How to get into an American university?

After high school, if you want to go to college in the U.S., it is possible with a little preparation. We give you the main lines to follow to integrate an American university and the formalities of travel to accomplish. Forget your ESTA, you need the F1 visa.

How are American universities?

There are nearly 4,900 universities in the United States. American universities are very selective. To attend an American university, you must apply for admission and submit an application. Admission requirements vary from one university to another, but all of them will make sure that you have the appropriate academic and language skills. Of course, the admission requirements will be more difficult for the most renowned universities such as Yale, Harvard, Brown, etc.

To determine your grade level, universities use the GPA (Grade Point Average), which is the conversion of your grade point average to the American educational system. This information is then supplemented by the SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test) which is an entrance test. The SAT is divided into three sections: text analysis, writing, and math. Of course, the higher the score, the better your chances of getting into the American university of your choice.

In order for a non-English speaking student to be admitted to an American university, proof of English language comprehension must be provided. Universities want to be sure of your level of English before they accept you, so they will ask you for the results of a language test. The TOEFL or IELTS are generally the reference English tests.

You will also be asked to write a personal essay in which you describe yourself and convince the university to accept you. The point of the university is to assess who you are (not just as a student), what your life path is, what your extra-curricular activities are, what your ambitions are, etc. It is important that this essay is personal and reflects who you really are in both content and style.

A letter of recommendation is often part of the application package. Ask your professors to write these reference letters for you.

A major factor you should consider when studying in the United States is your financial situation. Tuition fees across the Atlantic are particularly high and vary from one university to another.

There is no question of taking advantage of the Erasmus program to get into an American university and getting a scholarship for your tuition fees can be difficult. U.S. scholarships are rarely awarded to a foreign student.

Of course, you still have the option of taking out a student loan, which is often the solution for many American students. Find out about the various financial aid options available (scholarships based on social criteria, mobility assistance, Rotary Club, etc.) to avoid having to repay a loan that is too heavy.

Which visa should I apply for to enter an American university?

To visit the United States, one question must always be asked: visa or ESTA?

The visa required to study at an American university is the F1 visa. It is intended for students who wish to enroll in an accredited educational institution. The institution can be a public or private secondary school, a high school or university as well as a language school for a language stay, but cannot be an adult education center. The student must be taking classes full-time, i.e. more than 18 hours per week.

To apply for an F1 visa, you must first be admitted to one of the institutions mentioned, in our case an American university. The university then issues the I-20 form.

You will need to request an interview with a consular officer at the U.S. Embassy. During this interview, the consular officer will ask several questions about your reasons for wanting to study in the U.S. and about your secondary education.

The documents to be presented in the file are :

This visa does not give you the right to work during your first year of university, but you can eventually find a job on the university campus under certain conditions. Please note that this job should not be motivated by financial reasons, but rather by obtaining an education or better understanding of American culture.