U.S.A has a higher literacy rate as compared to other countries and is ranked among the top in the world for the highest percentage of individuals with degrees. This is primarily because of the high quality of education offered, rising number of institutes of higher education, highly skilled educators and an equal emphasis on practical and theoretical learning. The U.S system of education offers ample opportunities for students to gain knowledge, broaden horizons and understanding, gather varied life enriching experiences while making a significant addition to their employability. Flexibility of the system allows students to choose subjects of their liking, which is one of the reasons why it is a popular destination for many foreign students.

Overview of US Education System


The U.S education system has many positive factors, demands out of the box thinking and thus allows students to discover their complete potential. This adds to its appeal making U.S.A one of the most ideal destinations for higher education.

Over the past two decades, many US universities have been offering individual courses or even full time degrees at undergraduate and graduate levels online, facilitated through the Internet. Some institutes also offer 'low-residency programs' which are mostly online and require some on campus attendance. The fact that online courses can be taken while working makes them popular amongst professionals. Students may prefer online courses for flexibility and convenience. Usually, online courses with credits that count towards a degree charge a fee while courses without credits are mostly free. Course fees can vary widely from one university to another but in general online colleges are more affordable than the traditional ones.

In general all of the top universities ask for a good GRE/GMAT score and proficiency in English needs to be established through tests like IELTS/TOFEL. It is advisable to understand the eligibility criterion of the university you are applying to as a few universities do accept applicants without a GRE score. Universities examine all applications throughly before admitting the student.

Two main intake seasons of U.S. universities are Fall and Spring. Fall semester begins around mid of August and ends in December. Spring intake starts in the month of January and concludes in early May. Some universities allow a summer intake where new students can be accepted in May. Fall intakes usually see higher applicants and many of the deserving students choose to apply for the Fall semester.

Foreign students require an F-1 visa for attending academic institutions. This visa allows them to stay in the United States while being enrolled as a full time student. All students with F-1 visas are allowed to work part time during courses and full time during vacations to support tuition and other expenses. Other visa types include J-1 visa for exchange students and M-1 visa for non academic studies.

Studying in USA is not exactly cheap, especially for foreign students. The higher education system in USA is highly decentralized and fee structures are largely unregulated. Public and non profit institutes charge lesser tuition and other fees as compared to private institutes. International students are almost always charged much higher than the US nationals. However some universities do have a policy of providing financial assistance to deserving international students. Students may apply for full/part scholarships and educational loans or may choose to work on or off campus to cover education and living expenses.

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