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Graduate School Enrollment

The number of students enrolled in graduate programs in the US has risen slightly, the Chronicle of Higher Education reports, adding that that increase is mainly due to an influx of international students.

A report from the Council of Graduate Schools and the Graduate Record Examinations Board says that there was a 1.8 percent increase in newly enrolled graduate students between fall 2011 and fall 2012. The report surveyed 675 institutions in the US.

The number of international students enrolling in graduate programs in the US increased 8 percent between 2011 and 2012 while the number of first-time graduate enrollment for US citizens and permanent residents remained nearly flat, at 0.6 percent

Similarly, the number of US citizens and permanent residents enrolling for the first time in science graduate programs also stay about the same.

Just over 17 percent of the US citizens and permanent residents starting graduate school enrolled in STEM fields, while nearly 55 percent of temporary residents did.

"We have strong increases for international students, which is good because if we didn't have strong enrollment from abroad, some graduate programs would be faltering," Debra Stewart, the council president, tells the Chronicle. "But there are some particular concerns about where declines continue to persist for US students. We are seeing a widening gap between US and international first-time enrollments in engineering, math, and computer science."