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Each year, lakhs of Indian students embark on a life-changing journey of studying abroad looking for limitless opportunities, improved standard of life, global exposure and most importantly to study a course that widens their career prospects and offers a high return on investment. They come across and through new challenges, cultures, diversity and experiences. The data from the Ministry of External Affairs states that as of January 2021, a total of 11,33,749 Indian students are studying abroad in over 99 countries.

Indian students are studying abroad in over 99 countries

There has been an increase in the number of new specialised courses introduced by the universities abroad. These specialised courses have increased the options of top courses to study abroad for Indian students. A study commissioned by Western Union shows that around 52% of Indian students who intend to study abroad prefer specialised courses over the reputation of the universities. The students often look beyond Ivy league universities to pick popular courses to study abroad that are relevant and suitable for them.

INTO University Partnerships carried out a survey in which more than 1250 Indian students took part. 78% of these students state that their decision to pick specialised and popular courses to study abroad was influenced by the covid-19 pandemic. Subjects related to health, climate change and advanced technology have caught the Indian students’ interest post-pandemic.

Pursuing top courses to study abroad for Indian students can be a costly affair. Based on the data from the aforementioned survey, 35% of the students choose their study abroad destination after calculating job prospects and return on investment they’ll be getting after finishing their studies in that country. Further, 33% choose it based on the education quality and 32% choose it for other reasons such as their course-related exposure and expertise they can get in that particular country.

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The students tend to narrow down their choices to the most in-demand and relevant courses that could land them a lucrative job. Courses in computer science, management, engineering and design are some of the most sought after courses by Indian students who plan on studying abroad. The percentage of Indian students with preference for these specialised courses is mentioned in the INTO University Partnership survey and is as follows–

  1. Engineering 18%
  2. Computer Science 12%
  3. Business Studies 11%
  4. Robotics and artificial intelligence 24%
  5. Healthcare 17%
  6. Climate change and environment 16%

University Partnership survey

The various top courses for Indian students to study abroad entail the following–


Engineering is one of the most popular courses among the Indian students to study abroad due to its wide range of career opportunities. With the advancement of technology, courses in computer science, information technology, biotechnology and environmental engineering are gaining students’ interests. These courses also enjoy a high market demand around the world.


Courses related to business and management are some of the most opted courses by Indian students to study abroad with MBA being the most sought after degree. Finance, Investment Banking, Marketing, Managerial Economics, Business Law and Ethics, etc. are amongst the fields students usually opt for in their business studies.

Robotics and AI-

With the changing global scenario and the adoption of technology such as Metaverse, courses related to Robotics and Artificial Intelligence have caught the attention of a large number of Indian students. They are readily looking for specialised courses in universities abroad to pursue a program in Robotics or Artificial Intelligence.


The covid-19 pandemic has surely made us realise the importance of an efficient healthcare system. Courses related to healthcare and pharmacy are being readily explored by Indian students as their career options. Nursing, medicine, healthcare management, pharmaceutical, etc. are some of the courses that are in demand both by the students and the market.

Climate change and environment-

Because of the wide research and development opportunities available in the field of climate change and environment, the related fields have seen a rise in the number of students wanting to study them. Fields such as sustainability, sustainable development, environment conservation, earth sciences, etc. have seen an influx of students.

Besides this, Indian students have also shown interest in courses related to STEM, data science and analytics. The US (31%) is the most popular study abroad destination for Indian students, followed by Canada(23%) and the UK (17%).  Australia and New Zealand witnessed a reduction in the number of international students owing to pandemic border closures and travel restrictions. Now with these restrictions lifted off, these two countries are too expected to see a rise in the number of international students.

Studying abroad is a life-altering experience and therefore it is imperative that you make well-informed decisions. We at Jamboree help thousands of students every year get into their dream college. Book a free fifteen-minute session with our counsellor to get assistance with your study abroad counselling.

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