Applying for Admission to a U.S. Program

Each college and university in the United States sets its own admission criteria and determines which applicants are eligible. You must apply to each college or university separately.

You should still apply to schools even if you have chosen one school. It is possible that your first choice school will not accept you. You should consider at least two schools from which you are certain that you will be accepted. You are competing against international students from around the globe for a limited number space.

Many schools in the USA encourage international students to contact their admissions offices at least one year prior to registering to attend that school.

These steps will help you to apply for admission at U.S. colleges and universities.


Once you have made your selections, contact the school to request an application form. This magazine contains school advertisements.StudyUSA.comAs information resources to assist you in making your decision. You can reach schools directly through the website to request information.

You should check the admission requirements of the university’s graduate school before applying for a postgraduate program. Graduate programs often have higher admission standards. Some programs require you to send your application directly the department. You can contact the chairperson or admissions office at the graduate school.

Please mention where you found out about the school.Study in the USA (r).


U.S. colleges and universities base their admissions decisions on a student’s academic record and relevant test scores such as the TOEFL, SAT, or ACT. Additional exam scores such as the GRE and GMAT will be required if you apply to graduate schools.

You will receive information from the admissions office of your graduate school and an application form. You might be able obtain the application form for a particular school online or at your local educational counseling center.

Each application requires a fee of US$35-US$100. The application fee covers the processing of your application. It is non-refundable even if you don’t get admitted. To confirm receipt of your application, contact the admissions office if you send it by mail.

Your marks from the past four years of secondary school will be reviewed by the admissions office. The admissions office will also review your results from the national secondary school exams in your country. Your marks from college or university will also be considered if you apply for a graduate program.

Ask your school to send a certified copy of the transcript or academic record you have completed to the schools you are applying to. Before you take your admissions test, it is important to arrange for official score reports be sent to colleges and universities that are of interest to you.

Send your application well in advance to all colleges and universities. This allows you to take extra time to address any delays.


Certain examinations are required for students applying to colleges and universities in the USA (SAT, ACT or GMAT). These tests measure achievement and aptitude. A test to measure English proficiency must be taken by international students. These tests can be taken at any test center around the globe. These tests are “standardized,” meaning that they can be taken at any test center. Your scores provide an international standard to measure your ability relative to other students.


The schools you are applying to receive your test scores directly. When you register for certain tests such as the SAT and ACT, you will be asked for the names of the schools. For computer-based exams, you will need to designate the schools on the exam site. The testing agencies will then mail your scores directly. Scores that you request later will incur a fee.


You will start receiving letters from the schools you have chosen after the deadline for applications. Some universities notify applicants of their acceptance as soon as their documents reach the admissions office. This is known “rolling admissions”. Other schools wait several months before contacting all applicants at once.


To reserve a place in an entering class, most universities require that students pay a deposit. International students may need to pay a deposit that is as large as the cost of a semester or full year of tuition.

If you’re applying for financial aid, or you intend to live in university housing, you should immediately send your deposit. You will have a greater chance of being accepted into campus housing because many schools don’t have enough housing.

A statement detailing how much money you have during your time at school may be required. You will need details about your award if you are a recipient of a scholarship, or if your government or company sponsors you.


It is possible that you are unfamiliar with the American custom of writing a personal essay for submission with your university application. These are some great tips for writing an amazing essay.

Step 1Consider a topic that is interesting. The topic of your essay should be personal to you. Your essay topic should reflect your personality, values, or interests and show how you differ from other applicants. You should write something that is not reflected in your grades, your list of classes, or any other part of the application. You can ask yourself several questions that will help you brainstorm ideas. (1) What is your personality? (2) What are your past experiences? (2) What have you done? (3) What are your goals for the future?

Step 2 Write your essay. Writing is a process that takes time. Do not rush and expect to complete your essay in a single afternoon. The introduction is a key component of your essay. The introduction should draw the reader in so that they are interested in what the rest of the essay has to offer. You don’t need to use complicated vocabulary words to communicate your ideas. You should use the language to express your feelings, not to prove that you know anything. Use examples to illustrate your points when you make statements.

Step 3Ask for help and take your time. Give yourself enough time to stop working on your essay for several days, or even a week, and then return to it. This will give you a fresh perspective and allow you to read it with a new perspective. You can also ask your family and friends to read it. They will be able see details you missed or forgot to mention. Take your time, have fun, and be authentic.


The following information will be required by most applications:

  • Personal information includes your name, age, and address.
  • ActivitiesMake a list of all club memberships, awards received team sports experience or leadership positions you have held.
  • Education plan writes a brief essay about why you are interested in attending this school, the course of study that you would like to take, your career goals and research plans.
  • EssaySome schools may require you to write a personal essay about a topic that interests you. Sidebar
  • Recommendations lettersYou will find several pages to write letters of recommendation on the application form. Ask your teachers to write these letters and send them to the admissions offices of each school.

Test-Taking Tips

Students should remember that good English language instruction is essential for preparing for any of these tests. Before you start university studies, consider enrolling in an intensive English program. This will make it easier to learn English. You can improve your English language proficiency by continuing to study and practicing.

  1. Make sure to take plenty of time for preparations before each test. To familiarize yourself more fully with the structure and guidelines of the test, you can use any available preparation materials. Each exam has instructions for making both papers- and computer-based tests.
  2. You can use the available questions and exercises. You can often find examples of questions that are authentic and topics that have been used before, as well as sample tests. Before taking the actual exam, practice as much as possible.
  3. Simulate the test scenario not hesitate to ask questions. Learn as much about the environment as possible and practice it. Only allow yourself the time you have for the actual test. You can practice working through sections quickly and efficiently, focusing on the areas that need improvement.
  4. Make the most of every resource you have. You can work more efficiently if you are more familiar with the scoring system and what a test is about. You can find a lot of information online, which is a great resource. Use the information and resources that are available to you to help you succeed.
  5. Follow the directions. Before you begin any test, make sure to read all instructions carefully. It is important to understand the objectives and how you will achieve them. Do not worry if you don’t know the answer. Focus on the question at hand and try your best, but don’t waste too much time on one thing. You should pace yourself to ensure you have enough time for each question.
  6. Relax and be confidentGet plenty of rest before any exam. Before any exam, get plenty of sleep. You will feel more relaxed and positive during an exam if you are well rested.


Most schools require the same application materials from international students: the application, fee and official transcripts. A bank statement is also required. Many schools require essays from applicants. It is important that they are personal and not about their achievements or elaborate CVs. Get your essay edited by an English native speaker.

Mary Meulblok is the Manager, International Student Services at Pierce College in Washington State


You are in for an amazing life experience. You’ll learn so much more than what you imagine. It is possible to do anything, so don’t be afraid to try it.

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