It’s been a while since we have answered some of questions related to graduate degree programs and college admission.

Here’s an interesting question about the duration of study for a master’s degree program in the U.S.

Normally, international students tend to assume that both the US and UK education systems are similar and they can complete all the courses in 1 year for MS and MBA. That’s simply not true.

Alok Asks:  After gaining some work experience in India, (2-3) years in some reputable MNCs (Wipro, TCS, Infy, etc.), are there courses in MS (Computer Science) which can be completed in a year like in the UK? How much work experience matters in obtaining a job or summer internships after earning a master’s degree?

Master’s Degree in 1 Year in US?

First of all we have to edit your question to post it without errors in them. If you look at most of the comments, they’re written with lots of spelling mistakes and slang words.

If your write comments like how you write emails to professors, you will likely not get any reply much more an admission. To effectively ensure replies from professors, read how not to write an email.

Yes, it’s possible to complete a master’s program within the span of only 1 year. Typically, U.S. universities require students to complete 30 to 36 credit hours to get a master’s degree.

1 course is equivalent to 3 credit hours (usually). It varies between universities.

Some schools have Thesis option instead of course work. To complete a master’s degree in 1 year, you will have to take more courses than a typical student will register in a semester.

But, you cannot complete MBA in 1 year in the U.S. An MBA program in the U.S. is designed for 2 to 2.5 years.

Regular full time students need to take:

  1. 9 Credits in Fall 2009
  2. 9 Credits in Spring 2010
  3. 6 Credits in Summer 2010 (Optional) and
  4. 9 Credits in Fall 2010 and graduate.

But to complete an entire MS program in just 1 year, you will have to take

  1. 12 Credits in Fall 2009
  2. 12 Credits in Spring 2010 and
  3. 9 Credits in Summer 2010.

The U.S. education system is different from that of U.K. It’s not possible to do an apple to apple comparison. Completing an MS within 1 year is possible, but it will be very hectic.

Trying to get and maintain a 4.0 GPA will be a very tough feat.

Work Experience and Internship

Having some prior work experience will definitely help, but it’s not mandatory. If you are thinking to postpone your master’s program just for the sake of getting work experience, it’s a wrong decision.

However, if you are already working and is planning to study in the U.S. after 1 or 2 years, then there is nothing else that you can do now. Use that experience to get a job after earning a master’s degree.

Students can always work as an intern for 1 or 2 semesters to get the work experience.

Majority of graduate students get hired as full time employees after completing an internship. But it takes lot of effort to find internship.

You must start building your professional network as soon as you start your coursework. Here’s a guide on how to build your network using LinkedIn.


  1. Urbashi on January 15, 2017 at 4:08 AM


    I have done 1 year Master’s in IT in UK, London and now I want to apply USA for PHD. And my question is can I apply PHD program with my 1 year of Master in IT course?
    If yes then what is the criteria and requirements?

  2. Akshita on October 2, 2016 at 2:42 AM

    I am looking for 1 year MS stem courses in USA preferably in Spring 2017.
    Can you suggest me some course.

  3. rosey on July 30, 2014 at 4:46 PM

    Did anyone else catch the grammatical error written in the sentence that was trying to correct others on their poor grammar? I hope this was an accident.

    • Jennifer on July 9, 2017 at 12:31 AM

      I caught it.

  4. maninid on May 13, 2013 at 1:42 PM

    Is it possible to go for a 1 year masters program in USA after having my ME(Master In Engineering) in Electronics & Telecommunication? I am asking this question because I am about to complete my Master’s thesis in coming July. I already have a Masters degree from India. I am here on H-4 visa. So it is hard to find jobs here. I have completed my thesis and is there any point going for 2 years masters if you already have one. My thesis is in Image processing. and I want to opt for the same field. Or else is there any way to do 2 years master in less span ? does the fee structure vary for these two programs ?


  5. vinitha on April 1, 2013 at 6:45 AM


    My GRE scores verbal:153 Quant 158 , AWA:3.5 and TOEFL:87.
    I am a BE in Computer Science with 79% with 5.5 yrs work exp. Have worked with Accenture and currently in Infosys. Base SAS ,SQl , Accenture Application Outsourcing certified resource.

    Provide me the list of colleges for MS in computer science matching my profile. Please note that I am aimning at scholarships and low cost fee universities.

    Also is it possible to do finish Masters in an Year? Which universities offer them?



