USA as a Study Destination

Indian study assosiation

The United States of America is home to diverse ethnicities, breath-taking landscapes and the highest number of top ranked universities worldwide. As per the QS World Ranking 2019, 33 of the top 100 universities are based in the United States. Moreover, there are countless opportunities for gaining experience in a global setting, is bound to quite easily be the best-selling capability on your resume. Naturally, pursuing higher education in USA has been a top choice for Indian students.

Quick points to note before applying for study abroad in USA

Capital: Washington D.C

Major Cities to Study in USA

  • Boston
  • New York
  • Los Angeles
  • Chicago
  • Philadelphia


Time Zone: USA has 4 different time zones – Pacific Time, Mountain Time, Central Time & Eastern time (India is 9 Hours 30 Mins ahead of Washington D.C. )
Currency: US Dollars ($)
Language Spoken: English

 (Also read:Life in USA – Guide for an Indian Student)

Study in USA for Indian Students

As you might already know, higher education in USA is highly preferred by students across the globe. It is the country that offers students exponential amount of knowledge, better job prospects and valuable experience. Every year thousands and thousands of students enroll in American universities. These universities offer courses in almost every program imaginable. Moreover, there are several reasons why students opt to study in USA –

Here are top 5 reasons why studying in USA will benefit your future:

  1. Academic flexibility
  2. Research & training opportunities
  3. State-of-the-art learning technology
  4. Help & Support for international students
  5. The American education system

Still wondering why study in USA? Read this list of 7 reasons to choose USA for higher education!

US Education System

Just like in India, the US Education system also has primary (elementary) and secondary (Middle & High School) schooling. Students typically complete their primary and secondary schooling in 12 years.  In the US, grades and GGPA are considered to be the measurement of your academic performance.

The school calendar is generally from August/September till May/June. The academic year can be divided into semester or trimester. Some universities offer multiple intakes based on the type of course.

Find out which American city makes it to the top 10 student-friendly cities in the world: Top 10 Cities in the World to be a Student

Type of Courses

  • Undergraduate Courses

Typically, it takes about four years to earn a bachelor’s degree. You can either begin your studies in pursuit of a bachelor’s degree at a community college or a four-year university or college. During your undergraduate studies, you get to choose a major at the beginning of your third year. ‘Major ‘is the specific field which is the focus of your degree.

The best part about the American Education System is that you can change your major multiple times based on your interests. However, keep in mind that this means more courses, time and money.

  • Second Level: Graduate in Pursuit of a Master’s Degree

Graduate programs are for those who have completed their undergrad and are looking to advance their career with a Master’s degree. This degree is usually mandatory for higher-level positions in organizations. Certain master’s programs require specific tests, such as the LSAT for law school, the GRE or GMAT for business school, and the MCAT for medical school.

The majority of a master’s program is spent in classroom study and a graduate student must prepare a long research paper called a “master’s thesis” or complete a “master’s project.”

  • Third Level: Graduate in Pursuit of a Doctorate Degree

Many graduate students consider master’s degree as the first step towards earning a PhD (doctorate). However, there are some schools that help students prepare directly for a doctorate without a master’s degree. It may take three years or more to earn a PhD degree. For international students, it may take as long as five or six years.

Top Courses

USA offers diverse range of programs. Universities in USA conduct program specializations of almost of every branch of study. Masters in US is the most commonly pursued program by international students, Doctorate is the second most sought after program whereas Bachelors is the third most preferred program. The education system in USA attracts many international students. The pedagogy offered is also highly reliable.

Engineering, Science, Management and Arts related programs are well-known in the United States. MS in USA and MBA in USA are currently is the most pursued types of educational degree. Individuals can obtain plethora of knowledge by studying any of the specializations at any top universities in USA. You can study MS in USA or Bachelors in USA or PhD in USA at globally acclaimed institutes.

To help you further, we have listed down specific popular programs in USA according to echelon of higher education. Find list of universities in USA below!

Top under-graduate branches in USA:

  • Bachelor of Fine Arts
  • Bachelor of Business Administration
  • Bachelor of Computer Science
  • Bachelors in Engineering
  • Bachelor of Arts in Business Communication
  • Bachelors of Business Accounting

Top post-graduate branches in USA:

  • Masters in Engineering
  • Masters of Science in Computer Science
  • Masters in Data Science
  • Masters in Corporate Management
  • Masters in Telecommunications Management
  • Masters in Artificial Intelligence
  • Masters in Financial Engineering
  • Masters in Marketing
  • Masters in Pharmacy
  • Masters in International Management

Other programs offered in the USA!

Top doctorate branches in USA:

  • PhD in Biomedical Engineering
  • PhD in Statistics
  • PhD in Communication
  • PhD Economics and Finance

Cost of Studies

United States is undoubtedly an expensive country for higher education. The education expenses vary according to the level, type of program and also geographic location. It also depends on the type of university one enrolls. Community colleges are comparatively cheaper than private universities. Generally, education and accommodation altogether on average of study in USA cost ranges from $25,000 to $50,000 each year.

