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Study in United States

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Britannica Team
Britannica Team Updated on - Jan 18, 2024

Study in United States: USA Colleges, Fees, Intake, Admission, Visa, Top Universities, Scholarships

As per the Qs World Rankings 2020, 10,00,000 international students opting for study abroad in the top ten world ranking universities study in the five universities in the USA. The Study in USA for the international students has a wide range of courses such as finance, business, information technology, management information systems, engineering degrees such as construction, mechanical engineering, automotive, aerospace, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, telecommunications, design, digital marketing, Biotechnology, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Teaching, Nursing, etc. These programs are with paid work internships in the USA. The universities of the United States offer high-quality higher education with up to 100% scholarships. Get an MBA from prestigious US business schools such as Kellogg, Wharton, Booth, Stern etc.

Although identifying the exact factor that fuels students' enthusiasm for the country is exceedingly difficult, there exist numerous reasons that establish the United States as a favored choice for international students. Boasting 17 of the top institutions among the 50 leading global universities (according to the QS World University Rankings 2023), along with an extensive array of courses, a multicultural atmosphere, and a plethora of employment prospects, the USA encapsulates a comprehensive package of offerings.

study in USA

Study in USA: Quick Facts

Visa Approval Rate 85%
Total Institutions 4500+
Average Study Cost 40,000 to 50,000 USD
Minimum TOEFL score 85 (iBT)
Minimum IELTS score 6.5
Minimum PTE 59

How Much Does It Cost To Study In USA?

There are big differences in tuition fees for international students across states and programs. Tuition fees can range from $ 10,000 to $ 55,000 per year. Remember that you need to pay tuition fees before starting your studies.

School Tuition fees in USD (indicative)
English language studies $700 to $2,000 a month
Community colleges $6,000 to $20,000 per year
Undergraduate
bachelor degree
$20,000 to $40,000 per year
Graduate programs $20,000 to $45,000 per year
Doctoral degree $28,000 to $55,000 per year

*Please note all fee figures are indicative

Study in USA: Top Universities for Indian Students

Listed below are a selection of renowned universities in the United States that have gained global recognition, accompanied by their acceptance rates and their rankings in the QS World University Rankings 2023:

Rankings 2023 University Acceptance Rate
1 Massachusetts Institute of Technology 6.70%
3 Stanford University 3.75%
5 Harvard University 4.70%
6 California Institute of Technology 6.40%
10 University of Chicago 7.30%
13 University of Pennsylvania 8.40%
15 Princeton University 5.50%
18 Yale University 6.30%
20 Cornell University 10%
22 Columbia University 5.40%
24 Johns Hopkins University 11.20%
25 University of Michigan- Ann Arbor 20.20%
27 University of California- Berkeley 17.50%
32 Northwestern University 8.50%
39 New York Universtiy 12.20%
44 University of California- Los Angeles 9%

Why Study In USA?

A large number of international students choose to Study in USA each year. This country is world-renowned for its high standards of education, and degrees obtained in the USA have excellent international recognition. There are thousands of universities and colleges in the United States, and you can choose from amongst them based on your preferences. The US campus will expose you to a new culture, and you can join clubs and sports to boost your CV.

Study in USA For International Students

To understand what contributes to the USA's popularity among students, let's delve into a comprehensive exploration of the benefits associated with studying in the United States.

