The university application process differs from country to country and there is no perfect formula to gain admission to the desired university. However, there are some general rules to follow and tips that can help you gain admission.
Choose your program
Decide where you want to study abroad and what level and area of study you are interested in and have the educational background to qualify. Consider your career prospects and then decide on a major.
Choose a program that aligns with your goals, and try to choose a university that ranks highly, has a great reputation in your desired discipline, or meets other criteria that are important to you.
Read the requirements and deadlines carefully
The first step in applying to a school abroad is to check the requirements. If the information on the website is confusing to you or insufficient, ask the schools for more information.
If you are not sure if your nationality is accepted for student visas in the country, you can also try visiting official government websites and study councils. It is important to pay attention to the deadlines so as not to miss the entrance exam or entrance test deadlines.
Write a motivation letter
Applying for certain areas of study or schools requires a letter of motivation. The motivation letter or cover letter must show your ability to perform well in the institution and must include an evaluation of your skills and achievements.
So express your interest in studying at university in a clear and structured motivation letter and remember to use clear English when writing the letter.
Ask for a letter of recommendation
Admission to the university or program sometimes requires one or more letters of recommendation from a professor. Don’t be afraid to ask for a letter of recommendation from professors with whom you’ve had a good relationship.
Please note that letters of recommendation take time for instructors to write and letters from multiple students may be requested. Ask them as soon as possible to make sure they have time to write a detailed and compelling recommendation.
Prepare for the TOEFL or IELTS test
If your first language is not English and you want to study abroad, you may need to take an English test. When planning your study abroad program and booking your test, consider test preparation time.
Depending on your English language proficiency and your ability to use the English language, as well as the score required by the university, you will need time to study and prepare for the exam.
Also, don’t forget to schedule your test at least a month in advance, as each test center offers tests a maximum of four times a month, depending on local demand. If you apply late, it may be full.
Use online application platforms
Nowadays, more schools tend to use an online application platform to make it easier for students to enroll in programs. Most schools and students prefer to submit documents electronically rather than by mail, as it is faster and usually cheaper or free.
Register for the entrance exam
Some countries like India and certain colleges like medical colleges have entrance exams that test your knowledge of natural sciences and skills related to subjects like languages or mathematics.
Check the date and location of the exam, as the exam usually takes place one or two months before the opening day of the school. You will need to register for the test in advance and, if necessary, make a plan for your trip abroad.
Also, make sure you know what to expect on test day. If possible, prepare yourself by taking a look at a sample proof.
Be confident for the interview
The last step in the application process may be an intake interview. Some schools like the University of Oxford and certain elite programs conduct interviews to find out which candidates are most qualified to enter the school.
The interview usually begins with why you want to study at this school or program, your education, and your plans for the future. Practice for the interview, be confident, and don’t let the formal setting stress you out. Stay calm and don’t speak too fast or too slow.
Schedule your visa consultation
To be eligible for a student visa, your school and program must be accredited by the government of the country in which they are located. In most cases, after receiving an acceptance letter and being admitted to the school, it is time to apply for a student visa.
Depending on country regulations and the number of applicants, applying for a student visa can be a long and complicated process. Therefore, it is best to apply for your student visa and schedule your appointment or interview as soon as possible.
The documents needed to apply for a student visa are usually a bank statement, an application form, your university application payment receipt, tuition, your passport, medical information, and your background.
You will have to keep in mind that applying to schools abroad will incur costs related to the school entrance exam, the translation of documents, the reservation for the English exam, tuition fees, and visa application fees.
Don’t let this put you off, as many students study internationally on a budget, but do make a plan for your likely costs so you can budget accordingly.