Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Studying in the USA
The United States of America is one of the most desired countries by people from all over the world. However, it is not just a land of opportunity and freedom, but it is also an excellent choice for anyone looking to study abroad.
This is because the USA is not just one of the most welcoming and diverse countries in the world but, the most sought-after and highly efficient USA education system attracts thousands of aspirants students from all over the world to study in the USA. The education system in the United States has a reputation for producing some of the brightest minds and professions in the world.
This is why study in the USA for Indian students is looked upon as an esteemed opportunity. Education in the USA is a prospect to strengthen their resume, thus making it possible to secure the best job anywhere around the globe. Studying in the USA offers amazingly higher ROI.
Amongst all the other countries, the USA is at the forefront of research and technology, thus providing the best resources and equipment available to students.
Aspiring students, who are planning to fulfill their dreams to study in the USA, primarily, would have tons of questions on their minds. If you are facing a similar situation, the best way to resolve all your queries is to get in touch with an education counselor.
Seek expert advice and guidance from the best in the industry – Flamingo Educare – they are the best study abroad consultants in Ahmedabad. They will not only answer your FAQs about studying in the United States, but they will also walk you through the entire process.
What is the academic calendar for American universities?
The Academic Calendar in the United States of America majorly comprises of two semesters; spring and fall. The span of each semester is about 15 weeks with some additional summer classes as well. Generally, the academic year begins from early September till the end of May.
It is especially vital for fall intake. The first semester usually starts in August and lasts until December, including exams. The second semester lasts from January to June. The summer vacation is for around ten-twelve weeks, and winter for two-three weeks.
Most universities have summer semester in the USA for around six to eight weeks. Summer semesters include extensive modules that are 2 to 3 times above normal. Students who have to pass extra modules to cover up the missing – have to opt for summer semesters.
What are the Most Popular Courses in the United States?
There are thousands of study courses in the USA that one can pursue but some of the courses that are extremely popular amongst Indian students are Engineering, Technology, Sciences, Mathematics, Economics, Business Administration, etc.
Some of the undergraduate courses in the USA for Indian students are life science courses, computer science, engineering, life sciences, and business management courses. Flamingo Educare – Study abroad consultants in Ahmedabad will analyze your aspirations, strengths, and weaknesses to advise the best-suited course for you to study in the USA.
Are there any scholarships available in the United States for international students?
Studying in the USA can be strenuous financially. One can afford it if planned well in advance. Students can apply for several scholarships in the USA offered by American colleges and universities. These scholarships are available to deserving students who wish to fund their studies in the United States.
These financial aids can be fully paid or partially paid depending on the course, university, and several other criteria. Numerous scholarships for Indian students to study in the USA are offered by the American government, public and private organizations as well.
What is the credit system like at universities in the United States?
While you are planning to study in the USA, note that most colleges in America require students to earn credit hours, or units, or college credits to qualify for a particular degree. Almost all American universities follow the USA university credit system.
Credit is a parameter to determine the depth, length, and difficulty level of each program. Each study course in the USA is assigned to a specific number of units, hours, or credits. Credits are based on the combination of least out-of-class hours and least in-class time for course assignments. The students can earn the credits as they complete the programs. The credits increase with the increase in the level of each course.
Students receive their degrees after accumulating a certain number of college credits. The number of credit hours varies from one university to the next and from one course to the next. Hence the students need to understand the program and credits allotted to it before they shortlist the course and university.
Do I need to get a health check/immunization before applying for a student visa to the United States?
According to the USA immigration and visa laws, vaccinations are obligatory for any immigrant visa applicant. The applicant should have taken certain vaccinations before their immigrant visa issuance.
These vaccines are necessary to ensure the safety of USA citizens from any potential diseases and infections. All international students entering the USA should get vaccinated as per the norms of F1 visa vaccination requirements.
The vaccination policy has been updated to include the Covid-19 vaccine in light of the recent pandemic as well as the standard vaccination requirements for F1 Visa. Most USA universities have made it mandatory for all their international students, irrespective of the number of credits.
They should be either partially or fully vaccinated with a WHO-listed or FDA –authorized Covid-19 vaccine. The vaccine requirements differ for each university. These universities publish their vaccine requirements on their websites. These are mandatory to avail themselves of a student visa for the USA– to attend physical classes at the college campus.
The vaccination requirement is against a few diseases such as Covid-19, Hepatitis B, Varicella, Polio, Measles, Rubella, etc.
What are the different types of degrees?
