Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Over 1,000 Students with Disabilities Studied Abroad in 2006/07

Today, my colleague Michele Scheib from Mobility International USA (MIUSA) will be a featured guest blogger. Michele is discussing the new Open Doors data on U.S. students with disabilities who studied abroad in 2006-2007. Michele’s post follows:

Over 1,000 students with disabilities from 116 U.S. post-secondary institutions studied abroad for credit in 2006/07, according to baseline figures from the Institute of International Education (IIE)’s annual Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange ( This represents 2.6% of the total number of study abroad students. Half of the students with disclosed disabilities reported a learning disability, while one quarter reported mental disabilities. Students with physical, sensory or other disabilities comprised the remaining 25 percent. Students with disabilitiestypically represent 9% of the student population on U.S. campuses, according to U.S.Department of Education, National Postsecondary Student Aid Studies.

IIE collected the disability data for the first time this year, and hopes the low response rate will improve next year. Purdue University, San Diego State University and Linfield College reported the largest numbers of disabled students. Information on how to collect disability data can be found on the Open Doors website (

The National Clearinghouse on Disability and Exchange (NCDE) is sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State and administered by Mobility International USA. The NCDE provides free information and referral services to increase the participation of people with disabilities in international exchange programs.

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