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International students continue to choose to study in Australia in record numbers – citing the very high quality and reputation of Australian universities.

A record 554,179 students chose courses in Australia last year, a hefty 10 percent increase over 2015, according to the latest Department of Education figures.

The latest survey of international students shows that overall a record 89 percent of students – or nine in ten – were either satisfied or very satisfied with their education in Australia.

Overwhelmingly students chose to study in Australia because of the reputation of the higher education system, of its institutions and the quality of research offered in Australia.

Universities Australia’s Chief Executive Belinda Robinson said the record student numbers and satisfaction levels underscored the importance of maintaining Government investment and policies to enhance and expand international education.

“Australia is absolutely a destination of choice for international students and that is a great success story for our country,” she said.

“International students invigorate our high quality education system, our economy, our society, culture and our global relationships.”

“The contribution of international students is critical as our economy continues to evolve to generate new knowledge-based industries and companies.”

International education exports have now reached a record $21.8 billion.

Beyond the direct income, it has enormous spill over effects for the broader economy through tourism, retail trade and opportunities for global research industry collaboration.

Through relationships established at Australian universities, international students and researchers build invaluable personal, diplomatic, cultural and business ties which underwrite our future prosperity.

Ms Robinson welcomed Education Minister Simon Birmingham’s comments today reaffirming the Turnbull Government’s commitment to support the sustainable growth of the international sector through the National Strategy for International Education 2025.

Universities Australia Media Contacts

Misha Schubert
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Bella Counihan
Ph: 02 6285 8123
Mobile: 0419 212 219 

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