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Deadlines and College Requirements - Study in USA

The process of applying to colleges after appearing for tests starts off with considering the application deadlines and college requirements. You need to go through the websites of the colleges that you have chosen to join and learn about their application procedure for International Students in their ‘Admissions’ section.


The first thing you should look for in the website is the ‘Application Deadlines’ with regards to International applicants.  Most colleges and universities in the U.S offer two different deadlines for all students, including International students. You will have to decide whether you want to apply by the ‘Early Application Deadline’ or by the ‘Regular Application Deadline’. This decision is very important as it will determine the time by which you will have to arrange documents and complete the application.

Early Application Deadlines

The ‘Early Application Deadline’ precedes the ‘Regular Application Deadline’ and allows students to get decisions regarding their applications much earlier than usual. These early deadlines are generally in the 1st week of November for most U.S colleges and the decision regarding received applications is generally declared by Mid – December.

The basic advantage of these early deadlines is that you will receive a quicker response from the colleges you applied to. So, if you do not manage to get in to the colleges you wished to, you can always apply to other colleges again before the ‘Regular Deadline’. Keep in mind, however, that many colleges do not accept early applications from students who have applied early to another college as well.

Most students use these early deadlines to apply to colleges which are their ‘Top Priority’. As these top priority colleges are most likely to be ones that are very reputed and competitive, the chances of getting in are also quite slim. Applying early to such colleges will help you get a decision regarding your admission form very early. If you manage to get in your dream college, then you need not apply to any other institutions. But if you do not manage to get in, you can always apply to other colleges without missing out on this year’s deadlines as the Regular deadlines will still be valid.

Regular Application Deadlines

If you do not wish to apply early, or have missed out on the early deadline, then you can apply by the ‘Regular Application Deadline’. These regular deadlines are generally in the 1st week of January and the decision regarding received applications is declared by late March.

Maximum students who apply to colleges in the U.S do so by adhering to the regular deadlines. Most colleges do not allow students to submit applications after the end of the regular deadline. These regular deadlines offer students more time to research about colleges, appear for tests and arrange documents as compared to early deadlines.

If you feel that you would need more time to arrange necessary documents and appear for the required exams, then adhering to these regular deadlines is a better and more convenient option. However, you will need to choose your colleges very wisely in the regular deadline as not managing to get through in either of your applied colleges will result in you having to drop a year as you will not be able to apply to most U.S colleges again before the start of the next academic year.

College Requirements

Apart from deciding the deadline according to which you wish to apply, you will also need to learn in detail about the various requirements with regards to International students during the application process. Colleges require a number of documents and certificates during the application process that generally include School Mark sheets (Transcripts), Recommendation Letters, Statement of Purpose (Essays), Test Scores and Supplementary certificates. Your application will only be considered if you submit the application form along with all these ‘requirements’.

You will also need to learn about the application process that applies to International students for that particular college. Under most circumstances, you will be asked to make an online profile that can be used to apply to many colleges. You will have to use that profile to apply to your desired colleges and the payments for the applications would be made online using Credit/Debit cards. The documents would have to be submitted by uploading them online.

However, some colleges do not follow the above procedure and might require applicants to send their applications through mail or even appear for interviews at designated centers. Go through the website of your desired college/s carefully and carefully adhere to the instructions specified for International students.

Creating Profiles

Most U.S colleges require International students to apply online. Go to the website of your desired college and click on the ‘Apply’ link. This will most probably lead you to another website, where you will be asked to create a profile.

This profile will contain your contact information and academic credentials and can be used by you to apply to separate colleges without having to fill your information again and again. All you will need to do is search for the college you want to join on the website and click on the ‘apply’ link.

Another big advantage of this method is that you can ‘save’ your profile and apply to a college later. So if you are awaiting your test results and other documentation, then you fill in all your contact details, save your profile and update it later with the test scores and other documents. Once your profile is complete, all you will need to do is make the payment of the application fee online. Your application will be confirmed once the payment is made.

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