About the USA
The United States of America is a preferred study destination for international students, especially those who want to pursue higher education. There are the world’s top universities in the US and thus attract the best international students from across the world. A wide variety of institutions in US are offering Higher Education for International Students, namely Vocational Institutes, Community Colleges, and Universities. The United States also has both Public and Private Institutions, each with its unique advantages and thus offers a wide choice of courses and programs for International Students. The US is favourable for International Students as it has world-class faculty research facilities, and instructional resources. Also, F1 student visa allows students to explore Post-Study Work Opportunities, makes the US a very attractive study destination.
USA is a Land of Opportunities and Diversity which makes it such a Great Country. It is the second-largest Democracy in the World. Hence, the country has an enormous influence on the political dynamics of many countries around the world and the country enjoys a stable political climate. The total student enrolment of 19 million in Higher Education, International Students comprise almost 1 million, which is over 5 % of the student population. New York, California and Texas are the top states in terms of the total immigrant population as well as International Students.
Why Study In USA
The United States of America (USA) hosts the greatest number of international students in the world. Quality education, unique curriculum, multicultural environment, and abundant opportunities are just some of the reasons why many Indian students want to study in the US. Here are top 5 reasons why students opt to study in US:
1. Academic Excellence
American institutions are also known to have high academic standards, follow rigorous practices to maintain quality and are well-supported to be able to offer an excellent education to its students. As per the QS World Ranking 2019, 33 of the top 100 universities are from the US. Times Higher Education Ranking has also ranked seven of the American Universities in its top 10 list of universities.
2. Flexible Education System
American colleges and universities offer you the freedom to not only select the course content, but also the structure. You have the liberty to pursue different courses at the undergraduate level before they declare your major at the end of the second year. This helps to explore your subject interest and then decide without much hurry. This goes for graduate programs as well where you can focus on the ideas for your dissertation.
3. Excellent Support System for International Students
American Universities understand the struggles of International Students and therefore conduct regular orientation programs, workshops, and training to offer assistance. In fact, the International Student office helps students like you to get accustomed to a new kind of lifestyle.
4. Cultural Diversity
The US is a melting pot of different culture, race, and ethnicities. Its diverse environment ensures that there is acceptance among all communities and there is no room for any sort of discrimination. Growing in the midst of diversity will provide you with strong skills and personality traits that will be valuable in the international market.
5. Lively and Vibrant Campus Life
It’s a known fact that campus life of the US is matchless. Irrespective of the university you study in, you will find yourself in the midst of new cultural experiences and the American way of life.
Fun Facts about USA
1. The US flag was actually designed by a 17-year old boy, Robert G Heft.
2. Do you know that the US serves 100 acres of pizza every day?
3. The Harvard Library is the largest academic library in the world.
4. The US has the maximum number of entrepreneurs in the world.
5. 182 places in the US have ‘Christmas’ in their name.
6. While the official state animal of California is grizzly bear, there have been no grizzly bears since 1922.
7. Someone has the control to your GPS – who? The US
8. Wish to try authentic Chinese food? Go Manhattan’s Chinatown – it has the most Chinese residents in the western hemisphere.
9. The US is where you’ll find the most obese people.
10 Philadelphia was the original capital of the US.
USA Education system
Study Levels In The US
- Elementary School
- Middle School/Junior High School
- High School
- Higher Education
The tuition fee depends on the type of qualification and university or college you choose. Courses in medicine and engineering are likely to be more expensive. Like other countries, MBA programs are often the most expensive. The tuition fee spent annually can range anywhere between US$ 10,000 and US$55,000.
You can fund your studies by availing various kinds of financial aids offered by government, private organizations, or educational institutions. These can be classified into:
- Need-based aid
- Athletic Scholarships
- Scholarships / Tuition Waivers
- Fellowships / Grants
- Teaching Assistantships
- Research Assistantships
- Administrative / Residence Assistantships
Keep in mind that the competition for such aids is high and thus you must apply for them in advance.
Pedagogy in American Classrooms
USA universities place great significance on diversity, meaning classes will consist of students of different ages, religions and ethnicities. In the US most classes will have not more than 20 students and the faculty member will take the time to get to know students and their strengths. Interactive and practical learning are the basis of American teaching.
Mostly American universities and colleges commence their classes in August/September usually known as the Fall session. A few others also provide a January/February intake, called as the Spring intake that goes on till April.
English Language Requirements
For a US student visa, you’ll have to provide evidence of proficiency in the English Language. US educational institutions require a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 band; also, few Universities accept 6.0. Alternatively, you can take TOFEL test also as an option for English Language Test.
