Application Schedule for 2011
The following table gives a general idea of the best time of year in which students should submit applications and documents in order to enroll in student’s desired quarter, trimester, or semester. Of course, as this is only a generalization, the actual time frames will vary depending upon the school. Please contact one of our advisors for further and more specific information.
|Term||Application submission period beginning|
|Fall||October through December|
|Winter||June through August|
|Spring||August through October|
|Summer||October through December|
If English is not your native language, or you have not had three years of your secondary education taught in English, you will be required to provide proof of your English proficiency. Since nearly every class at a U.S. university is taught in English, you must demonstrate your ability to read, hear, write, and speak English sufficiently.
Most U.S. colleges use the TOEFL test to measure your English proficiency. This exam is given year-round at permanent testing centers around the world. Three versions of the test are given – though be aware that most U.S. universities these days only accept scores of the two of them:
- The TOEFL PBT (paper-based test)
- The TOEFL iBT (internet-based test)
At the baccalaureate level (college or university), a minimum of 500 on the paper-based test or 61 on the internet-based test is required on most U.S. campuses. Check with your desired school(s) to find out the specific required score(s).
At the post-baccalaureate level (graduate school), minimum scores of 550 (PBT) or 80 (iBT) are required on most campuses. Check with your desired school(s) to find out the specific required score(s).
Should you need to take the TOEFL test, we at USIEC recommend that you take the necessary version of it as soon as possible. There are registration deadlines for the TOEFL exam, and score results take approximately 2-5 weeks to be revealed. Educational Testing Service (ETS), the company that operates the TOEFL test, will send your scores directly to each school to which you are applying. Make sure to request this service in order to expedite the process. For more information about the TOEFL test, go to www.toefl.org.
The campus will evaluate your high school or secondary school work as part of their admission determination unless you have completed 60 semester units of transferable college work (generally, two years of study). You are required to provide all official academic records from any postsecondary institution you have attended and your secondary or high school records if required.
In the U.S., the academic record is usually referred to as a “transcript.” These documents may be called something else in other countries – leaving certificate, maturity certificate, bachillerato, or baccalauréat.
It is very important that your academic records and examination scores be sent as early as possible. The campus review of your application cannot begin until all of your academic records are received. Official academic records from foreign institutions must be on file at least eight weeks before registration for the first term and, if not written in English, must be accompanied by certified English translations. Many campuses require official records sooner. Contact the campus international admission office to learn about deadlines.
- TOEFL or IELTS Score Reports.
- GRE or GMAT Score Reports.
- GRE Subject Score Reports. Not every major requires a GRE subject score, but having one could help you in obtaining a scholarship.
- Four-year undergraduate official transcripts. If you have already graduated, then you must provide transcripts of all of your grades. f you are still in the process of doing your undergraduate degree, provide your current transcripts. All transcripts should be in English AND your native language. If these records are not originally in English, they must be translated into English and certified by a notary. The transcripts must be sent in a sealed envelope from the university you are attending to the U.S. college to which you want to transfer. There must also be a signature or an official stamp from your undergraduate university where the envelope is sealed. Please note that most U.S. colleges and universities requires TWO (2) sets of official transcripts. Thus, for example, if you are applying to ten (10) schools, you should prepare no fewer than twenty (20) transcripts.
- Graduate transcripts (if available). If you have already received your master’s degree, or if you have taken graduate-level classes but have not acquired your degree, you must provide graduate school transcripts. The guidelines above for undergraduate transcripts also apply to graduate school transcripts.
- Undergraduate or Graduate Diploma or Certificate. Students are able to send English-language copies of their graduation diploma or certificate to schools when applying. However, when applying for a visa and when checking into or registering for school itself, the original documents are necessary. This includes the original certificate or diploma (in your native language) and the original English-language translation certified by a notary.
- Personal Statement (also known as Statement of Purpose). This is an essay. It gives you the opportunity to write about yourself. You should write about yourself and why you think you should be admitted to a given university. You must give information about why you are applying to that specific university, what major you have chosen and why, your future plans and the relevancy of studying at a given U.S. school to these plans. A Statement of Purpose should be no more than 1000 words and no fewer than 500 words. As this is one of the most important parts of the application process, students need to be able to write this in fluent English. We at USIEC have the experience and knowledge to assist you in writing a competent essay that sets you apart from other students and gives you a better chance to be accepted to a U.S. college or university.
- Three letters of recommendation. Almost every university requires applicants to provide up to three letters of recommendation from employers or professors who are familiar with your capabilities in relation to a graduate program.