  6. Maria on January 15, 2013 at 5:38 AM

    How are the credits divided for a summer term for doing MS in Computer Science when compared to the fall/spring term

  7. mahesh on August 8, 2012 at 9:22 AM

    I am in my 5th year of dual degree course( + in 5 yrs) in computer science and engineering from IIT kharagpur.I want to pursue MS in computer science in USA and want to complete it in 1 year by taking courses in fall,spring,summer as u said.

    But do all universities allow this???
    if not then which universities allow of top 30 universities in USA for MS in computer science???

    please help me out in this regard,i am taking my GRE next week so want to finalize some universities before that.

    thanks in advance

  8. anita on December 19, 2011 at 9:35 AM

    hi..I am doing my final year B.E computer science.Got placed in a well reputed IT company.I wish to do M.S.As i don’t want to burden my parents I wish to learn after working for two years.Is there any benefit in this.Is it possible to learn.
    And minimum how much score should I get in GRE to get into TOP 10 universities.Please say the score out of how much..Guide Me..
    Thanks in Advance..

  9. Akshat Ratanpal on June 21, 2011 at 12:33 AM

    So according to you i should choose royal holloway over surrey. But my only concern is, that i will most probably be coming back to India to work. So when applying for a job in the field, wouldn’t a HR look for the university which is higher ranked over all than a university which is good in my chosen field?. This doubt has been plaguing me ever since i chose surrey.

    • AB on June 21, 2011 at 8:55 PM

      Please don’t get me wrong,I am not suggesting you to choose anything over another. That’s purely personal decision based on each person’s specific criteria.I was just wondering in which ranking you’ve seen UoS better that RHUL.
      And I am a bit confused now with your questions.Previously you’ve asked PhD duration in US after MS in UK,so (as well as the topic and blog is all about) it meant you’re willing to do a PhD after MS.Now you’re looking for HR options.

      To tell you frankly Indian HRs won’t mind your MS degree that much,rather they would look for certifications and work experiences and overall,technical knowledge. 🙂

      • Akshat Ratanpal on June 22, 2011 at 5:44 AM

        I had checked few british rankings and most of them had surrey over royal holloway in overall ranking. In international rankings i checked with QS world and it had surrey up by 50 ranks over royal holloway. My initial plan was to go to US for masters but because of some financial issues i could not go with my US plan. The reason I want to do a masters in this field, coz i think it will be a stepping stone towards a Ph.D as my graduate academic record wasn’t excellent to get a place in the direct Ph.D programme . And i don’t just want to go to US for the sake of it, I want to get into a top institute for a top degree. So this is one way to improve my academic record. Secondly, I plan to come back to India to work for a while to get that required work experience as I have the desired certifications( CEH,CHFI,CCNA) plus i am good with C,C++,Java,Python and SQL. Also, working might help me repay part of my education loan before i go for my Ph.D.

  10. Akshat Ratanpal on June 20, 2011 at 5:40 AM

    I will be going for my masters in security technologies and applications at university of surrey in UK. I got an offer from RHUL too for MSc in information security, but i opted for surrey as it is ranked higher. But my question to you is, what will be the duration of Ph.D inUS after i have done my masters from UK.Also, can you suggest me a link to site which is up to date on researches taking place in the field of information security.

    • AB on June 20, 2011 at 4:15 PM

      Hi Akshat,
      I wonder in which ranking you’ve got Uni.of Surrey better than Royal Holloway.May be it’s overall ranking.There is an example where a person changed to RHUL after attending 1 week of class in Security Technologies from Surrey. RHUL isg group is the pioneer in the field and best in MSc studies in EU for the said field.
      Anyways,personal choice varies.For neutrals,I give 2 links to compare offered modules.
      For UoS
      For RHUL

      And for your question,it will take 4.5 years to complete PhD in IS rather 5.5 years if you’ve a MS degree.There is no single site for up-to-date research knowledge,you’ve to browse various university website.For starters,RHUL,Cambridge in UK, Purdue/Georgia Tech University/Syracuse/John Hopkins/ New York Polytechnic university in USA.

  11. Anuja Shah on January 31, 2011 at 10:03 PM

    I have heard from a friend of mine that we can still do complete the masters course in one year. There are like 3 classes on the same topic being conducted all through the day. By not working part time and studying for 6 subjects in one semester with three in the morning and the other three in the evening we can finish up the course within an year and start earning earlier than a typical student and pay up the loans faster. How true is this? I am confused whether to take up all the subjects right now or to decide after reaching the university.