  • Top Universities: The United States of America takes a significant lead in hosting a substantial number of highly ranked universities for advanced education on a global scale. Among the world's top 20 universities listed by Times Higher Education, 15 of them hail from the United States. According to the QS World Ranking, the top 4 universities globally are MIT, Stanford, Harvard, and Caltech.
  • Flexible Education System: The credit transfer system within the US education framework introduces a higher level of adaptability. Undergraduate students are encouraged to delve into different fields of study, ultimately selecting a major by the conclusion of their second year. This system provides an array of both traditional and non-traditional majors and minors, granting the freedom to decide when and how many courses to take each semester. This flexibility forms a robust foundation that enables individuals to evolve and adapt based on their strengths and areas for improvement.
  • Diverse Range of Courses: In USA University provides a plethora of opportunities with a staggering count of over 2 million programs. These offerings are available through both 4-year and 2-year institutions, encompassing Bachelor's and Master's courses, in addition to various other programs such as Doctoral, Vocational, Associate, and Certificate courses.
  • STEM OPT: The USA offers an abundance of degrees categorized as 'STEM eligible,' affording international students a definite prospect of extending their stay in the country by an additional two years following the completion of their degrees. Those who undertake STEM courses in the USA benefit from practical training that goes beyond the typical one-year allowance, simultaneously permitting them to engage in employment with a US-based organization.
  • Research and Innovation: The USA stands at the forefront of global Research and Development. According to the National Science Foundation (NSF), universities in the USA invested approximately 22 billion dollars in research and innovation in the year 2015.
  • Employment Prospects: Upon completing their degrees, a significant 62% of international students secure job placements in the USA. The median salary range after obtaining a four-year degree in the USA typically spans from around 61,000 to 120,700 USD during the mid-career phase.

The United States offers a diverse range of educational opportunities, including STEM degrees and business administration. Regardless of your chosen major, the United States is sure to have a program to suit you. The US is a cosmopolitan country with modern cities and world-class higher education institutions. The country is also a leader in culture, science, and politics, and its students are often coveted by employers from around the world.

While studying in the USA, you will get exposure to a variety of different cultures. As a melting pot of races, cultures, and languages, the United States offers an environment that allows for tolerance and acceptance of all cultures. The diversity in the United States will allow you to gain a unique set of skills and personality traits. A diverse education is a competitive advantage. You’ll have a chance to study in diverse communities and gain valuable experiences that will last a lifetime.

Study In USA Education System For International Students

The USA is home to the international community which is increasing year by year. To study in the USA from India, the student has to meet the eligibility criteria for study in the USA as completion of 10+2.Before applying to the universities in the USA, the student needs to understand the type of degree, duration and the detail of course for study in the USA are as:

Degree Duration Details of course
Undergraduate degree in USA 4 years Equivalent to a Bachelor degree.
Associate degree in USA 2 years Its 2 years are equivalent to the first 2 years of a Bachelor degree.
Master degree in USA 2- 3 years Has core courses, minor, major & elective courses.
MBA or ME degree in USA 2 years Specialisation in core subjects.
Doctorate degree in USA 5 – 8 years Specialisation in a subject.

Popular Courses In USA For International Students

There are popular courses for which the international students in USA opt for such as health care and sciences, business and management, Engineering, Arts and MBBS.

Course Eligibility Application deadline 2022- 23
Engineering IELTS, SAT
  • Fall- Nov 21-Dec22
  • Spring- Feb 22
  • Summer- March 22
Business Management IELTS, GMAT Jan 22
MBBS 55% in 10+ 2(PCM) Sep 22
Arts IELTS Sep 22

Popular Courses to Study in USA

The United States provides an extensive range of programs covering nearly every conceivable field of study. However, there are certain favourites among international candidates that consistently top the list for most aspirants. Primarily, STEM courses in the USA dominate this list, yet other programs also hold an exceptional appeal and are greatly favored by many.

Some of the best courses that you can apply for study in USA if you are an international applicant include:

MS MBA MBBS
MS in Data Science Masters in Business Analytics Masters in Finance
MS in Computer Science MS in Data Analytics Masters in Management
MS in Civil Engineering MS in Artificial Intelligence BBA 
MS in Engineering Management M.Arch Masters in Cybersecurity
B.Tech Masters in Economics Masters in Supply Chain Management
Masters in Mechanical Engineering Masters in Project Management Masters in Information Systems
B.Sc Computer Science Masters in International Business Masters in Digital Marketing

If you're seeking prominent research and innovation prospects in fields such as neuroscience, climatic changes, and other emerging domains, bachelor's programs offered by esteemed universities like MIT, Yale, UCLA, Georgia Institute of Technology, University of Colorado Denver, and Washington State University should unquestionably be included in your list.

