The increase is fueled in part by a large influx of Chinese students, particularly at the undergraduate level. Scholarships from the Saudi Arabian government are also enabling Saudi undergraduates to arrive in the country in significant numbers.
Partly because of those increases, the number of international undergraduates studying in the United States has surpassed the number of international graduate students for the first time in 12 years, according to the report.
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The long-term increase of international students leads to various trends on college campuses. On the one hand, it encourages cultural understanding – both for American citizens and students from abroad. Increasingly, it also can mean more money for cash-strapped universities. In the last few years, several universities, including Purdue University and University of Illinois—Urbana-Champaign, have started to charge international students extra fees.
At the 12 National Universities with the highest percentages of international undergraduates, students from outside of the United States made up between 13 percent and 27 percent of the degree-seeking undergraduate student body in fall 2011. By comparison, the average percentage of international students for all National Universities ranked by U.S. News is 5 percent.
For the sixth year in a row, the New School, in New York, had the highest number of international undergraduate students, with 27 percent of its 7,081 students hailing from other countries.
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Among the 264 National Universities that reported international undergraduate student enrollment data for fall 2011 to U.S. News, 205 had international students who accounted for at least 2 percent of the student body.
National Universities, defined as schools that offer bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees and emphasize research, are obviously not the only institutions enrolling students from abroad. Some National Liberal Arts Colleges, Regional Universities and Regional Colleges also accept large percentages of international students.
These are the National Universities where international students make up the largest percentages of the degree-seeking undergraduate student body, based on school-reported enrollment data for fall 2011. Due to a tie, there are 12 schools on this list.
|National University (state)||Percentage of international students||Total undergraduate enrollment||U.S. News rank|
|New School (NY)||27%||7,081||125|
|Florida Institute of Technology||26%||2,724||160|
|Illinois Institute of Technology||21%||2,714||113|
|Lynn University (FL)||18%||1,619||RNP*|
|University of Tulsa (OK)||18%||3,004||83|
|Carnegie Mellon University (PA)||17%||6,281||23|
|University at Buffalo—SUNY (NY)||16%||19,334||106|
|Purdue University—West Lafayette (IN)||15%||30,776||65|
|Northeastern University (MA)||14%||12,913||56|
|Andrews University (MI)||13%||1,929||189|
|University of Illinois—Urbana-Champaign||13%||32,256||46|
|University of San Francisco||13%||6,051||106|
*RNP denotes an institution that is ranked in the bottom one fourth of its rankings category. U.S. News calculates a rank for the school but has decided not to publish it. Schools designated by U.S. News as Unranked were excluded from this list. U.S. News did not calculate a numerical ranking for Unranked programs because the program did not meet certain criteria that U.S. News requires to be numerically ranked.
U.S. News surveyed more than 1,800 colleges and universities for our 2012 survey of undergraduate programs. Schools self-reported a myriad of data regarding their academic programs and the makeup of their student body, among other areas, making U.S. News's data the most accurate and detailed collection of college facts and figures of its kind. While U.S. News uses much of this survey data to rank schools for our annual Best Colleges rankings, the data can also be useful when examined on a smaller scale. U.S. News will now produce lists of data, separate from the overall rankings, meant to provide students and parents a means to find which schools excel, or have room to grow, in specific areas that are important to them. While the data come from the schools themselves, these lists are not related to, and have no influence over, U.S. News's rankings of Best Colleges or Best Graduate Schools. The international undergraduate student enrollment data above are correct as of May 7, 2013.