Beginners Page

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Overview of the Application Process

You want to go to USA for higher education, and have no idea about how the process works? This page is for you.

Applying to US Universities is a complex and subjective process. No matter what background or academic record you have, there could be a suitable University for your profile. Getting into any University is not a problem and that should not be your goal. One should try and get admitted to the best possible University suitable for your profile. So the biggest challenge to figure out where to apply. You do not want to apply to Universities below your ability. At the same time if you are too ambitious you will end up with all rejections.

Start early and plan well. Read here the timeline for the process. Applying to US Universities is at least a year and half long process. The planning should begin in the 3rd year of your engineering degree for an MS application.

You need to take (not give!) relevant standardized test. GRE General Test is required for MS and PhD programs, GMAT for MBA programs and SAT for undergraduate programs leading to a BS degree. There are no cutoffs, pass or fail for these tests. The tests are one of many factors that are taken into account for the admission so even if you do badly on the test you have some hope. But the good news is all these tests are easy if you prepare well and do not panic during the tests.

Apart from the new concept of a standardized Tests, the other new terms you will hear about the process are the transcripts, reco, sop, etc. Transcript is a scary word which just means a certified copy of all your marksheets. read here about SOP (Statement of Purpose) and here about Reco (letters of recommendation).


Read the timeline for Fall 2008

How to get most out of

Now you have some idea about the process of Applying to US Universities. The next steps are as follows:
1. Read all the pages on our website. Every page is carefully written and has useful information.
2. Read our blog regularly. We post one or two posts every week and bring you insights and analysis of the application process.
3. Cannot access our website from office? No problem. Enter your email at the top of this page to get content on your email.
4. Still have doubts? Ask a question on our forum. Most questions are replied within 5 to 7 days. If you want your questions answered, follow the simple rules:
- Write a relevant subject (Help me plzzzzzzzz not acceptable)
- Write simple and grammatically correct English
- Show some effort. Do not expect us to invest time for you if you cant do that for yourself.
- Read the forum to make sure your question is not already answered.
- Do not reply to your own thread to bump it up.

What do we expect? is a free service and we have simple expectations:
We expect you to devote time to your own application process and strive to get admitted to a good US University.
We do not tolerate unethical behavior and do not offer help on how to circumnavigate the system. We believe you can be successful by following the rules.
We expect you to follow rules in every step - taking tests, applying for visa or supplying correct information to the Universities.
Help other students in the future - on forum or otherwise.
Spread the word to your friends about
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