USA is considered to be a dream destination for most of the international students, particularly from India. World renowned Institutions, International Recognition, Boundless Study Choices, Flexibility, Exciting Campus Life, Industrial Training and Research, Global Focus are some of the important aspects that make USA ideal study destination for the international students.
Application procedure to US Universities are quite competitive when compared to other countries. All students interested in applying to US Universities will have to submit the application and all the required application materials well in advance before the application dead line. Universities will have their own criteria in the selection process.
Once the university receives all the required documents, it normally takes around 6-8 weeks for the application process. Most universities will communicate their admission decisions through email, and if it positive, then the university will send them the admission document which is called as I-20, with which the students can apply for VISA.
Admission process time for most of the US Universities will be between 6-8 weeks of time, once all the required documents are submitted. It may take up to 12 weeks for some specialized programs.
The major intake for admission in most of the US Universities is Fall, which starts in August. Universities also offer admission in Spring intake which begins in January. Very few universities do offer admission for Summer intake which begins in May-June, but this intake will have limited options in terms of university and programs.
For students planning to begin their studies in Fall (August), ideal time to start with their application process is around October-November of the previous year, as most of the top universities will have their application deadline by December.
For students planning for Spring, good time to begin the application process would be around July-August. There are many universities in US which offers admissions on a rolling basis and they don’t have a particular deadline. It is suggested that one should apply at least 5-6 month before the intake.
Students are required to submit the following documents in addition to application:
The TOEFL / GRE score requirement normally differs from university to university and program to program. For admissions into decent universities the average scores would be around 80+ in TOEFL and 300+ in GRE new pattern (1000-1100 on the old GRE pattern).
Better and top ranked universities may require higher scores. However there are many universities in USA which offers admissions even with lesser scores.
Most Universities in USA require a minimum of 16 years of education to be eligible for admission to graduate programs. However there are few universities which accept even students with 15 years of education background.
Such students are normally be accepted into MBA and other management programs, while very few universities offer even some engineering courses.
Educational costs at US universities for MS are quite reasonable. Educational costs in US Universities start from as low as $8,000 per annum to as high as $25,000 per annum. This variation depends on certain factors like choice of program, university, place and etc.
The average tuition fee for studying Bachelors in US Universities could cost around $10,000-12,000 per annum and for Masters around 12,000-15,000 per annum.
Living expenses will differ from place to place in USA. The approximate monthly living expense will be in the range of $500-$600 which includes accommodation and boarding expenses and may vary depending on the lifestyles.
Scholarships and Financial Aid are available in most of the US Universities for qualified students. Most US Universities support International students with financial assistance in any of the forms like Scholarships,Fee Waiver, Teaching Assistantship, Research Assistantship and etc.
An ideal student with good academic credentials can get up to 25% – 50% scholarships in some cases universities may waive complete fee.
All International students are allowed to do part time jobs up to for 20 hrs. per week during studies and full time during the holidays. Earnings through these part time works varies anywhere from $6 – $10 depending on the kind of job.
Students can initiate their F1 student VISA application process once they receive the I-20. They need to schedule an appointment with US Consulate General / Embassy to appear for the personal interview, and they are required to carry the following documents along with them for the interview:
US offer a lot of work opportunities during the study as well as Post study. All international students with a minimum of one year of education at a University are eligible to apply for CPT (Curricular Practical Training) or Internships and can work full time.
Students are allowed to apply for OPT (Optional Practical Training) after successful completion of their degree. Under OPT scheme students are allowed to work full time for 29 months for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) related fields and for one year for Management field of study. Under OPT scheme; students are required to work in their field of study.