The following information will help you plan for the college application process. It will provide you information on the dates and the necessary steps involved in completing the process.
Following a schedule will help you make sure that everything is done in time and that no procedures or steps are forgotten.
- 12 Months before beginning your studies in the US:
- Begin your search with possible US colleges or universities through college reference guides and visit college websites.
- Talk with your relatives and friends, who have studied in the US.
- Request for information from 10 to 20 different schools.
- Register and start preparing for the TOEFL and other entrance tests (such as the SAT or GRE).
- 10 Months before:
- Take GRE, TOEFL/IELTS and other entrance tests as required. Try taking the test early, so that it gives you an opportunity to take it once again if you haven’t performed
- 9 Months before:
- Send letters to colleges you have selected requesting applications and information, or obtain this information and necessary forms from their websites
- You should choose: o (a) One or two schools that you really like, but may be too difficult to get into; o (b) Two or three that you also like and which you think will accept you; o
(c) One or two which may not be your favorites, but you are quite sure will accept you.
- Get recommendation letters either from the teachers or professionals in the field whom you have worked with and who can speak specifically about your academic potential and
- If your previous TOEFL, SAT, or GRE scores were not satisfactory, register for the test again.
- 8 Months before:
- Filling of University Application forms.
- Send certified copies of your academic transcripts to each of the schools where you are applying.
- Write the Statement of Purpose (SOP). This is an important part of the application. You should show in your statement how your education so far has created a foundation for your
and how your proposed coursework in the US will help you achieve those goals. You should be as specific as possible about your research interests and past accomplishments.
- Complete your essays and application forms, including the financial aid application forms, using the originals (not the copies). Mail the originals by airmail in time to meet the
- Check with your department office and your school to make sure your recommendations and transcripts have been mailed in time to meet the deadlines.
- 6 Months before:
- Respond promptly to any requests you receive.
- 4-5 Months before:
- You will start hearing decisions from the schools. Contact the admissions office at any school that you do not hear from.
- Accept only one school's offer, and let the other schools know of your decision. Ask the school you have chosen to attend to send you the I-20 form.
- 3 Months before:
- Start your Visa process by filling required forms and attend visa interview.
- Make travel arrangements. Schedule your trip so you arrive at least 15 days prior to your school’s orientation.