ISJ Internation Schools Journal Envisioning the K-Graduate Education Paradigm
ACS Athens

ISJ Spring 2021: Exploring the Clustering of Elite Traditional International School Graduates at Global Universities / Tristan Bunnell, Michael Donnell, Hugh Lauder


This paper further explores a new phenomenon involving the graduates of ‘Elite Traditional International Schools (ETISs) and builds upon a recent journal publication by the authors (Bunnell, Donnelly, and Lauder, 2020) on the topic. That paper used data in the public domain showing the university entry (i.e. matriculation) of young people from seven ETISs, over several successive years, and revealed that graduates are entering a huge array of institutions globally yet at the same time are beginning to cluster within a few major destinations within North America, and England.

The main stimulus behind that study had been the rather startling assertion that 70% of undergraduates at the University of British Columbia (UBC) emerge from ETISs (Keeling, 2015), effectively making that institution a ‘global university’, and making Vancouver defacto a ‘global city’. A second stimulus had been the finding from ISC Research’s Pathways from K-12 English-medium International Schools to University 2018, which provided data on the destinations of graduates from 132 schools and had reported that UBC was the major matriculation destination. In fact, that report showed a ‘Top 5’ that also included Canada’s University of Toronto, alongside New York University (NYU), plus King’s College London (KCL) and University College London (UCL).