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Top 10 Places to Study Abroad 2020 - Rankings Rationale

At, our mission is to help everyone in the world find the right education. We know that international students have special considerations when choosing an ideal university and program, and our Top 10 Places to Study Abroad rankings are a major step towards helping them find their ideal study abroad destination!

We conducted a survey of over 30,000 students from around the world and asked them which factors they deemed most important when choosing which country to study abroad in. The top seven most important factors were used as the framework for our rankings.

These seven factors are:

  1. To achieve my career goals
  2. To develop myself personally
  3. To experience a new culture or lifestyle
  4. To access higher quality teaching
  5. To have an adventure
  6. To make new friends or widen my professional network
  7. To learn a new language

We then assigned the factors their corresponding quantitative metric (or weight) according to how many students selected that factor as important in their decision--making process. For example, 23% of students surveyed said it was important their study abroad country helped them achieve their career goals. So the "career goals" factor makes up 23% of each country's overall score.

Each factor's score, is made up of sub-scores based on a selection of external data sources (listed below). Each of these sub-scores was averaged out and added together to create a final score for that factor.

From there, we averaged out all of the factors and added them together to create a final score for each country. The top 10 places for each list are the countries with the highest final score.

View 2020 place rankings by region

Data sources and score weighting

1. To achieve my career goals

2. To develop myself personally

3. To experience a new culture or lifestyle

4. To access higher quality teaching

5. To have an adventure

6. To make new friends or widen my professional network

7. To learn a new language

Want the full rankings subscores data?

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Last update: 05 Feb 2020

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