Methods to deal with cost of studying in USA for Indian students include scholarships and education loans. Scholarships in USA are offered to international students for majority of courses. Education loans are also offered by banks and institutions for pursuing higher education.

Learn the process to apply for student loans in USA!


Check out scholarship essay samples!

Top Universities

Perhaps, United States is one of the countries that most number of top ranked universities. The universities in USA are not only well known for their education system but also the pedagogy that is offered to students.


Check out these top 15 universities in USA that offer most of the academic programs:

  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Stanford University, California
  • Columbia University, New York
  • Yale University, Connecticut
  • University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
  • Boston University, Massachusetts
  • New York University, New York
  • Carnegie Mellon University, Pennsylvania
  • University of Southern California, California
  • Cornell University, New York
  • Purdue University, Indiana
  • University of Chicago, Illinois
  • Duke University, North Carolina
  • John Hopkins University, Maryland

*Note: The universities have been listed randomly and not according to the specific ranking!

Read: Tips on how to choose the right college to study abroad.


Check out the program, colleges and universities of USA!

Exams to Study abroad in US

Depending on the type of program and field of study prerequisites have been structured each university. The requirements may vary for each educational program. To help the aspiring students, we have compiled a list that gives basic level information on prerequisites for university and visa applications.

Check out following list to acquire basic knowledge about the entrance exams that you need to give before applying in a university of USA!

Under-Graduate entry requirements for universities of USA:

Bachelors of Arts:

Specializations include Social Science, Humanity or Fine Arts related programs


Bachelor of Science:

Specializations include Physical or Mathematical Science related programs

BSc in USA

Bachelor of Business Administration:

Specializations include Finance, marketing, accounting, information management, economics, risk management, sports management, etc.



Bachelor of Engineering:

Specializations include Biomedical engineering, construction engineering, facilities engineering, electrical engineering, chemical engineering, etc.


Post-Graduate entry requirements for universities of USA:

Masters of Business Administration:

Specializations include Marketing, Human Resources, Agri-Business management, Operations management, Executive MBA, Finance, Accounting, Information Systems, etc.



Masters of Fine Arts:

Specializations include Performance, Contemporary arts, Digital photography, history of photography, Motion graphics, Graphic Designing, etc.

Masters in Fine Arts in USA


Masters of Science:

Specializations include Computer Science, Accounting, Administration, Corporate communication, Project management, Engineering, Economics, etc.

MSc in USA

Masters of Education:

Specializations include Initial Licensure, Educational Leadership, Mathematics, School Counselling, Childhood Education, etc.

Master of Education in USA


Masters of Engineering:

Specializations include Aerospace Engineering, Mechanical and Aerospace engineering, Civil engineering, structural engineering, etc.

Masters of Engineering in USA


Doctorate programs entry requirements for universities of USA:

Doctor of Philosophy/PhD:

Specializations include Doctor of nursing practice, Dental Surgery, Mathematics and Applied Mathematics, Juridical science, Law, etc.



Read: Country-wise, Entrance Exam


Also read: Mistakes you must avoid on your university applications

Application Process to Study in US

Application Process for studying in universities of USA is considerably easy. However, knowing the education system briefly before starting is extremely necessary. The procedure may require attention of an individual at-least 1.5 years before attending the official semester.

To make it easier for you, we have composed an article that has everything you should know about how to apply in universities of USA – it includes timeline, tips, frequently asked questions, procedure and intakes about universities in United States!

Visa Process (brief)

Visa process can often be stressful. However, because USA is one of the most sought-after destinations visa procedure is considerably simpler. There are three types of student visas regardless the most common one is F-1 student visa. Other student visa types are J-1 Exchange visa visitor and M-1 Vocational/Non-Academic student visa.

F-1 student visa

  •  Most of the students apply for F-1 visa. Individuals pursuing Under-graduate, Post-graduate programs on full-time or part-time basis apply for F-1 visas
  • On part-time basis during semesters, students are allowed to work 20 hours per week

F-1 visa process:

  • Collect Form I-20 from college, it is issued by the colleges in USA
  • Pay application fee for Form I-901, through USA immigration and customs enforcement
  • Print the application SEVIS fee receipt
  • Apply for online student visa application form DS-160
  • Print out the application confirmation page
  • Pay visa application fee
  • Print out the application fee receipt
  • Schedule an appointment for USA student visa interview (You will find your DS-160 application and fee receipt at the end of this process)

Documents to carry for F-1 student visa process:

  • Passport
  • Passport size photographs
  • DS-160 application confirmation print-out
  • Student visa application fee receipt
  • Appointment letter
  • Print outs of Form I-901 and SEVIS fee receipt 

Educational documents to carry for F-1 student visa process:

  • Mark-sheets
  • Entrance exam score sheets

Financial documents to carry for F-1 student visa process:

  • Tax Returns record of past 3 years
  • Bank statements or passbook
  • Original salary slips and Employment letter
  • Statement for CA
  • Loan approval letter
  • Scholarship letter (if the applicant has received one)

Scholarships for Indians to Study in US

More useful information:

Click on the links below for further information on studying in USA:

^These numbers are according to the report released in March, 2016 by Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP), part of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI.)

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