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More than five hundred sixty thousand foreign students/ attended an American college or university/ during the last school year. It was the seventh straight year/ with more than half a million international students/ in the United States.

Last year's group/ was about the same size/ as the year before -- which was good news/ for schools. Why? Because the number of students/ coming to the United States/ had been falling/ for two years.

Today, in our Foreign Student Series, we present numbers/ from the latest "Open Doors" report. The information/ is from the Institute of International Education, based in New York.

India/ again sent the most students/ in the school year/ that began/ in autumn/ of two thousand five. India/ passed China/ in two thousand one/ as the leading sender/ of foreign students/ to the United States.

American schools/ last year/ had more than seventy-six thousand Indian students. That was a five percent drop/ from the year before -- the first reduction/ since nineteen ninety-six.

China/ had more than sixty-two thousand students/ in American schools, roughly the same/ as the year before.

South Korea/ was third/ with an increase of ten percent. And Japan/ was fourth -- but with an eight percent drop.

The report says/ there were also sharp decreases/ in students/ from Turkey, Colombia, Pakistan and Malaysia. But there were notable increases/ in students/ from Nepal and Vietnam.

For the fifth year, the school/ with the most foreign students/ was the University of Southern California/ in Los Angeles. It had almost seven thousand.

Columbia University/ in New York/ was second. Others/ with large numbers/ included Purdue, New York University, the University of Texas/ at Austin/ and the University of Michigan/ in Ann Arbor.

What were the most popular areas/ of study? Eighteen percent/ studied business and management. Sixteen percent/ studied engineering. Nine percent/ were in the physical and life sciences. Eight percent/ studied social sciences, and another eight percent/ studied mathematics and computer science.

There were fewer international students/ in computer science and engineering/ last year. But there were more/ in areas/ including art, health/ and intensive English language.

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