UG study in US

Undergraduate Study in USA The ‘Liberal Arts’ Philosophy US undergraduate education is based on the liberal arts philosophy, which believe...

Undergraduate Study in USA

The ‘Liberal Arts’ Philosophy

US undergraduate education is based on the liberal arts philosophy, which believes in providing as well-rounded academic education that develops the student’s verbal written, and reasoning skills. The essence of this philosophy is that education begins with a breadth of education in your field of choice initially and then it gradually acquires depth in your area of interest as you progress.

Types of Institutions
Public Universities: Public universities obtain a part of their support from the state in which they are located and the tuition they charge from the students is often lower than that charged by private universities. However, international students as well as those from other states are considered out-of-state residents and therefore do not benefit from reduced tuition at state institutions.
Private Universities: Private intuitions funded by a combination of endowments, tuition fees, research grants, and gifts form their alumni. Tuition fees tend to be higher at private universities than at state universities, but there is no distinction made between sate and non-state residents.

Community colleges: Community colleges provide two-year associate degree programmes, usually called the associate of arts(AA) or associate of science(AS) degrees as well as excellent technical and vocational programme. Community colleges can be public or private institutions and are sometimes called junior colleges or two year colleges.

Accreditation : Unlike most countries, there is no centralized ministry of education in the US that dictates requirements to US colleges and universities. The US Dept of Education and CHEA (Council for Higher Education and Accreditation) reviews and recognizes “ accrediting agencies” which in turn assure certain acceptable standards of educational institutions, programmes, services and facilities. Since each institutions determines its own programme and admission standards admission criteria varies from school to school. So it is important to be sure that the school to which you are accredited by a recognized accrediting agency.

Academic Year: An academic year in the United States lasts for nine months. Semester system, which means a nine-month academic year, is divided into two equal parts. There is also the trimester system where the academic year is divided into three equal parts and the quarter system where the year is divided into four equal parts. Spring semester is form Jan to May and Fall semester is form August or September to December. An optional summer term is also available in some universities.
Short listing Schools: There are more than 3600 colleges and universities that offer undergraduate degree programmes in the US. This vast choice means there are programmes available to meet every one’s needs, but how does one find the best programme?

You can get a good idea of a school’s selectivity by the scores they require on academic admissions tests. Do not limit your selection to only the most famous internationally known institutions or rankings. Consider factor s such as the quality of the institution or department, the admission requirements, the cost (and the availability of financial aid, the size of the institution, the location, housing policies etc. Some time it helps to limit your search to one region of the US, such as the east or west coast, before looking for school that match your other requirements. The most important factors in choosing a location are climate and cost of living.
Equivalence of a US high School degree (12 years of schooling), good consistent academic performance, language proficiency, completion of the required standardized tests like TOEFL(www.toefl.org) and SAT(www.college-board.com), proof of adequate financial resources are the usual entry requirements. Selective programmes will require the SAT II subjects test as well.

Application process and requirements: The admission process is along one, and should ideally begin at least 12 to 18 months prior to the academic year in which you hope to enroll.

Early application: There are two types of early plans, both non binding and binding, which are offered by several hundred colleges that use regular application calendar

Early action (EA): Early action plan gives you an admission decision form the School/University well in advance of the institutions regular response date, wherein you have the flexibility to weigh your options with other institutions before you make the commitment (non-binding)

Early decision(ED): early decision is the application process in which students make commitments to first choice institutions where, if admitted, they definitely will enroll (binding). The college will intimate you about their decision of whether you have been admitted or not. By choosing this decision, you have made a commitment to attend that college and surrendered the right to wait to make a decision.

Application form: Is increasingly available online. Check individual school websites for the same.

Application fee: Almost all universities charge a non –refundable application fee that covers the cost of processing your application. It must be paid in US dollars. Check the school’s application form, website or catalogue for the current cost.

Academic transcripts: Each college will specify the types of official records it requires to documents past education. In addition to transcripts, you must also send certified copies of the originals of secondary school diplomas, certificates final examination re

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