The qualifications or the USA graduate degrees imparted by the institutions are Associate degrees, Bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree-professional, Master’s degree –academic, and Ph.D. or doctorate. Each degree is associated with several study courses in the USA.
The Associate degree is for job-oriented programs, a Bachelor’s degree is for a UG degree that includes four years of core courses, A Master’s degree is for students who specialize in a particular area of study, and a doctoral degree is for those students who have completed a dissertation before a panel.
Is there a minimum age requirement to enter a university in the United States?
There is no specific age limit to study in the USA. However, on average, individuals between 17 to 79 years can apply for USA student visas. Students below or above this age group may be considered as special cases. Generally, while applying for an undergraduate course, the age limit for the USA student visa is around 17 years and completing their high school.
For postgraduate courses like MA, MS, MBA, etc, there is no such regulation. There are no age restrictions for doctoral and master’s degree programs.
However, gaps between the courses are generally not acceptable unless you have certifications of any courses or job experience. The gap in the study would not be an issue, but it indicates how much you were actively pursuing something in life rather than being idle.
How can I find out which universities are the best for a particular academic major?
Once you have determined what you want to study or what program you want to pursue, you may start looking for a university that offers the course. Begin by searching online – check which universities offer the course, check their USA universities rankings.
Talk to current and former students and other people who have already taken up the course in a particular college. Examine the syllabi, courses, and other requirements of different universities in the United States. Get students’ opinions about the faculty and the program and how well they prepare students for graduation.
Is it possible to work while studying in the United States?
While planning to study in the United States, international students may work in the United States depending on the terms and conditions of their visas. Hence, first and foremost know all that is allowed and restricted on your visa. Most Indian students in the USA possess an F1 visa – this is the USA non-immigrant student visa.
F1 visa students can work while studying in the USA by following all the terms and conditions and in sync with the USA guidelines. There are various employment categories for F1 students in the USA. Apart from on-campus employment that is easily available, there are other types of off-campus employment. F1 students during their academic first year may not be allowed to work off-campus, but they may accept on-campus job opportunities subject to terms and conditions.
After completing their first year, students with an F1 visa may opt for the other types of off-campus employment. They are CPT–curricular practical training and Opt–optional practical training. International students on F1 Visa may be allowed to work off-campus based on certain conditions like severe economic hardships. Check further details about work while studying in the USA with Flamingo Educare – a study abroad consultant in Ahmedabad.
What are the English Language Proficiency requirements?
International students seeking admission in the USA University must demonstrate their English language proficiency Using scores of any of the standardized English proficiency tests. Note that graduate courses may require higher minimums based on the English language proficiency as per their study course. Except for a few exceptions, all international students must submit their English proficiency test scores for the United States, such as IELTS, PTE, or TOEFL, among others.
For International English Language Testing System – IELTS for the USA – the score required is 6.5 and higher, for PTE – Pearson Test of English – 54, and TOEFL – 80 and above. Remember that the preference for a particular English proficiency test may vary from university to university. Also, TOEFL and IELTS scores are considered valid only if they are dated within two years of your study course application deadline.
What exactly is the distinction between a college and a university?
Once the students have decided about a particular study program, they begin to check various options of universities and colleges. But often, students and their parents get confused between American Universities and American Colleges. Read further to understand the difference between the USA colleges and universities in simple language.
A college is a smaller institution that focuses on undergraduate education. There are junior colleges and community colleges that offer students two years degree courses. In addition to associate degree programs, several colleges offer four-year bachelor’s degree programs.
Whereas, a university is an institution that provides both graduate and undergraduate degrees. The undergraduate programs offered by such universities lead a student towards a doctorate or a master’s degree. They may also have a law or a medical school for students pursuing professional degree courses in their respective fields. Some universities may also provide a varied range of courses and study options.
Now, depending on the students and their study course preferences, either is better for them. Most people consider that university is better than college. But, academically, both are equal. If the student is looking for smaller-sized classes, wherein they can easily interact with their professors, then a college is a better option.
If the student is considering a wider choice of programs and classes then, the university would be the best option. It is important to note that the name of the school or institution is less important than whether it is the best fit for your preferred course.
The USA hosts millions of international students from around the world. For ages, the USA has been a truly global space to be where students from all ethnicities and countries come.
If you are an aspiring Indian student dreaming to pursue study in the USA and if you have more questions that have not already been addressed above – feel free to consult our expert study abroad counselors at Flamingo Educare. You can reach us via a call at +916351899088 / +917940001500 . Our enthusiastic counselor will be happy to guide and advise the entire process of studying in the USA.