CANADA Universities Focus on Internationalization

Source: The PIE News

According to a survey carried out by The Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, compared to eight years ago internationalization is considered a “top priority” at 82 percent of Canadian universities, up from 70 percent. Preparing internationally knowledgeable graduates and promoting strategic alliances abroad remain the top motivators for internationalization but reputation and revenue have also become key factors driving development, according to the report, Canada’s Universities in the World.

Nine out of 10 institutions said that the pace of internationalization on their campuses has accelerated during the past three years, while 96 percent said they ensure internationalization is integrated into strategic plans. Universities remain heavily focused on international undergraduate recruitment, named as a priority by 70 percent of institutions, but recruitment plans are becoming more strategic. Fewer universities have a target number of international undergraduate students for recruitment than eight years ago (42 percent from 60 percent), but just over three-quarters of institutions identified geographical priorities for recruiting degree-seeking international students.

Four out of five universities surveyed offer some kind of international program with international partners. Dual or double degree programs in particular have boomed and are now offered by 78 percent of institutions, up from 48 percent in 2006. However, there remains a huge discrepancy between inbound and outbound movement. Just 3 percent of full time undergraduates (about 25,000 students) studied abroad in 2012-13. This is despite 97 percent of Canadian universities offering some variety of international experience.