  12. prabha on November 19, 2010 at 5:34 AM

    can i apply for PhD in us after completing one year ms degree …

    is one year ms degree beneficial

    • AZ on November 19, 2010 at 9:27 AM

      Yes sure you can.But understand the fact that if your MS is from UK,then I hope it is a renowned university like for example Oxbridge,UCL,ICL,KCL,RHUL,QMUL,Southampton,Manchester etc

  13. karthick on October 24, 2010 at 11:38 PM

    whether it possible to complete ms in usa

  14. Pankhuri on August 12, 2010 at 1:27 AM

    I am a 5 yr dual degree (B.Tech. with M.Tech.) graduate from IIT (Electronics and Communication), working with a software field since last 1 yr and GRE (800QA + 590VA). GPA 7.64, class rank 2/20. Have good projects/internships and publication.

    My aim is to apply for good schools for MS or Ph.D. in VLSI field. My current masters is in Wireless Communication.

    What are the best universities in US to apply for Ph.D.?

    Are there any universtities that will give weightage to my masters so that I can complete Ph.D. in lesser time, maybe 3-4 yrs?

    Also do I stand good chance to apply in EPFL, Swiss?

    Your guidance would be very valuable for me. Thanks!

  15. vaidyanathan on January 7, 2010 at 8:53 AM

    Hi. Please evaluate my profile and let me know the possibilities of getting admit in GATECH , illinois inst of tech, arizona state univ and NCSU.

    Gre: 900 , TOEFL: 79

    Having 10 international publication including IEEE , ICNBC, completed 5 projects , worked as part time teaching faculty for a US based company and trained 150 studetns every semester in field of Image processing, nanotechnology, soft skills and personality development. MS fall 2010 in aerospace engineering (applied in above 4 colleges). have 71% with 7 history of arrears (no standing).

  16. Subhajit on December 26, 2009 at 9:43 AM

    Also I have a good skill in computer languages like SQL, and

    C# , I also have a good skill in sql server too.

  17. Subhajit on December 26, 2009 at 9:41 AM

    Dear Sir,

    I'm in 4th Year doing B-Tech in IT under WBUT university.

    Till now my average score in B-Tech is 70%. And my average score in Board examination is 56%. I'm willing to give my GRE examination in the upcomming March. Now if I make a score of 1200 in GRE will I be able to persue the MS degree in US with scholarship?

    Please do reply me as soon as possible.

  18. Jaya on December 18, 2009 at 10:34 AM

    Hi !!

    My brother has a GRE score of 1080/1600 and having experience for 3 years in IT. Can you please suggest any suitable State universities with good funding for MS in computer science.

    Thanks in advance,


  19. Anindya Biswas on December 18, 2009 at 8:31 AM

    I will be completing MS in Computer Network & Security from Kingston University ,Surrey ,UK in Jan 2010. After having 1 or 2 years of job in UK with Post study work scheme I want to study PhD from USA.Do US universities accept 1 year MS degree for entering their PhD program?


    • HSB on December 18, 2009 at 1:45 PM

      @Aninday – Yes, that do accept. Infact you can do PhD directly after completing your Bachelors.

      • sachin on May 24, 2010 at 3:57 AM

        how much did u spend to do ur ms???

  20. Banwari on May 30, 2009 at 8:29 AM

    whats applying times for applying in US universities for MS in Biotechnology.

  21. thet mon aye on May 12, 2009 at 12:19 AM

    Dear Sir,

    I would like to know if I can earn a master degree in USA with BSC Computer Science in UK? and how long will it take?

    I am an international student from Myanmar and I am now planning to go for undergraduate studies.

    I have offers from UCL to study undergraduate studies MEng Computer Science but I heard that US don't recognise UK degrees.

    So, I am now in paradox.

    Thank you very much and please reply me.

    Have a good day.

    • Anindya on December 22, 2009 at 1:42 PM

      According to the post above urs,it is accepted ..3yr UK bachelor degree for entering into 2 yr US MS degrees.

      • HSB on December 22, 2009 at 3:20 PM

        Not all Universities accept 3 years Bachelors course in US. If you want to get into good university, then you will need 16 years of education.

  22. Avinash Reddy on March 14, 2009 at 10:27 AM

    Hi! I heard a news I don’t know whether its a rumor or exact news from Obama. The news is that US govt is issuing F1 visa’s for just 2 years? and students are not supposed to work off campus.. and they need to stay in the campus during their course. After the course the students have to return back?

    I know this is weird to hear this sort of news…. But its screwing up….. Is that true?

  23. Alok Prabhat on March 13, 2009 at 1:13 AM

    thanks for the valuable information..and sorry for the slang English… it would not be repeated….

  24. Johanne on March 12, 2009 at 12:22 AM

    Very informative reply.

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