Top Universities to Study In USA For International Students

According to the data survey done the World Ranking ,the popular universities among the students to study in the USA 2021 are as:

World Rank University Location Overall Score
1 Harvard University Cambridge,US 93.3
2 Stanford University Stanford,US 88.9
3 Massachusetts Institute of Technology(MIT) Cambridge,US 85.6
4 University of California,Berkeley(UCB) Berkeley 77.7
5 University of California(UCLA) Los Angeles,US 77.5
6 Yales University New Haven,US 75.4
7 Columbia University New York, US 75.1
8 Princeton University Princeton,US 74.1
9 New York University(NYU) New York,US 73.3
10 University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia,US 73.2

How to Study in USA? Step-by-Step Guide

Outlined below is a 6-step application process, accompanied by pre-application and post-application measures:

  1. Research the options: Since the USA is home to some of the great and most prestigious universities in the world, it is highly essential that you do thorough research regarding the factors that matter the most to you while making this vital decision. The factors may vary from rankings, expenses, prestige, availability of the program of your choice to the average acceptance rate and admission requirements of that organization.
  2. Plan your finances: The expense of education in the USA varies based on factors such as the chosen program, the institution's type (private or public), and the level of study, whether it's a Bachelor's, Master's, or PhD. Pursuing a bachelor's degree in the USA can amount to approximately 15,000 to 55,000 USD per year, while a master's program might entail fees ranging from 15,000 to 30,000 USD per year.
  3. Prepare your application: It's advisable to strategize your application well in advance and observe the patterns regarding the factors that hold the most influence over the admission process at your chosen institution. Devote significant attention to enhancing your overall student profile, with a special focus on aspects such as letters of recommendation, personal essays, statements of purpose, and the interview process.
  4. Look for standardized exams to study in the US: International applicants are typically required to provide evidence of their English language proficiency, which can be demonstrated through tests like IELTS, TOEFL, PTE, or their equivalents. Additionally, depending on the specific course and program level you decide to pursue, there might be a need for other test scores such as GRE, GMAT, SAT, or ACT.
  5. Apply for USA visa: International candidates aiming to study in the USA must possess a valid visa. After securing an admission offer from the university and obtaining an I-20 form, the subsequent crucial step involves applying for a student visa at the nearest US Embassy or consulate.
  6. Be ready for departure: Once your visa is approved, time to pack your bags, inform your university, and prepare yourself for a journey to your dream destination for study in USA.

How Much Does It Cost To Study In USA?

There are big differences in tuition fees for international students across states and programs. Tuition fees can range from $ 10,000 to $ 55,000 per year. Remember that you need to pay tuition fees before starting your studies.

School Tuition fees in USD (indicative)
English language studies $700 to $2,000 a month
Community colleges $6,000 to $20,000 per year
Undergraduate
bachelor degree
$20,000 to $40,000 per year
Graduate programs $20,000 to $45,000 per year
Doctoral degree $28,000 to $55,000 per year

*Please note all fee figures are indicative

Fee Structure of Studying in USA

The basic cost of living and tuition fee breaks down to provide an estimated cost of expenses required to survive an academic year at the institute is as tabulated below.

Tuition Fees Amount (in INR, Per Year)
Average tuition Fees( UG) Public 2-year colleges 2.76 lakhs
Public 4-year colleges 7.73 lakhs
Private 4-year college 26.95 lakhs
Average tuition Fees (PG) Public institution 19.39 lakhs
Private institutions 23.27 lakhs
Health Insurance 1.55 to 28.5 lakhs

Cost of Living in USA

Other additional charges that form the list of expenses for international students comprising the cost of living in the USA is as follows:

Type of Expenditure Average Cost (in USD/Year) Average Cost (in INR/Year)
Food On campus: USD 250
Off-campus: USD 400
On campus: INR 20,620
Off-campus: INR 32,990
Transportation USD 500 INR 41,240
Utilities USD 500 INR 41,240
Internet pass USD 70 INR 5,775
Gas and Electricity USD 160 INR 13,196
Entertainment USD 200 INR16,495
Books, Supplies, and other Learning material USD 250 INR 20,620
Accommodation USD 10,500 INR 8,66,024

