Simplifying US Grad School Application for International Students

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International enrollment for US graduate programs is on the rise. More and more students are coming to the United States for graduate degrees, which is good news for US grad programs, many of which are staying afloat from international enrollment. While there are many benefits to earning your graduate degree in the US the application process is arduous for even US citizens. You will have to prove equivalency, prove that you have a grasp of the English language, and establish legal residency in the United States for your time here.

You can simplify your application process from the beginning by ruling out academic institutions that will not accept your credentials. Graduate programs in the United States require US Bachelor’s degrees or their equivalent. It can be difficult to determine equivalence of degrees earned outside of the US since there are no global guidelines that apply to all institutions. Each school determines its own policy about which degrees they accept.

If you have a three-year bachelor’s degree from abroad, many schools will not accept that it is equivalent to a four-year degree because they only look at the number of years of study. You will have to take extra undergraduate classes that will cost you time and money to bridge this gap. This can work in your favor because it will help you narrow down your graduate program search so you won’t waste time applying for programs that will not accept your credentials. Before applying, be sure to contact the admissions office directly either by phone or via email and be clear as to what their requirements are.

The good new is more and more graduate programs are beginning to accept 3-year bachelor’s degrees from abroad as equivalent to US 4-year degrees with proper equivalence evaluation. Evaluation of overseas degrees is based on the characteristics of your national education system, the type of institution you attended and how it is recognized and accredited, as well as the field of study and level of studies you completed. However, three-year degrees require a more detailed evaluation that takes into account the number of contact hours to prove equivalency to a four-year degree.

Most schools require an evaluation be submitted with your transcript. This helps admissions officers assess your undergraduate coursework by US standards.

CCI evaluates equivalence by converting classroom contact hours from into US credit hours. This allows admissions officers to see the academic content of your degree rather than the number of years it took to complete it. For a free consultation, contact Executive Director Sheila Danzig at 1-800-771-4723.

This article was written by Rebecca Little