Some universities have fixed recommendation forms, which students merely fill out. Normally, however, recommendation letters must be written by professors or work supervisors. Each recommendation letter must be signed and sealed by those who write the letters.
- Evidence of Financial Support. This is a form that U.S. schools require you to fill out. On this form, you must provide personal and family information, data detailing who will financially support you while studying in the U.S., and the source of these funds.
- Resume. An excellent resume not only specifies your educational background and working experiences, but also makes you outstanding to the evaluation committees.
- Thesis Abstract or Introduction of the Program Design. Some universities require this, and some do not. However, it is a good idea to provide this unsolicited, as it can increase your Personal Statement’s credibility, which can increase the probability of your being accepted and/or obtaining a scholarship.
- Other required forms. Some schools require further documents, such as a health certificate indicating the state of your health.
- Application Fee. All universities charge an application fee. It varies by school, but is generally between $50 and $80 per application. Check with your desired school for the precise fee amount. Fees should be paid in U.S. dollars. International money orders obtained from a bank in your country are a common form of payment.
- Admission Letter. When you are admitted, you will receive an official admission letter from the university. This admission letter is nothing to do with scholarship.
- I-20. I-20 is a very important document that is issued by the university. It is a supporting document that will help applicants to apply for passport and visa, and finally study in the US.
Usually you need to provide the following documents:
- Admission Letter
- Exit Application Form with stamps from employer and Public Security Bureau.
- Proof of National Training Fee Payment (if applicable).
- Certificate of withdrawal for students not graduated yet.
When you receive the I-20 issued by the university, have a valid passport which won’t expire in the next 6 months. You can apply for the F-1 Visa, M-1 Visa or J-1 Visa through the U.S. Embassy and Consulate.
Besides all the material mentioned above, you still need to provide the followings:
- A complete DS-160 Form. Since March 1, 2010, all the non-immigrant applicants must fill out the on-line DS-160.
- Two inches square (51mm x 51mm) color photograph, less than 6 months old, against a white background, full frontal view.
- Invoice of application fee.
- A passport with at least six months validity beyond the anticipated arrival in the United States.
- Previous passport with American visa, including the expired passport.
- Other supporting documents, such as Certificate of Health Immunization and other kinds of notarization. Every student has to get a physical check-up before go abroad and show the Certificate of Health Immunization to the US Customs.
- Notarization documents. Though is not very often you need the notarized documents in the US, it is better to prepare these important notarization documents: Birth certificate, marriage, no criminal record and work experience.
For further information, please check the US. Embassy and Consulate website or contact our USIEC advisor.
At USIEC, our consultants will provide a preliminary introduction to familiarize you (and/or your parents or family) with the applicable application process, the applicable standardized test(s) you should take, the test dates, and more. Additionally, we will provide an initial assessment of your specific situation and then an overall plan in accordance with and depending on your particular interests, intended course of study, future career path, and more.
Students make good use of winter break to prepare required standardized exams.
Based on your particular educational background and personal traits, our consultants provide the guidelines needed in assisting you in making your overall academic background and experiences more attractive to U.S. schools. By focusing your strengths, experiences, and goals, a more effective and successful application can be generated.
We establish a primary and feasible plan which enhances student’s knowledge and practice at the same time.
Take the necessary standardized test(s). By taking it now, you will have additional time to retake a test on which you didn’t score satisfactorily. The earlier you score the minimum required, the better your chances of being accepted.
You should be finished with all of your standardized testing by this point. At this point is now the core part of the application process. USIEC consultants will devise, based on your information and with your assistance, the best strategy for your particular application process. Students, subsequently, should be participating in extracurricular activities, such as working, doing an internship, and other similar things that will enhance your experience and/or credentials.
USIEC’s professional consultants continue contact with you, helping you decide which schools to apply to and asking the requisite people to write the recommendation letters. USIEC consultants begin to build friendly rapport with targeted schools.
All documents for application should be ready. USIEC advisors will assist students in polishing their Statements of Purpose so they get noticed by admissions representatives. USIEC consultants begin sending application documents to designated schools, while also keeping in touch with the evaluation committees of the respective institutions.
Students maintain their English and/or endeavor to improve their English – particularly their speaking and listening comprehension – in order to be prepared enough for interviews with any interested schools.
Students begin to receive offers from schools, if not before. Students must consider offers before choosing the desired school.
Start application process for visa, if not sooner. USIEC consultants will help prepare you for you visa interview. Sufficient preparation results in students’ having a better chance of receiving a visa.
Reserve your flight ticket and prepare for your new life studying abroad.
Depart for the United States and begin your educational journey.