Vietnam - Country Commercial Guide
Education and Training
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Education and training are top priorities for the government, which needs to equip the labor force with scientific, technological, and management skills. As new industries expand, a university degree is increasingly essential for young Vietnamese workers searching for higher-paying jobs in new and emerging sectors, with a focus on the high-tech industry.

In addition, the domestic education market in Vietnam continues to strengthen due to the significant increase in per capita income, the robust expansion of both the manufacturing and services sectors, and the emphasis Vietnamese families traditionally place on ensuring a solid education for their children. As a result, domestic offerings continue to improve. Still, a large percentage of university graduates need further training to find jobs in their perspective fields, demonstrating a need for more practical and effective education. As a result of this acknowledgment, many Vietnamese families and students look for educational opportunities outside of Vietnam.

According to the Vietnamese Ministry of Education and Training (MoET) data, there were approximately 190,000 Vietnamese students studying abroad in the 2019-2020 academic year, with a vast majority of students abroad focused on post-secondary school opportunities. These numbers continue to grow as families increase their household income and look to send their children abroad to ensure they have access to the best educational opportunities. The overseas study destinations include Japan (22%), the United States (17%), Australia (17%), Canada (12%), The UK (7%), China (6%), and others (19%).

Leading Sub-Sectors

Higher Education

The latest Open Doors report of the American Institute of International Education (IIE) released on November 13, 2023, said that the number of Vietnamese students studying in the U.S. in 2022-2023 is 21,900, accounting for about 2.1% of the total number of international students studying in the U.S. and contributing $816 million USD for US economy.

Of the 21,900 Vietnamese students enrolled in higher education in the United States, 65.3% were undergraduates, 17.2% focused on the graduate study level, 15% enrolled in Optional Practical Training (OPT), and the remaining 2.6% were pursuing non-degree programs. Vietnam is ranked 5th by IIE for the second consecutive year in terms of the number of international students at higher education level in the U.S.  Among community college enrollees, Vietnamese students continue to constitute the second largest group of foreign students, accounting for approximately 7.6% of all international enrollments in 2022-2023, according to the Institute of International Education’s (IIE) annual “Open Doors” Report.


Number of Students form Vietnam 2000-2023
Number of Students form Vietnam 2000-2023

Vietnamese students in the U.S. by field of study

Table: Vietnamese students in the U.S. by field of study 
 Academic year
TOTAL STUDENTS21,63120,71321,900
Business/ Management26.9%25.6%24.7%
Math/ Computer Science*17.8%19.3%21.5%
Physical/ Life Sciences*10.4%10.7%9.6%
Health Professions*5.4%5.4%4.7%
Social Sciences4.9%5.7%5.9%
Fine/ Applied Arts4.4%4%4.1%
Intensive English1.4%0.7%1.6%


*Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) field

Note: Percent distribution may not total 100.0 due to rounding.

Secondary Education

There were 53,517 international student records for K-12 education during calendar year 2022. China sent 25.3 percent of all K-12 students in 2022, followed by South Korea, Mexico, Spain and Vietnam.

25.3% (13,565): China

8.2% (4,368): South Korea

7.6% (4,076): Mexico

6% (3,226): Spain

5.5% (2,933): Vietnam

Vietnamese students in US for K-12 education

Table: Vietnamese students in US for K-12 education
School yearNumber of Vietnamese students
2022  2,933


(Source: SEVIS of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security)

Online Programs

Vietnam’s online learning market is favorable due to (1) the enhancement of the Vietnamese government in IT application and digital transformation in education and training, (2) the development of internet infrastructure, and (3) the increase of smartphones and other mobile digital devices users. However, despite increased use of online learning, online learning programs continues to face challenges in this market.

Time zone differences can affect a student’s experience in the virtual classroom. For instance, while lectures in certain parts of U.S. happen early in the morning, it is usually late at night in Vietnam. School administration, teachers, students, and parents may hesitate to engage in online education, fearing online delivery could affect learning outcomes as the students sometimes lack self-motivation when studying independently.

Education Technology

For investors, the Asian EdTech market is one of the potential investment markets with strong growth.  The development of Distance Learning and EdTech in Southeast Asia has driven fast growth in Vietnam.

According to a recent report by Do Ventures, EdTech is the third most invested field in Vietnam in the past eight years in the technology sector. The total venture capital investment in Vietnam for EdTech is USD103 million, just behind the payment field (USD462 million) and retail (USD416 million). However, the area of EdTech and the digital transformation of education in Vietnam is still at its early stages.

