Destinations - Study In USA
The United States of America is located on the continent of North America. In addition to the 50 states, the U.S. has several territories and possessions, located in the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean.
The US has more than 3000 colleges and university institutions where nearly 6 million International students study in different courses for various programs.
Because the US is a leader in technology, it attracts best of the talent and brains from all over the world. It gives the students who study here, an edge over others. That's why people with a hunger to learn, enjoy the US as a study destination. Names such as Harvard, Stanford, Princeton, MIT, Toronto and McGill which have become global education brands command great deal of academic respect of the world.
There are no cultural boundaries in the US, so it also gives an opportunity to the students to learn about different cultures of the world, as they find communities from different sections of the society within the campus.
Hence a US degree is beneficial in several aspects and preferred over others.
Why USA ?
Ever since the 1950s, the US has been the leading destination for international students, and it continues to host an increasing number of students and scholars from around the world.
The reason for increase in USA’s world share as a host of international students over the past few decade is due to multiple factors like,
The quality of education in the schools, the universities and the institutions in USA is simply excellent and the level of education in US schools/colleges are quite high .With the vast resources, world-class facilities and a number of highly qualified faculties, US a hot destination for education.
Courses are offered in almost all fields of higher education. Amongst the top ranking colleges world-wide, majority of them are in USA e.g. 42 institutions from this country have found its place in the Top 100 Universities of the World.
USA is also known as “land of opportunities”. Apart from the quality education, there are vast opportunities to super-specialize in a certain field, which make it an attractive destination for students from all over the world.
The universities/colleges and institutions in the US have collaborations with employers and researchers in different fields which gives the students opportunity to gain real work experience.
This practical aspect of US education proves very useful for students, and gives insights into spheres of their own field. Learning in an American school means not only confined to classes and attending lectures or doing experiments in the laboratories but also having real time industry experience. This gives an edge over others.
Students have an opportunity to gain valuable experience through teaching and/or research while pursuing their education in the U.S., especially for students pursuing their masters. Many graduate programs offer training and teaching opportunities that enable students to become teaching assistants to undergraduates and/or research assistants on special projects exploring different aspects of your field of study.
The education system in the US is very flexible. The course is divided into credits and the classes are offered under the semester scheme. Depending on one's capacity and convenience a student can choose the number of credits/electives/optional classes he / she want to earn in a semester or quarter.
Education system in USA
The primary and secondary education in US comprises 12 grades of study over 12 calendar years of before graduating and becoming eligible for college admission. Hence, education beyond class XII is also known as 'post-secondary' education, in USA.
Post secondary education is broadly divided into following categories-
A Community College (also known as city or county college) offers Associate Degrees of two years duration. It is the lowest in hierarchy of post secondary academic degrees offered in USA. Consequent upon completion of such two-year Associate degrees, students may join either upper-division colleges or universities to complete the balance two years for obtaining the Bachelors degree.
Most community colleges are publicly owned ones and offer technical programs in the area of accounting, business, photography, interior design etc. that prepare students for entry into job market, with Certificate and Diploma programs.
Undergraduate degree programs offered by different types of colleges are of four years duration. It is offered in private, public colleges as well as many universities. The curriculum consists of four general areas of study- major, general courses, cognates and electives. Students, who have completed a part of their undergraduate degree and want to go to the USA, can apply as a transfer Student.
There are two types of bachelor's degree: B.A or B.S. Some universities in the USA offer either of the degrees in all fields and at times both the degrees in some field. Students need to appear for SAT & TOEFL/IELTS exams for admission.
In general, a Master's program can be finished successfully in 1 or 2 years full-time. Graduate education can be pursued after successfully completing a Bachelor's and/or Master's degree. Students with Bachelors in engineering are qualified whereas the students with B.Com, B.Sc, and B.A need to complete at least one year of Masters( post graduate diploma is also accepted by some specific institutions for specific programs). Students need to take GMAT for management related subjects / GRE for arts, science or any other subjects and TOEFL/ IELTS exams for admission.
