study under graduate in usa
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Here’s a Quick Overview to Study Under Graduate Degree in USA

Lot of parents are now considering to send their son and daughter to study Under Graduate degree in USA. But, there are lot of concerns among parents.

For instance, this dad gives 5 Reasons why I wouldn’t Send my son to Study Undergraduate Degree in USA

This article will provide an overview of studying Bachelors degree in USA, colleges and course work.

  • Admission to Bachelors Degree
  • Requirements for Undergraduate Degree
    • Length of Degree
    • Course Work and Credits
    • Academic Advisor
    • Majors and Minors
  • Types of Bachelors Degree awarded in USA

 Admission to Undergraduate Degree

Colleges and Universities look for the following while evaluating the applications

  • Academics
    • Courses ( High School Transcripts, Advanced Placement, IB, A Level, CLEP )
    • Grades ( High School Transcripts )
    • Test scores ( AP, SAT, ACT, TOEFL or IELTS )
  • Beyond academic Qualities (from Essay and Recommendation Letters )
    • Leadership
    • Community Involvement
    • Enthusiasm
    • Achievement in the athletics, arts and other areas.
    • Diversity in personal background and experience
    • Potential to contribute and give back to the school in the future
  • Availability of Finance to fund the cost of a bachelors degree in the USA

Academic Requirements

The academic requirements for international students is that students must have completed secondary school with a superior average in academic subjects. A certificate of completion that enables the student to be admitted to a university in the home country is necessary. Transfer applicants will have completed college-level coursework amounting to 60-90 semester hours.

 Standardized testing requirements

Standardized testing requirements are also a part of the admissions process for US schools. All freshmen applicants are usually expected to take one of the two most popular high school standardized tests in America, the ACT, and SAT. Both are administered by the Educational Testing Service. Students should take the ACT Assessment and the ACT Writing Test or the SAT Reasoning Test that includes critical reading, mathematics and writing scores.

English Language Proficiency

As the proficiency of English is critical to a student’s success at US colleges, most all schools also require language assessment. Students from non-English speaking countries must choose from one of the two most popular English evaluation tools. Applicants will be expected to submit scores for either the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) or the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) during the admissions process. Schools will have their own criteria for minimum score requirements.  Some colleges and universities also require an institution-based language test for placement purposes.

In addition to Test scores and Academic requirements, submission of official records and transcripts will be necessary. Official academic documents will be needed from secondary schools and from any college or university coursework being transferred. Transcripts must show subjects taken and grades received along with any government certificates earned accompanied by English translations. The aforementioned tests will have a reporting element as part of the registration process.  Test scores can also be requested after the fact if within a certain amount of time. This list should help you know what to expect during the initial part of the admissions process for undergraduate students in the USA.

Degree Requirements for Completion

  • Time to Complete Undergraduate Degree : 3 to 4 Years
  • Required Credits : 120 Credits
    • Breath Courses (Arts, Science, Ethics) : Atleast 60
    • Majors : 30 to 42 Credits
    • Minor : 18 to 24 Credits

Required course and credits will vary based on your choice of colleges and universities, but the credits hours should reflect what to expect when you study bachelors degree in USA as an International student.

If you look at Under Graduate Engineering Degree in India, typically first year of course work typically includes breath course work. For instance,  courses will be like from Civil, Electrical, Mechanical Engineering Fields followed by Physics, Chemistry and English.

Same concept applies to Under Graduate College Degree in USA. But the key difference is number of breath courses. It can take about 2 years to complete the general requirements for Bachelors Degree here in USA. Courses include not only from sciences, but from arts, social studies, natural science, communications, ethics, etc.

Importance of Breath Courses in Under Graduate College

The breadth courses during bachelors degree would help acquire following skills:

  • Communication Skills
  • Critical Thinking
  • Analytical thinking
  • Ability to analyze problems and situations in life and society

Under Graduate Degree prepares students not only to make a living, but also for leading an effective and good life.

Faculty Advisor

  • Students are typically assigned a faculty advisor.
  • Advisor is typically from the intended field of major.

Advisor will assist and work with the student to develop a plan of study that is reflects the students interest – Majors, Minors and breath courses.

Students typically meet with an advisor, spend some time to talk about their interest and career goals.  Then based that advisor will give choice of courses to take and majors and minors to complete.

Why Under Graduate Degree in U.S.A.?

So, what is the primary goal of bachelors degree? Let’s look this from both students and employer’s perspective

  • Student: Degree will prepare them to give necessary training, skills in their area of specialization for entry-level jobs. Plus provides the skills required to further your education
  • Employer:  Colleges have prepared students to face real-life environments at work like problem solving, communication, team-work, etc.

Studying in a foreign country comes with its own set of challenges. When you face and overcome challenges, you become a better person. You learn from diverse cultures. Your problem solving skills will improve.

Types of Bachelor’s Degree

Most bachelor’s degrees that are awarded are titled Bachelor of Arts (BA) or Bachelor of Science (BS ), but there are many other bachelor’s degree titles in use.

Here’s a sample list of Bachelors Degree that are awarded in USA. This is not an exhaustive list, but this should give you an idea about types of Bachelors Degree awarded.

  • Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch.)
  • Bachelor of Arts/Artium Baccalaureus (B.A., A.B.)
  • Bachelor of Business (B.B.) or Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.)
  • Bachelor of Computer Science (B.C.S.)
  • Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice (B.S.C.J.)
  • Bachelor of Divinity (B.D.)
  • Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.)
  • Engineering (B.S.B.E./B.S.B.M.E.)
    • Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering (B.S.Ch.E.)
    • Bachelor of Science in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
    • Bachelor of Science in Chemical and Materials Engineering (B.S.C.M.E.)
    • Bachelor of Civil Engineering (B.C.E.)/Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering
    • Bachelor of Science in Civil and Infrastructure Engineering (B.S.-C.I.E.)
    • Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Engineering (B.S.C.S.E.)
    • Bachelor of Science in Electrical and Computer Engineering (B.S.E.C.E.)
    • Bachelor of Electrical Engineering (B.E.E.)/Bachelor of Science in Electrical
    • Bachelor of Science in Engineering Management (B.S.E.Mgt.)
    • Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering (B.S.A.E.)
    • Bachelor of Software Engineering (B.S.W.E.)/Bachelor of Science in Software
  • Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.)
  • Bachelor of Journalism (B.J.)
  • Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.)
  • Bachelor of Literature (B.Lit.)
  • Bachelor of Music (B.M.)
  • Bachelor of Nursing (B.N.)/Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.)
  • Bachelor of Pharmacy (B.Pharm.)

So, this concludes the overview of studying bachelors degree in USA as an international student.

Why Study BS in USA?

It’s the core set of principles that schools follow to prepare students for life ahead. Depth of breath courses will come in handy in variety of situations in life.

For instance, you might care less to study arts as part of engineering degree. But you have an opportunity to explore several areas.

Overall students are well prepared to handle life, job and career.

Education in America is practical oriented doesn’t encourage rote memorization. Plus, several projects are designed to give exposure to working in teams. And critical projects focus in developing individual skills. You can’t get away by coping home work and assignments. In the end you will become a better person with maturity and independence.

Questions : Studying Under Graduate degree in USA?

  • Do you have any questions about studying Undergraduate degree as in International student?
  • What is preventing you from coming to US for Bachelors degree as opposed to Masters degree?
  • What specific details do you want to know to feel convinced about coming to USA to study B.S. degree?

Post your question, comments and feedback in the comments below.

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  1. I am 32 year old. Because of some business problems I have completed 11th only and I am going to complete my 12th in 2015 march. So if I want to complete my bba bachelor degree in USA. Is it possible after considering my age ? I have earned enough money for completing my education. Please provide me suggestion. And yes I have my own business for 10 years. It’s all my experience. Please help me out.
    Thank you.

  2. I am 32 year old. Because of some business problems I have completed 11th only and I am going to complete my 12th in 2015 march. So if I want to complete my bba bachelor degree in USA. Is it possible after considering my age ? I have earned enough money for completing my education. Please provide me suggestion. And yes I have my own business for 10 years. It’s all my experience. Please help me out.
    Thank you.

  3. I feel the wisest decision would be to complete the bachelors in India(not caring about the ranking of the collage ), get a decent CGPA, and get into a good university for Masters. A person who graduates from IIT and a person who graduates from a low ranked b tech collage stand on the same place when he does MS and gets a job in US. This was my observation from couple of years.

      1. there are cases where local students earn more than IITians in US..It all depends on the individual’s capability. IIT is not the only gate to earn a handsome salary

  4. if we start to compare a B.E. from iit & another indian who completes same course frm a uni. ranking higher than iit in US with same intellect level wont the one frm us will get higher salary for same post? what do you think will be a better option graduating frm iit or fight and graduate frm mit…

  5. Great article! It would be much more helpful if you could give a detailed comparison between Indian BE degree and a US BA/ BS degree. Since the expense is humongous compared to India, a detailed explanation as to whether spending so much would be beneficial or not would give much more clarity.

    1. Ok. Good question. Will answer that in future posts about Bachelors Degree.

      In short – Indian BE from 95% of schools doesn’t stand a chance with quality of education compared to BS.

  6. This is certainly true that more people are now interested to do Bachelors in USA but what bothers them is that they have to pay the expenses for four years and I would also like to know that do Intl. student stand a chance to get a job only with bachelors in current economy??

    1. Yes, bachelors degree student’s have to pay tuition fees and expenses for 4 years. It’s an expensive undertaking for any family. But, with Indian middle class growing rich, many families are sending their kids to study in USA and other countries for bachelors degree.

      1. I would also like to know that do Intl. student stand a chance to get a job only with bachelors in current economy??

        1. Finding a job is 100% depended on the student.

          H-1B lottery is out out hands, but getting the job is 100% individual dependent.

          Essentially this is how I see the situation. Entire 4 years a student spends on BS degree is essentially his preparation to find a job. If 4 years is not enough to find ONE job then what’s the point of getting educated or college degree?

  7. Raghu thanks for this article.
    Can you put some light on BS in USA vs BE/B.Tech in Inida ?
    If you discuss some solicial causes that parent should know that will be great help.

  8. The Subject of your email was ‘Why Study Bachelors Degree in USA?’ – I could not find the answer neither your email nor in this article. Am I missing something here?

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