Master of Arts in Education student Mohsen Aladwani shares an international perspective on the admissions process

April 08, 2015

Winter scene

Attending grad school in the U.S. is a dream for many students. But getting there can seem daunting. What documents do you need? How do you choose a school? What does the application entail?

Like many things in life, the key is preparation. Before you begin applying to schools, it’s important to understand the admissions process. There are three key steps every student needs to know: how to prepare yourself; how to select the right university and program for you; and, finally, how to complete your application.

Preparing at home

The first part of the process starts at home. If you live in a non-English speaking country, you need to translate your documents – transcripts, diplomas, certificates, recommendation letters – to English. Also, you may need to have your original transcript evaluated by a service like WES. Most importantly, you need to apply for an F-1 student visa to study in America.

Deciding on the right school

Take the time to choose a university and program that matches your interests. You’ll want to learn a lot about a school to make a good choice. Consider many aspects, like what the institution offers and where it’s located. Research the faculty and ask yourself, do they share my interests? Read up on course offerings. And don’t forget to evaluate the surrounding community, paying attention to factors like safety, cost of living, weather, and public transportation.

Completing the application

Lastly, complete the application. Requirements change at every school, check each university’s website for details. At Regis University, you’ll need to submit the following:

  • Visa
  • Credit evaluation/bachelor’s degree
  • English proficiency
  • Application fee
  • Resume
  • Admissions essay

Once you finish your application and send the required documents to the admissions office, there’s a waiting period while the department makes a decision. Try to be patient; this takes time. Whenever possible, apply early so you don’t miss deadlines.

Studying in America is a great opportunity for international students to improve their education, expand their experiences and learn new cultures. Applying to college as an international student takes time and patience, but by following these steps, you’ll be better prepared. Good luck!