Research Topics

Browse research reports and other research-based documents from the WES Research team and WES Global Talent Bridge.

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Authentic Credentials
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Student Mobility Trends
Transnational Education
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Who Is Succeeding in the Canadian Labour Market? Predictors of Career Success for Skilled Immigrants

This report examines the demographic characteristics of skilled immigrants as well as their experience and education, and how these factors affect their labour market outcomes. It is intended to inform Canadian policy and practice with respect to skilled immigrants, and to increase awareness among prospective immigrants of the factors that are associated with labour force success.

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Are U.S. HEIs Meeting the Needs of International Students?

To provide insight into international student experiences in the U.S., WES Research conducted a survey of 1,921 current students and recent graduates and consulted with 24 current students through an online focus group. The resulting report, based on data collected in 2019, provides an overview of student perceptions regarding various aspects of the student experience, including on-campus relationships, identity acculturation, and daily life. The report also includes recommendations for how institutions can better serve international students.

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Beyond Academic Credentials—Toward Competency-Informed Hiring

This paper focuses on the potential of competency assessment to support the long-term growth of the labour market by facilitating the appropriate employment of skilled immigrants. A competency-informed approach involves looking holistically at an individual’s ability to apply knowledge and skills with appropriate judgment in a defined setting.

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Perspectives on Innovative and Inclusive Internationalization

It is our great pleasure to present the proceedings of the 2019 WES-CIHE Summer Institute on Innovative and Inclusive Internationalization, a joint initiative of World Education Services (WES) and the Center for International Higher Education (CIHE) at Boston College.

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Innovative and Inclusive Internationalization

In collaboration with the Boston College Center for International Higher Education (CIHE), WES presents a series of studies on aspects of internationalization in higher education. The articles are based on research in transnational education, internationalization trends, institutional experiences, and more presented at the 2018 WES-CIHE Summer Institute.

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Can Immigrant Professionals Help Reduce Teacher Shortages in the U.S.?

This report explores the role that immigrant and refugee professionals can play in addressing these urgent shortages – and increasing the diversity of the teacher workforce – through alternative teacher certification programs that tap into these newcomers’ training, skills, and professional experience. The report looks at developing initiatives in several states and cities as well as relevant federal policies. It also offers wide-ranging recommendations for promising program and policy models, and how local, state, and national education stakeholders can work together to leverage the unique assets that immigrant professionals bring to addressing the needs of schools and students across the U.S.

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Navigating A New Paradigm For International Student Recruitment

On campuses across the nation, recent changes to U.S. immigration policies have led to declining interest and enrollments among international students. To learn more about the impact and how institutions are responding, WES surveyed 139 international enrollment management professionals in early 2018.

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A Way Forward for Refugees: Findings from the WES Pilot Project

When WES launched a pilot project in 2016 to assess the credentials of Syrian refugees to Canada, millions of people had already fled conflicts in nations around the world. They had streamed across borders throughout Europe and the Middle East, creating an unprecedented wave of displaced people in distress. Between November 2015 and February 2016, the Government of Canada settled more than 26,000 Syrians from Lebanon, Jordan, and Turkey. By June 2017, almost 47,000 had arrived in Canada – to a sustained outpouring of public support. This report describes how World Education Services has begun to help those with post-secondary qualifications take their next steps toward integration.

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Career Prospects and Outcomes of U.S. Educated International Students: Improving Services, Bolstering Success

This report examines the career expectations and outcomes of international students and alumni educated at U.S. higher education institutions, including the experiences of alumni who stayed in the U.S. and those who returned home.

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Best Practices: Strategies and Processes to Obtain Authentic International Educational Credentials

The Best Documentation Practices Guide is the result of teamwork and a consultative process in which representatives of Ontario regulatory bodies and World Education Services worked together to create guidelines on how to obtain authentic academic documents and develop alternatives to unavailable documentation.

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How to Obtain Authentic International Academic Credentials in Canada

Among the hundreds of thousands of well-qualified applicants each year there is a small minority who will attempt to gain admission with fraudulent documents. Instead of trying to detect false documents after they have been submitted, credential evaluators need to prevent them from being submitted in the first place by adopting and enforcing rigorous standards for receiving academic credentials.

WES developed this whitepaper to help institutions select qualified candidates, minimize fraud, and protect the integrity of their admission process.

This guide includes tips on:

  • How to recognize international education credentials
  • How to ascertain the status of awarding institutions and programs of study
  • How best to communicate with issuing institutions
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How to Obtain International Academic Credentials in the United States

Among the hundreds of thousands of well-qualified applicants each year there is a small minority who will attempt to gain admission with fraudulent documents. Instead of trying to detect false documents after they have been submitted, credential evaluators need to prevent them from being submitted in the first place by adopting and enforcing rigorous standards for receiving academic credentials.

