UW-Madison students continue to have a love of studying abroad, according to the latest ranking of students traveling far and wide to expand their learning horizons.

The 2012 Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange puts UW-Madison ninth in terms of the number of students studying outside the U.S. for academic credit, with 2,159 students at foreign universities in the 2010-11 school year.

A  year earlier, UW-Madison ranked 10th.

"This is testament that UW faculty, administration and students understand the importance and value of a global education and that international experience is a key component to student development, regardless of one's major or career path," said Dan Gold, director of International Academic Programs on the UW campus, in a news release Monday from the UW-Madison news service.

The top destinations for UW-Madison students were Spain, the United Kingdom, China, Italy and France, the same five countries at the top of the list for the overall 273,996 American students studying abroad.

UW-Madison students ranked higher in long-term and medium-term duration for studying stints abroad, sixth among peer institutions for long-term (academic or calendar year) and fourth for mid-length (semester) durations.

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About half (1,068) of the students studying abroad were seniors, and two-thirds (1,411) were female.

On the flip side of global learning, UW-Madison hosted 4,840 international students in 2011-12, up from 4,647 the previous year and 26th among peer institutions, down from 23rd the year before.

The most foreign students come from (in order) China, South Korea, India, Malaysia and Taiwan.

Nationally, China is the leading country sending students to the U.S., followed by India, South Korea, Saudi Arabia and Canada.