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Foreign students in higher education in France 2017-2018, by degree course

Between 2017 and 2018, most international students in France have chosen to study Business, Management, Sales or Accounting. Foreign students in these degree courses represented almost 18 percent of all foreign students in France, followed by university degrees which have attracted 15 percent of international students in the country.

Who are the international students in France?

France attracted many international students willing to attend some of its Business and Engineering Schools, as well as universities. The majority of them comes from outside the European Union (EU). Students from North Africa and Asia are the most populous among foreign students in higher education institutions in France. However, France is part of the Erasmus program and also welcomes young people from other European countries. In 2012, more than 50 thousand students from Europe came to study in France. France was for example the second most popular destination among Italian students.

And where do the French studying abroad go?

If France is a host country for international students, it appears the French do study abroad too. In 2018, a majority of French students declared that they were willing to do their studies in a foreign country. The ones who take the plunge mainly choose Europe as their destination. Thus, France was the second most common European Union country of domicile for international students in the United Kingdom

Distribution of foreign students enrolled in higher education in France between 2017 and 2018, by type of degree course

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Release date

August 2019



Survey time period

 2017 to 2018

Special properties

Metropolitan France and overseas

Supplementary notes

* Set of non-university engineering courses

** Including high schools of architecture, journalism and communication.

*** Includes private universities, paramedical and social schools, ENS (École normale supérieure), legal and administrative schools, etc.

**** STS: senior technician section.

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