WES developed this whitepaper to help institutions select qualified candidates, minimize fraud, and protect the integrity of their admission process.

This guide includes tips on:

  • How to recognize international education credentials
  • How to ascertain the status of awarding institutions and programs of study
  • How best to communicate with issuing institutions
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Improving the International Student Experience: Implications for Recruitment and Support

To shed light on how institutions can meet the needs among students across the globe, WES has conducted a study of over 4,600 international students. The report, Improving the International Student Experience: Implications for Recruitment and Support, includes findings from this study.

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Untapped Talent: The Economic Costs of Brain Waste Among Highly Skilled Immigrants in the United States

The United States has long attracted some of the world’s best and brightest, drawn by the strong U.S. economy, renowned universities, and reputation for entrepreneurship and innovation. But because of language, credential-recognition, and other barriers many of these highly skilled, college-educated immigrants cannot fully contribute their academic and professional training and skills once in the U.S. As a result they work in low-skilled jobs or cannot find a job — a phenomenon known as brain waste.

World Education Services (WES), New American Economy (NAE), and Migration Policy Institute (MPI) present the key findings from the first-ever U.S. estimates of the economic costs of this skill under-utilization for immigrants, their families, and the U.S. economy.

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Recognizing Refugee Qualifications: Practical Tips for Credential Assessment

This report is an overview of WES’ extensive research on worldwide practices in the assessment of credentials and qualifications of refugees and other displaced individuals. It seeks to provide educational institutions, licensing bodies, and employers – particularly in North America – with an understanding of promising and actionable practices for recognizing the qualifications, credentials and abilities of students and trained professionals.

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Syria Educational Profile: A Guide to Grade Equivalencies Between the U.S. and Syria

In communities across the world, many Syrian families have arrived over the past few months, and will continue to arrive in the year ahead. Families need to ensure that their children are enrolled in schools, and schools will want to place them at the appropriate level. WES is pleased to announce the publication of a new resource in order to facilitate the integration of these students.

This report will assist you in understanding how the education system in Syria is structured, what is included in the program of study at the elementary and secondary levels, and how the Syrian grading system compares with the North American grading system.

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Syria Educational Profile: A Guide to Grade Equivalencies Between Canada and Syria

Syrian families have arrived in communities across Canada, and will continue to arrive in the coming years. Families will need to enroll their children in Canadian schools, and schools will want to place them at the appropriate level.

This educational country profile intends to assist practitioners in education understand the structure of the educational system in Syria. It identifies the programs of study at the elementary and secondary levels, and how the grading system compares with Ontario.

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How Master’s Students Choose Institutions: Research on International Student Segmentation

Examines the characteristics and attributes different segments of international master’s students value when applying to U.S. colleges and universities. The report provides recommendations for how institution can build their value proposition and attract best-fit international students.

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Steps to Success: Integrating Immigrant Professionals in the United States

How can communities unlock the full potential of immigrant professionals within their workforce? Which factors have influenced the economic success of foreign-educated immigrants in the U.S.? This report details the results of a groundbreaking study on the experiences of immigrant professionals, and offers recommendations for more fully utilizing their talents and training.

WES Global Talent Bridge and IMPRINT created this report from a survey of immigrant professionals in six U.S. cities, identifying the factors that correlate with their successful integration into our communities.

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Career Services for International Students: Fulfilling High Expectations

Research consistently shows that among their many concerns, international students focus heavily on career prospects both when deciding to study in the U.S. and when evaluating their overall experience at their U.S. institution. The career services office is among the most important student services office on campus to many international students. Career services thus plays an integral part of the international student experience and in institutions’ further recruitment efforts.

This report is the result of an exploratory mixed methods study of career services offerings for international students at colleges and universities across the United States and their effectiveness as judged by professionals in the field.

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Considering Canada: A Look at the Views of Prospective Skilled Immigrants

Canada’s immigration system is changing so rapidly that public data and evaluation research on recent immigrants to the country are sparse. Timely information on the demographics, motivations, expectations, and needs of immigrants – both before and after they arrive in Canada – can support a more coordinated settlement sector and lead to more successful immigrant outcomes.

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Bridging the Digital Divide: Segmenting and Recruiting International Millennial Students

Analyzes nearly five thousand 17-to-36-year-old international Millennials’ use of technology and the psychographic characteristics that influence their information-seeking behavior.

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Student Segmentation for an Effective International Enrollment Strategy

Examines how different international student segments inform enrollment strategies. The report is based on a survey of nearly 3,000 U.S.-bound international students and highlights how students’ information-seeking behavior varies by education level and country.

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International Student Mobility Trends 2013

Analyzes international student mobility trends with a comparative analysis of undergraduate level growth patterns with an actionable framework to recruit international students by leveraging an interplay of technology, partnership, and research.