Admission Requirements For Study In USA

The admission procedure for study in the USA is firstly to figure out which universities provide the desired courses and when is the intake, what is the eligibility criteria for it and apply to the university in the USA then go for the student visa for the USA. The procedure can be followed in an organized way as:

  • Step1: Select the course desired:
    Start searching the top courses in demand in the USA so that the work opportunity after completing the courses is good. Check a few courses which you are interested in applying to study in the USA.
  • Step 2:
    Which Universities provide the selected course Shortlist the universities in the USA after you have decided about the courses. Explore the location of the university and check the ranking of the university.
  • Step 3:
    Contact the desired university After selecting the university from the list of universities and their locations, then contact the university where you want to pursue the program of study in the USA. Inquire about the tuition fee and the accommodation (whether on- campus or off- campus) to make the admission procedure hassle free.
  • Step 4:
    Check the admission criteria of the same university Check the required documents for the university admission in the USA and the other eligibility criteria for entry into the university in the USA. In case of any doubt, you may contact the best study abroad consultants “Britannica Overseas” where the expert counsellors are going to help you.
  • Step 5:
    Go for the requisite entrance exams See which entrance examination is required for the admission into the university program and what score is needed for the same. Get clear about the language proficiency exams such as IELTS/ TOEFL and other required exams such as GMAT/ GRE/ SAT. Go for the exam at least 6 months before the intake of the university.
  • Step 6:
    Get Letter of Reference & Statement of Purpose in hand
    Get Letter of Reference from the professor or the employer which gives the overview of your study or work performance. Sometimes, the applicants are asked to submit the resume as well. In brief, LOR, SOP for study in the USA and Resume plays an important role in deciding the selection of an applicant.
  • Step 7:
    Apply to the university Fill the application form of the university and submit the form. The merit candidates can get the scholarships of the university for study in the USA which the student has to submit a separate form of scholarship along with the application form.
  • Step 8:
    Get the Letter of Acceptance Wait for the Letter of Acceptance from the university in the USA which shows your acceptance otherwise if you fail to get it, it’s a refusal from the university.Apply to multiple universities so as to secure your place in the best one.
  • Step 9:
    Pay the university fee Now it’s the time to pay the university fee after getting the Letter of Acceptance (LOA)which best suits your needs. Pay the required fees of the desired university to secure your place in the university.
  • Step 10:
    Apply for the student visa Apply for the student visa and beforehand it’s better get prepared for the finances for the entire program. The student may apply for the education loan before applying for the study visa for the USA.

Admission Process For Bachelor’s In The USA

  • The student must have completed 10+2 from the recognised board and with a good GPA score.
  • The minimum GPA score required is 2.5
  • The student needs to take a minimum language proficiency test such as TOEFL with a minimum score of 61 to 89.
  • Get your educational credentials at hand in the original copy and its translation copies also.
  • ACT (American College Testing) and SAT are required for the admission in the university.
  • Get LOR and SOPs.
  • Need to show the financial evidence for tuition fees, living costs.

Admission Process For Master’s In The USA

  • The student must have completed the 10+ 2 and degree of 2 years or 3 years or 4 years.
  • GPA score of minimum range 3- 3.25
  • The language test for English proficiency such as TOEFL with a score of 78 to 100.
  • Check whether GMAT or GRE is required.
  • The documents regarding the personal information.
  • Produce the financial funds proof for the tuition fee and living expenses.
  • MBA admission requires the resume submission.