Duration of Doctorate degree (Commonly known as PhD)me may range from 3 years to 5 years.. PhD students need to submit a research proposal as well have to appear for GRE/GMAT & TOEFL/IELTS exams for admissions.
Types of Institution
State-affiliated institutions, generally large in size are financially supported by public taxes. All levels of degrees with different fields of study are offered. Public colleges and universities are relatively easy on the pocket for residents of a state where the schools are located. Foreign students pay "out-of-state" tuition, which is higher.
Some of the notable public universities across US are: University of California, Pennsylvania State University, Kansas State University, University of Texas, California State University, Ohio State University.
Private Institutions run without the control of the Government entity. Fees in these institutions are quite higher as compared to the Public Universities, but the international as well the domestic students pay the same amount of fees.
Examples of notable private institutions are Carnegie Mellon University, Long Island University, New York University, and George Washington University.
Institutes emphasizing principally on science and engineering are known for their research and graduate programs. Undergraduates admitted to these schools usually have very strong backgrounds in math and sciences. Standardized test scores (e.g. SAT or GRE) required for these universities are quite high.
Some of the notable institutes are M.I.T. (the Massachusetts Institute of Technology), NYIT (New York Institute of Technology), Cal Poly (California Polytechnic Institute), and Georgia Tech (Georgia Institute of Technology).
The Ivy League schools are the oldest and most prestigious in the country. Few of the notable institutes are: Harvard, Yale, Cornell, Columbia, Princeton, Brown, Dartmouth, , and the University of Pennsylvania. Ivy League colleges have undergraduate liberal arts education program and also some of noted graduate and professional schools, too.
Admissions in Ivy League colleges are highly competitive and the tuitions fees at these private schools are among the highest in the country.
Generally have the focus on undergraduate study of the traditional arts and science disciplines: humanities, sciences, and social sciences. Strictly liberal arts colleges are often quite old and mostly private schools. They are highly-rated institutions as they stress on small classes, individual attention to the students, and closer relationships between the faculties and students.
Many of them also generally have rigid admission standards. Among these schools are: Amherst, Marist, Swarthmore, Manhattan, Smith, Mount Holyoke.
More over known as County Colleges or City colleges. Community colleges provide higher education and lower level tertiary education, granting certificates, diplomas and Associates Degree. Some notable community colleges are Ohlone College, De Anza College & Bellevue Community College.
Major intake is in the Fall, but most of the universities invite applications for Spring intake and few of them for summer & winter intake too. However all subjects commence in Fall and only some in Winter and Summer intake.
Most colleges welcome international students without any prejudice. Students looking for a graduate course must begin application procedure in the last year of school. It may take 18 months to prepare for admission in USA. Firstly, it is required to pass the standardized entrance test (like GRE/GMAT/SAT) and the English Language test, without which one cannot apply for higher studies in USA
Next, applications are to be submitted to each shortlisted university. For sending application there are no restrictions on the number of colleges. There is an alternative system of admission which comprises of:
Applications are submitted few months early, usually between 1st to 15th of November. If selected, you must commit to joining only this university.
This program allows you to apply to an institute anytime between fall and spring.
This is similar to the Early Decision Program but if selected, here commitment to join the institute is not mandatory.
For those who have not yet completed their 3rd year bachelor's degree there is another alternative to get admitted on the transfer basis, whereby credit courses passed by a student are evaluated for equivalency and if found to be equivalent, are transferred.
A very good academic background from secondary to higher secondary level, and very good scores in TOEFL/IELTS and SAT, are requirement for admission into decent US universities at the bachelor's level. And for admission into master's level program international applicants should have good academic background and also expected to have very good scores GRE/GMAT and TOEFL/IELTS.
Exceptionally, some top tier universities may require even scores, before making an admission decision.