In 2019, Vietnam was in the top 10 fastest-growing online education markets globally, with an annual growth rate of 44.3%. Projections indicate that the market is set to reach a value of US$3 billion by year end 2023. In 2022, Vietnam saw the establishment of more than 100 Edtech startups. According to Tracxn Technologies, there are more than 300 EdTech businesses in Vietnam, most of which are startups and B2C businesses.

Vietnam has favorable conditions for the development of EdTech, such as a young population, a fast-growing economy, strong government support, increasing educational expenses, good internet coverage, and a high percentage of smartphone users.


The United States is Vietnamese students’ and parents’ first choice when planning to study abroad. Vietnamese students are interested in learning about majors, the school/campus environment, scholarships, academic requirements, and internship and job opportunities when evaluating schools. Meanwhile, parents are interested in a school location, campus safety, total cost (including school cost and living cost), connections with universities and colleges, and the focus on employment skills. However, there are regional differences between the North and South of Vietnam. In the southern regions, location and financial aid/scholarship packages are key drivers for families. In contrast, in the north of Vietnam, families pay more attention to the ranking of the schools and key performance statistics such as test scores and the number of graduates that move on to 2 and 4-year colleges and universities.

Four-year University/Graduate Degree

Many Vietnamese students are interested in four-year undergraduate programs at U.S. universities, though many also extend their studies in the U.S. at the graduate level. Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) remain the top selected fields of study by Vietnamese students, followed by Business & Management and Physical/Life Science.

High Schools/Boarding Schools

There is growing interest among Vietnamese families in sending their children to the U.S. to enroll in high school/boarding schools. This is due to the belief of families that their children will better adapt to life at a U.S. university or college if they also attended 2-3 years of high school in the U.S. This will allow them to better adapt culturally, academically, and socially, ensuring a better chance of success as they pursue a higher education degree.

It is important to note that Vietnamese parents cite their desire for providing a safe and comfortable environment for their kids as a primary criterion for selecting boarding schools. Other factors that go into the family’s decision-making are financial aid/scholarship packages and the relationships a school has with community colleges and universities, allowing their student to transition to a U.S. institution smoothly and seamlessly.

Joint-Degree Programs

Partnering with local institutions for 2+2, 3+1, or 3+1+X joint-degree programs.

The Vietnamese government’s top three priorities include improving infrastructure, institutional reform, and human resources development. As part of this, improving domestic education is a top priority in various plans. The initiatives include ambitious goals, such as a ten percent annual increase in domestic university enrollment and developing a higher education system that is more in line with global standards. Because of this, the Vietnamese government has increased budget allocations, liberalized private sector involvement, and encouraged foreign participation in developing education and training services.

As the Vietnamese government gives greater autonomy for institutions to manage all aspects of their schools, institutions in Vietnam are increasingly interested in expanding partnership opportunities with foreign institutions, especially American institutions.

Marketing Strategies

The most popular social media sites for Vietnamese students are Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and Tik Tok. Vietnamese parents are highly engaged on Facebook. These users aged 18 – 35, account for 75% of the Facebook users in the country. It is also a popular platform for streaming videos. 

Regarding search engines, Google takes the top position among Vietnamese users. Standing second is a local alternative: Coc Coc. These search engines will lead users to educational opportunities, such as the official institutions’ websites. Thus, investing in and updating your website is an effective way to promote the institutions.

LinkedIn is the most popular platform that students use to search for job opportunities. Users receive job advertisements and get alerts on free training programs. 

Although the above popular social media and search engines help you reach a large Vietnamese population, focusing on target customers will be more effective. Schools should consider partnering with local education agents to promote the schools on their websites as Vietnamese students and parents use those sites to seek information about studying overseas.


Information about studying in the United States is available through Education USA, a global network of more than 400 advisory centers supported by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State. The U.S. Mission has Educational Advisors in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City that organize annual education fairs and other events to promote U.S. schools to Vietnamese students and parents.

For more information about the Vietnamese Education sector, please contact:

Ms. Huong Nguyen, Commercial Assistant

U.S. Commercial Service – Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam


Phone Number: +84-28-3520-4680


Ms. Ngan Thai, Commercial Assistant

U.S. Commercial Service - Hanoi, Vietnam


  • Phone Number: +84-24-3580-5199