US University Undergraduate Education

undergraduate-educationThe U.S.A. has over 2,600 4-year universities can grant degrees of bachelour, master and doctorate and over 3,400 2-year community colleges.

Chinese high school students wish to study undergraduate programmes in the United States should follow the below steps:

Participate in Standardised Tests

There are two standardized tests for the United States undergraduate programmes, one is TOEFL, and the other is the SAT.

The language requirement for U.S. undergraduate programme is relative higher than the graduate application. Undergraduate education needs to learn a lot of courses, students communicate more frequent and more extensive, if they do not have good English ability, it is very difficult to adapt the American life and study. In general, the applicant’s TOEFL score should not less than 600, writing not less than 4.0. Although the applicant’s TOEFL score the higher the better, but score of 620 should be adequate.
SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test), the exmination that all U.S. high school students must take to enter the University, its importance is equivalent to China’s university entrance examination, it is also an important reference for admission to U.S. elite universities and obtaining scholarship. SAT has two parts: SAT I and SAT II. Good schools general require scores of SAT I and II, and no exception for international students. So students apply for U.S. schools must have SAT scores, in order to have same standard for the admission committee, thus increase students’ opportunity of admission. Generally speaking, China’s high school students has SAT score of 1,400 should be ok.

In addition, ETS launched the NEW SAT exam in the March 2005 which is good news for high school students in China because the NEW SAT is simpler than the current SAT. The existing language part of the SAT is similar to the current GRE exam, so candidates need to memorise around 15,000 words, and it is undoubtedly more difficult for Chinese high school students. But the NEW SAT cancel the language part of the vocabulary section, and increase the grammar part which Chinese students are good at. Moreover, NEW SAT adds composition. Although this is not Chinese high school students’ strength, but it only accounts for small portion of scores. The full mark of NEW SAT is 2400, the current SAT is 1600.

Prepare Application Materials

With the TOEFL and SAT scores, applicants only have a fundamental condition for U.S. university admission application and scholarship. In order to complete the application, applicants also need to submit the following materials:

Submit Your High School Grade Point Average (GPA)

Applicants generally need to submit their high school transcripts, must be in English and Chinese, 2 copies for each version and each copy with school’s stamp. The GPA of high school above 80 should be enough. U.S.’s academic score is generally 4 as full mark, Chinese students only need to provide original transcripts issued by the school is ok.
EssayU.S. universities generally require applicants to provide a personal statement, Essay. This material is very important for university admission and scholarships. A general principle to write an essay is to focus on the applicant’s own characteristics, because the American universities hope to understand the applicants’ general background. Therefore, applicants should write about their distinctive characteristics, but the number of words for each essay is strictly control.Letters of RecommendationApplicants generally need to provide three letters of recommendation in English, but some schools require two only. According to the actual situation of Chinese students, they can find their class teacher, grade team leader or school leaders to write the letters. It is best to get the principal’s recommendation. But the 2-3 people must have relationship with the students they recommend.Application Form Provided by the UniversityApplicants need to fill in application forms from different universities according to their entry requirement. The form can be filled out online, and submitted directly. If the application is through the school’s website, credit cards must be prepared because the application fee must be paid online.5, Other Proven MaterialsApplicants also can submit other documents to prove their talent. Especially if the applicant has won prizes at the international level of competition, this will greatly increase the opportunity to be granted admission and scholarship.

Apply for Study Abroad: Do Not Give Up the University Entrance Examination

Students wish to study in the U.S. must not abandon the university entrance examination, not even for the study abroad examination. We suggest university entrance exmination is the first priority, and the overseas study application is the second priority. This may secure students seats in the China’s universities when they fail the overseas schools applications and scholarships. And they can apply for transfer during the undergraduate courses or apply for graduate in the U.S. universities when they complete the undergraduate courses.

High school is the golden age of a person’s life, but also the learning period with very heavy task. So if you have an intention to apply for U.S. undergraduate programmes, there must be a detailed plan, in particular:

  1. Preparation period (from the 1st year of senior high school to the 2nd summer holiday): This stage is to prepare and participate in various standardised examinations. It is best to finish the TOEFL and SAT in the second year, latest the first half of the 3rd year.
  2. Application period (the first half of the 3rd year): prepare and submit all application materials.
  3. Waiting period (the second half of the 3rd year): during the waiting for the offer, maintain contact with schools in the United States.
  4. Visa period: once the the application is admitted, need to apply the visa. However, the visa approval time is usually after the university entrance examination. The visa officer will ask for the examination’s score.