Indian and Chinese Students in Canada: Contrasting Enrollment Patterns

Growth of Indian students in Canada data

Canada remains a highly attractive destinations for international students with its immigration-friendly policies. According to the recent data from IRCC there were 572,415 study permit holders in Canada on December 31 2018 – a 16% increase from the previous year. India overtook China, with 172,625 study permit holders in the country, a 40% increase since 2017, compared to China’s 142,985 and 2% growth.

Much of the growth of Indian students came through the colleges as compared to universities. Here is my quote from The PIE News on the stark contrast of enrollment of Chinese and Indian students in Canada.

Canadian colleges, offering technical and career-oriented programs with cheaper fees than universities and pathways to work and permanent residence (Post Graduate Work Permit-PGWP) are a winning card for price-sensitive Indian students – while “prestige-conscious” Chinese students are not enrolling in the colleges at the same rate. This growth of Indian students is too quick and too soon, which poses risk not only for institutions but also for students. A change in visa policies or regulatory requirements may create serious reversal of trends. This is the prime time for institutions to identify and invest in alternative countries to mitigate some of the risks.

Enrollment statistics comparing India and China in Canada



– Rahul Choudaha