How to choose a university abroad | Top 6 factors
‘What university should I go to?’ is a question on every student’s mind when they think of studying abroad. There are so many factors to consider when you start searching for the perfect university. The process can get complex and confusing. But if you keep these six factors in mind, you’ll know the basics of how to choose a university.
Finding and shortlisting universities is the very first step towards achieving your dream of studying abroad. While it is good to have a dream university in your mind, it is equally important to shortlist a few other universities as a backup. Shortlisting universities according to your preference isn’t as difficult as it seems if you know what exactly to look for in a college. Here, we have listed down some of the top factors that will tell you exactly how to choose a university when you think of studying abroad!
Availability of your program
Some programs such as Arts, Business Administration, Science, etc. are available in almost every university. However, if you are looking for a specialized program (like financial computing), there are chances that it might not be available at your dream university. So before you shortlist the university, make sure to look for the availability and the details of your desired program. It can be one of the top factors in how to choose a university.
Location and community
As a student living away from home, it is necessary to find a safe community to live around. Try finding the university with accommodation options in a safe, friendly neighborhood. You could also look for a location that has companies near the campus. This will make finding a summer internship and a training program easier. For example, some of the most frequented states and best places in the USA are New York, Massachusetts, and California.
An engaging curriculum goes a long way in holding the students’ interest in their education. If you choose a graduate program, make sure it does not have too many courses that have been covered in your undergrad classes. It is also necessary to check that the core courses cover your area of study. You can find the courses offered in the program on the university website.
Requirements or Admission Criteria
Criteria are one of the top factors in choosing a college. This needs to be researched thoroughly on the university website or through other mediums. It is necessary to check the minimum GPA required to get into a particular university. Keep in mind that not every university asks for GRE/GMAT and IELTS/TOEFL scores. It is easier to shortlist the universities and measure the chances of getting accepted by checking the admission criteria on the university website.
Tuition and financial aid
Funding is always a hurdle in your dreams of studying abroad. Tuition fees for MS in the USA usually range from $14,000 USD to $60,000 USD. If funding is an issue, you can consider the various scholarships and financial aid options offered. Almost every college offers financial aid to the students that deserve it and for an international student, it is certainly one of the top factors in choosing a college.
The scholarships for MS could cover the full tuition or some amount of your tuition fees. Consider the colleges offering high financial aids. There are various scholarships for Indian students in the USA such as Nehru Full-bright Scholarship, Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation Scholarships, Tata Scholarship for Cornell University, Stanford Reliance Dhirubhai Fellowship, S N Bose Scholars Program.
Checking the acceptance rate of the university can also help you predict your chances of getting in. Universities with high acceptance rates tend to accept students from every academic background. On the other hand, universities with low acceptance rates will take in selective students. Narrow down the universities with higher international student acceptance rates and apply!
Is there anything else I should know?
It’s true. All the points mentioned above will tell you exactly how to choose a university abroad. But there’s one more thing you can consider – the faculty. If the teachers are currently involved in research or are really well-known, that could be an amazing bonus. After all, one of the most important things about studying in your dream university is the quality of education.
At iSchoolConnect, we strive to make the shortlisting process as simple and easy as possible. Our experts guide you through the process of shortlisting the universities and finding the program which will be the best fit for you based on your scores and preferences.