Student Surveys  

Comprehensive and timely pan-Canadian data is vital to inform policy and program decision-making within our sector. The Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE) is committed to leveraging its unique role to build a national body of evidence that can drive innovation and sustainability for international education in Canada.

International Student Survey

The CBIE International Student Survey (ISS) is a unique, national dataset that provides critical and holistic insights on the international student experience in Canada’s post-secondary institutions, from pre-arrival planning through study and post-graduate phases.

Since the inaugural edition of the International Student Survey in 2012, the number of student respondents and the scope of knowledge and trends illuminated through the dataset have grown immensely. The survey increasingly supports the international education sector’s capacity to drive informed, innovative practices through increased understanding of the stories, motivations, and perceptions of the international students who choose to study in Canada.

The 2021 ISS offered insight from over 40,000 student respondents across Canada, including 67 universities, colleges, and polytechnics.

The next iteration of the ISS is anticipated for 2024. Stay up-to-date on information about this survey by joining our mailing list

Download the 2021 Report – The Student Voice

Outbound Mobility Student Survey

Cultivating the talent Canada needs to address its global engagement challenge calls for a multifaceted approach, including a culture shift in the perceived value of an international experience.  This large-scale study focuses on outbound student mobility and offers timely insights into key issues relevant to Canadian outbound mobility from the student perspective, including understanding the value of education abroad; surfacing awareness of the opportunities available, and identifying the barriers to participation.

In 2016, CBIE undertook its Education Abroad Student Survey, engaging 35 of its member institutions (30 universities and 5 colleges/polytechnics) from across all ten provinces. Over 7,000 students responded to the survey.

The next iteration of the Outbound Mobility Survey will be launched in 2023. More information will be available in the fall of 2022. Stay up-to-date on information about this survey by joining our mailing list

Download the 2016 Report – A World of Learning

At a Glance

  • Uniquely Canadian, comprehensive, national, and bilingual in scope.
  • Participating institutions will receive the anonymized data and an institutional report.
  • The cost of participation in the surveys is included in the annual CBIE membership fee.
  • Institutions that are non-members of CBIE are also welcome to participate in the survey. CBIE will contact non-members directly to discuss participation and the associated fees. Learn more about how to become a CBIE member.


  • Your institution has a key role to play in contributing to the building of a robust national dataset through the collection of longitudinal data.
  • The longitudinal data collected from this survey will inform policy and decision-making at provincial/territorial and federal levels.
  • The survey provides Canadian institutions with insight into the perceptions, motivations, plans, and experiences of their students.
  • The data collected informs a tool for Canadian institutions to measure the progress of their strategic and operational objectives compared to a national standard.
  • Given the broad-based nature of participating member institutions representative of the Canadian post-secondary landscape, the survey yields reliable and valid data across the sector.