Introduction Globally, India makes up the second largest outward flow of international students after China. Part of the global trend, according to Global Education Digest (GED) 2009, is that men and women are equally represented in this overall global movement. While the 50:50 ratio proposed in GED is broadly representative of the stock of international students from most Western countries, the Indian case shows a very different story. An examination of select sending countries reveals that the gender ratio of International Student Migration (ISM) flows has a strong relation to the rate of female participation in tertiary education (UIS 2010). For example, for China, the rate of female participation in tertiary education is 46 per cent and women compose approximately 55 per cent of the internationally mobile student flow from China (UIS 2010). In India, the second country after China to send most students, there is a strong male bias in the tertiary enrolment ratio and mobility flows: women comprise 39 per cent of the total enrolment of the tertiary institutions in India and 27 per cent1 of the international student mobility flow. And yet, there is little to no research that examines student mobility through a gender optic.