More than half of Chinese students who went to US colleges in 2016 did so with a bachelor’s degree or higher, according to a new report from the US National Center for Education Statistics.
The findings suggest a lack of understanding about the US college-academic environment.
“There are a lot of misconceptions about what happens at a US college,” said Dr Yuxuan Chen, an associate professor of education at Stanford University who led the study.
A recent report by the US Education Department found that only 19 per cent of students who enrolled in US college between 2012 and 2017 had a bachelor degree.
Chinese students who received bachelor’s degrees in the US were paid an average of US$2,000 (£1,550) a year.
In comparison, a Chinese university graduate earns $12,500 a year in the United States.
While China’s college-educated workforce has grown significantly over the past decade, the country’s universities still struggle to keep up with demand.
For instance, there were only 3,000 fewer Chinese undergraduates studying at US universities in 2020 than in 2007.
However, the US is no longer a top destination for Chinese students, according the report.
According to the report, only about 9 per cent, or about 50,000 students, are expected to attend Chinese universities in 2019.
China has also seen a sharp drop in Chinese students studying in the country.
Between 2012 and 2020, the number of Chinese university graduates fell by about 4 per cent.
US universities have been facing increasing pressure to cut costs as they struggle to attract the best and brightest students from China.
At the same time, China’s leaders are trying to develop its own economy.
They are pushing to increase investment, improve access to education and reduce bureaucratic barriers.
There is also increasing pressure on China to ensure that students from abroad are not disadvantaged, particularly when they compete with the US, said Dr Chen.
He said Chinese students are also facing a more competitive marketplace, where many schools are offering cheaper fees than they would in the USA.
This means that Chinese students will likely face more competition in the future, and the US education system will need to do more to attract Chinese students.
Dr Chen said it was likely that the US would need to increase its tuition levels, which are already at a record high.
If that were to happen, he said, it could lead to more Chinese students leaving the US.
Some of the problems include a lack a good job market, and high levels of inequality.
It is also hard to know where Chinese students end up going when they finish their degree, said Professor Chen.