Expenditure Guide For USA
Studying abroad can be an expensive decision for students who are going to study in the USA. However, an efficient budget plan can help you manage your living expenses more effectively.
1. Tuition fee is your prime expenditure
The expenditure on tuition fee depends on the type of qualification and university or school you opt for. To cover tuition fees, you will need approx. $8,000 to $55,000 (USD) a year (indicative). You can bring down your educational expenses by applying for scholarships.
2. Calculate accommodation costs
Most universities in the US offer on-campus residence to international students. Living as a resident on-campus is a very affordable option. You can also opt for off-campus accommodation wherein you can share apartments with other students from India or live in a homestay with a local family.
3. Cost of your student visa
To study in the US, the first step is to secure a valid student visa and that comes with its own costs (approx. US$ 160 as an application fee). Feel free to consult your UNIXPERTS counsellor for latest updates and information on the visa application process and related costs.
4. Living Expenses
You need to keep a little money aside for your grocery shopping, social activities and emergencies. Considering various expenses and living costs, a single student budget in the US comes between US$ 10,000 and US$ 25,000 per academic year (indicative) depending on the city they choose to live.
5. Health support and insurance
Few US universities and colleges have initiated comprehensive health insurance plans for international students, but that is applicable as long your program is ongoing and ceases upon completion.
If your institution is not providing you with a shuttle service to-and-fro from your lodging, you’ll have to rely on the available public transport.
7. Don’t ignore your taxes
Indian students in the US are allowed to work 20 hours per week* during academic sessions and full-time during vacations. Your earned income may be taxable, if you choose to work along with your studies.
Student Visa Requirements for USA
Documents required for a US Student Visa
When you are applying for your student visa for the US, you will generally need:
- A valid passport for at least six months beyond your period of stay in the US (unless exempt by country-specific agreements)
- Acceptance at a SEVP approved school and your Form i-20
- Application fee payment for the SEVIS
- Non-immigrant visa application and the Form DS-160 confirmation page
- Your photograph in the requested format, and number
Some additional documents that might be required include:
- Academic preparation documents such as transcripts, diplomas, degrees or certificates
- Need for the Evidence that you have sufficient funds to maintain your living expenses throughout the period of your stay in the US. This may include:
- Bank statements
- Financial undertaking by a sponsor to cover your accommodation and living costs
- A scholarship program
- Evidence that you will leave the US once you have completed your course of study. This can be in the form of an air ticket out of the US to your home country
You need to appear for a personal interview at the US Embassy or Consulate.
*Please note that these are the basic requirements, speak with your UNIXPERTS counsellor for a detailed list of documents required for visa processing
Applying for Your Visa Online
You have to apply for your student visa application online using the US Embassy and Consulates India website.
How can we help with visa applications?
If you’re an UNIXPERTS student with an offer letter / i20 from any of our partner institutions in the US, we can advise you on how to go about the entire process.
What are Popular Courses in USA
Top Courses in US
|Top Courses in US||Price Range (USD)|
|Business Management||14,000-45,000 per year|
|Engineering||30,000 -58,000 per year|
|Maths and Computer Sciences||18000-47000 per year|
|Social Science||18000-47000 per year|
|Physical & life sciences||14000- 55000 per year|
Health and Other Support Services
It can be a little challenging to cope with the changes in your environment when you move to the USA for the first time. With a new set of norms and customs, adjusting into the culture takes some time, and you may need some assistance to absorb it all smoothly.
In case you get hassled at any point, you can reach out to:
|Pre arrival support guide||Many institutions offer a pre-arrival support guide that includes details of accommodation options, medical insurance available, strategies to budget living expenses and other necessary details to settle in.|
|Campus support services||Number of universities and colleges have their own student associations, which help international students manage their various activities along with academics. Few universities also have a dedicated international student association to offer unbiased support to students from another country.|
|Student associations on campus||Most universities and colleges have their own student associations, which help international students manage their various activities along with academics.|
|Support for students with disabilities||Most universities offer special support to international students with disabilities, but it is best to communicate the same at the time of application to discuss if any special arrangements need to be made for you.|
Make sure you have a Health Insurance
Most universities and colleges also provide health insurance facilities for international students. You might have to arrange for it on your own if your institution doesn’t provide one before your departure.
In an Emergency
By chance, you face any emergency, call the toll-free number 911. A number of American universities also have red boxes with SOL buttons installed within their campus. For any immediate assistance, you can press the button post and the campus security will reach out to help you.