College Indian students have always been interested to study abroad. Statistics show that more than 800,000 Indian students go abroad to study at various Universities. Indian students comprise of a large portion of the international student’s community. In 2018, International students contribute £20bn to the UK economy, similar contribution is made to economies of other countries like USA, Canada and other English-speaking countries.
This showcases the role of Indian students in the economy of these countries and revenue of the Universities. Not only financially, international students also bring a unique flavor of their own countries and education system which add multifaced growth in the learning system of these countries.
With the growth in online education and considering the future of the education delivery model, it is widely accepted that students are getting more friendly to online education which is widening its reach and thereby allowing students to explore boundless education and learning possibilities. Since the COVID period, students feel more comfortable in reaching out to other students, eminent professors through different online platforms. This effort from the students is being reciprocated by professors as well as all of them are investing more time online than before. It is becoming very easy now to study in a University and simultaneously interact with students of other University’s which could be 2000 miles away from you. This, in turn, is easily turning a native student into a truly international student which I strongly believe is version 2.0 of International Students.
“Another interesting characteristic of this version 2.0 International Students is their keen interest in alternate skill development1”
Another interesting characteristic of this version 2.0 International Students is their keen interest in alternate skill development. You can derive this from the below figures. More than 200,000 students in this year have enrolled for “Fundamentals of Music” which is available on a famous online learning website. This is not a rare result, but multiple such courses are now popular on different online and eLearning platforms where thousands of students are enrolling each day. This is a unique trend arising during the COVID period and again justifies the true essence of version 2.0.
This online new world has broken the “we” community of international students. This ‘we’ feeling was prominent in the Universities where international students were comfortable in their own groups comprising of people belonging to the same place. This is common in all of us but somewhere this was restricting their learning as they all were influenced by similar education systems and source origins. Now, with increasing version 2.0 of international students becoming the new trend, knowledge sharing and sharing of best practices has become border less with no physical limitations. With the prominence of online and blended study, I am very proud to see the “International Students version 2.0”.