Exams Required For The Bachelor’s Study In The USA

Language Proficiency Test Other Required Exams
IELTS(International English Language Testing System SAT(Scholastic Aptitude Test)
TOEFL(Test Of English as a Foreign Language) ACT(American College Test)
PTE(Pearson Test of English) LSAT( Law School Admission Test)
Duolingo English Test  

Exams Required For The Master’s Study In The USA

Language Proficiency Test Other Required Exams
IELTS GRE
PTE GMAT
TOEFL  
Duolingo English Test  

Student Visa For The USA

student visa in USA is your key to start studying in the best universities in United States. There are three different types of a student visa in the USA as:

Type of Student visa Description
F1 student visa To study at college or English language school.
J Exchange Visa As an exchange program for high school and university study.
M Student Visa Vocational study or training in US
Steps For US Student Visa:
  1. Apply to the educational institute where you want to study.
  2. After being accepted, fill the I-20 form of the institute’s international student office. This is your acceptance at SEVP approved school.
  3. Pay the application fee for the SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System).
  4. Fill the non immigrant visa application and form DS-160.
  5. Submit the photograph in the requisite format as per the student visa instructions.
  6. Submit the additional academic documents as the transcripts, diplomas, degrees or certificates.
  7. To be eligible for the student visa for the US, the student has to show proof of proficiency in English language tests such as IELTS or TOEFL.
  8. Show the proof of funds as in the bank statements or the scholarship or the sponsorship.
  9. Evidence of leaving the US after completion of the studies in the US.
  10. Finally, there will be an interview for the processing of a student visa.
  11. For F and M student visas, the student visa application fee is $350 and for J student visa, the visa application fee is $220(which needs to be submitted along with the student visa application).

List Of Scholarships For Study In USA 2022

Below is a selection of USA scholarships for international students, funded by the US government, some funded by private organizations and some funded by specific institutions. Good luck with your applications! We are pleased to inform you that below mentioned schools are providing scholarships for Undergraduate and Post Graduate courses for spring:

  • Adelphi University
  • American University
  • Auburn University
  • Cleveland State University
  • Florida International University
  • Louisiana State University
  • University of Dayton
  • University of Illinois at Chicago
  • University of Massachusetts Boston
  • University of South Carolina
  • University of the Pacific – Stockton
  • University of Utah

Read Full Info about Scholarships To Study In USA For International Students

The Full Scholarship For Study In The USA

For the international students in the USA pursuing the Master’s degree the Fulbright International scholarship is given. This scholarship is also for the international students in the USA who want to complete the doctorate programs. The scholarship can cover the tuition fee, books cost, air travel cost, a stipend and medical insurance. For eligibility for the scholarship in the USA, the student must be on the merit list who have excelled in their academics and the professional achievements.

Top Cities To Study In USA

According to the QS Best Student Cities Index 2020, the best top ten cities in the USA which are regarded as the best cities to live for the international students are as:

  • Boston
  • New York
  • San Francisco
  • Chicago
  • Los Angeles
  • Washington
  • Philadelphia
  • Pittsburgh
  • Atlanta
  • Baltimore

Work Opportunities During Study In USA

The international student in the USA who is pursuing the undergraduate or graduate degree can be eligible for an on campus job as a part of an internship program. These internship programs in the USA help you to develop the different skills required for the future job and many students get an opportunity to develop an internship into a full US job offer.


Study In United States FAQs
The study in the USA has shown 13% drop due to Covid in the total count of the international students but still the number of Indian students among the international students is the second largest in the world who go for study in the USA.
After graduating from high school, the students can go for college or university study. College or university education is called higher education. In the USA, there is GPA, which is a grade system giving the assessment of credentials.
The popular universities in the USA are Harvard University, Stanford university, MIT, UCLA, Yale University, University of Pennsylvania.
The popular study programs for study in the USA are MBA, MS, MIM, MS Biology, MS Nursing, MS in Sports Science.
The tuition fee for study in the USA is $20,000 to $40,000 per year for a graduate degree plus the living cost ranging between $6000 to $14,000 depending on the area in which you live.
Fulbright is the full scholarship scheme for the international students who wish to pursue their studies in the USA.
Yes, the students can go for the on campus jobs limited to the university campus area where a student can do a job in a library, cafeteria, or reception of the university.
Firstly, the student needs to have a valid passport to apply for a study visa of the USA from India. Then the admission process of the university is to be followed and get the letter from university which is required to be presented for the study visa.
The study in the USA can be considered to be free in case the student is eligible to get the full tuition fee for the entire degree program
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Top Universities In United States for International Students

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