Students often wait until they have completed their undergraduate degree before going abroad to study. While this reasoning seems to work well for many destinations, you may have to adapt your curriculum a little more if you want to study in the US after a Bachelor’s degree.
Indeed, the American Bachelor’s Degree and Master’s Degree do not have the same structure, and American students validate their undergraduate degree after 4 years of study!
Going to the USA after obtaining your License
The first American university cycle takes place over 4 years and is called the “Undergraduate” cycle. It is therefore different from the French undergraduate program in that it is completed in 3 years. Thus, when you obtain your Bachelor’s degree, it can be difficult to obtain an equivalence in order to enter directly into a Master’s Degree.
How can I continue my studies in the United States after my Bachelor’s degree under its conditions?
It is possible for you to join a Bachelor’s Degree program in the 4th year to validate an American degree, or you can turn to a year of a French Master’s Degree before going abroad.
Once you have obtained your Master’s Degree, you can apply for a Master’s Degree in one year instead of two years. You will not normally lose a year of study.
For students wishing to leave directly after their Bachelor’s degree, some university placement agencies have negotiated agreements with American institutions to obtain an equivalence in order to enter a Master’s Degree.
Another solution is to turn to international exchange programs, which sometimes provide equivalencies that are difficult to validate otherwise. The major business and engineering schools also offer numerous partnerships with the United States.
When to apply to universities in the United States?
The U.S. academic year is generally divided into two semesters, the summer and winter semesters. It is normally not possible to join a program during the year, except for academic exchanges. You will therefore have to apply for the September academic year, taking into account a preparation period of about 9 to 12 months!
It is therefore necessary to start the application process in October of the previous year, while you are still following your previous course of study. The collection of information, the choice of your training, of your establishment, the constitution and the sending of your file can take an important time, whereas the obtaining of certain documents sometimes implies delays of a few weeks.
How to apply for a Master’s degree in American universities
As previously mentioned, the registration process takes some time. It is therefore necessary to start preparing your application at least 9 to 12 months in advance. For some courses, such as MBAs, almost 18 months is recommended to prepare well.
Universities today offer all different solutions to register online for their courses via their Internet portal. Most of the time, you can download the registration form, or even complete your entire registration online, via a dedicated personal space.
The different steps and documents required are clearly displayed, and you will have to send your complete file before the deadline.
If you wish, specialized agencies offer their advice to make your application in the best conditions. Thanks to its experience in the world of American higher education, the agency will allow you to put all the chances on your side to be admitted, while benefiting from their network of American partner universities.
Requirements to apply to American universities
- A Master’s level diploma to apply for a Postgraduate degree, or a Bachelor’s degree if you wish to do a fourth year within a Bachelor’s Degree.
- The results obtained during your last university education, translated by a sworn translator. It may be necessary to transfer them in the GPA format specific to the American university system.
- Some programs, such as MBAs, require additional tests such as the GMAT and GRE, as well as an official attestation from all the institutions you joined during your graduate studies. You will need to contact each of them so that they can send this certificate directly to the universities you are applying to.
- A language level test. In order to certify your level of English, you must take the TOEFL or IELTS test.
- A C.V. retracing all your professional experiences. This is especially valid if you are applying to post-experience MBA-type programs as your past experiences are decisive in the admission decision.
- At least two letters of recommendation written in English from your professors and former employers.
- A cover letter stating your reasons for joining this institution, this training and how it will fit into your professional career path afterwards. The cover letter, “Personal essay” or “Statement” is of paramount importance in the decision of the juries, do not hesitate to take care of it!
- A copy of your passport valid for more than a year from the date of entry, as well as passport photos.