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Abstract

This research synthesis examines key themes and findings on international students and education migrants in Canada. Our review focuses on research related to the first wave of international student mobility (ISM), and we define the literature broadly to include studies on international students, foreign students, visa students, study abroad students, sojourning students, unaccompanied minors for educational purposes, and education migrants at all educational levels and legal statuses. ISM to Canada can be divided into roughly two periods, pre‐1990 and post‐1990. Studies are drawn from across the social sciences with a focus on literature from the perspectives of sociology, geography, economics, education, psychology, and demography, to bring into focus the various structural, social, and cultural contexts that shape international student mobility. We also draw from reports published by public, private and third sector agencies. The aim of the synthesis is to highlight the main findings in this body of work, uncover gaps in research, and discuss policy implications particular to the Canadian context.


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