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The Impact of International Students on US Colleges: Higher Education as a Service Export

Between 2005 and 2016, international enrollment in US higher education nearly doubled. I examine how trade shocks in education affect public universities' decision-making. I construct a shift-share instrument to exploit institutions' historical networks with different origins of international students, income growth, and exchange-rate fluctuations. Contrary to claims that US-born students are crowded out, I find that international students increase schools' funding via tuition payments, which leads to increased in-state enrollment and lower tuition prices. Schools also keep steady per-student spending and recruit more students with high math scores. Lastly, states allocate more appropriations to universities that attract fewer international students.

Keywords
Higher education, international student, university objective, service trade, education export
Education level
Document Object Identifier (DOI)
10.26300/x1wy-4d72

EdWorkingPaper suggested citation:

Chen, Mingyu. (). The Impact of International Students on US Colleges: Higher Education as a Service Export. (EdWorkingPaper: 21-405). Retrieved from Annenberg Institute at Brown University: https://doi.org/10.26300/x1wy-4d72

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