Some of China’s regional neighbors are becoming popular choices for Chinese choosing to study abroad, according to a survey.
They join traditional destinations such as the United States and Britain.
Asian countries, including Singapore and Japan, are attracting more Chinese planning to study overseas, according to a White Paper on Chinese studying abroad in 2016.
The paper was released on Tuesday by Vision Overseas, a company under New Oriental Education & Technology Group that provides services for overseas studies.
The survey questioned nearly 3,000 Chinese students planning to study overseas and found fewer were willing to study in the US, the UK, Australia and Canada when compared with 2015.
The proportion of those showing an interest in countries such as Singapore and Japan is rising.
Guo Xiaojuan, director of Vision Overseas’ European and Asian Division, said the fact that the two Asian countries have become more popular with Chinese students is due to their strengthened quality of education and booming tourism industries.
“The education systems in the two countries are quite open and well developed. Many of their universities are also rated highly in the latest world university rankings,” Guo said.
Sun Tao, vice-president of the company, said the four traditional destinations do not have to worry about losing their leading positions.
“In the long run, the four countries will remain the top choices for Chinese studying overseas,” Sun said.
“But what is certain, is that Chinese students’ choices for overseas study will continue to diversify. The rise of Singapore and Japan is just a start.”
The survey also found that choosing the right major is the top consideration for Chinese students and their parents when selecting an overseas educational institution.
The ranking of the institution is the second most important factor they consider, while a year ago, institutions’ rankings were the main concern.
Sun said, “A great change has occurred among Chinese students, and especially their parents, who were known for choosing prestigious universities.
“The change indicates that students and their parents are becoming more rational when making decisions on studying overseas.”