The American Educational System

Studying in United States Universities is very flexible in terms of admissions. Actually, many universities offer four sessions:

  1. – Fall session.
  2. – Winter session.
  3. – Spring session.
  4. – Summer session.


English Proficiency Test score like IELTS, TOEFL etc is required to study in English speaking country. However, Most U.S. colleges and universities offer English as a Second Language (ESL) classes in which you may be required to enroll upon beginning your study at a school. Conditional or provisional admission may be offered to you if your academic or professional qualifications are very good but your English needs additional improvement. If you are granted conditional admission, you may be required to complete English language courses or retake standardized language proficiency tests before being allowed to enroll in certain courses. So NO TOEFL required.

The U.S education system includes “Universities”, “Colleges” and “Institutes”.

For diplomas, there are “Associate Degree” (AA/AS/AAS), Bachelor degree (BA/BS), Master degree (MA/MS), and Doctorate degree (PhD).

Undergraduate studies:

Associate Degree

Associate degrees are awarded by a community, junior or technical college indicating that you have completed a program of study with a broad base in general education and a concentration in a specific area. To get this degree, you must earn 60 semester credit hours, which typically takes about two years.

This degree is designed to prepare students to transfer into a 4-year college or university to get a bachelor degree.

Bachelor Degree

The undergraduate bachelor’s degree usually  takes four years to complete and is comprised of 120-128 semester credit hours (60 of which may be transferred from an associate degree at a community college)

The four years spent as an undergraduate at a university are known as the freshman, sophomore, junior and senior years. The curriculum of many undergraduate programs is based on a “liberal arts” philosophy in which students are required to study courses from a range of subjects to form a broad educational foundation. These general education courses include study in English composition, social sciences, humanities, history, mathematics and natural or physical sciences.

Graduate studies:

Master Degree

To earn a master’s degree, students spend between two and three years studying, though it is possible to earn some degrees in just one year. Master degree requires that you complete six to eight advanced courses, in addition to an intensive study project and/or a thesis. Most graduate programs offer internships (OPT optional practical training), which provide a chance to work in your specific field of study with the main purpose of gaining knowledge and experience.

Doctorate Degree (Ph.D)

The doctoral degree, or Ph.D., is the highest academic credential that a student can earn in the U.S. The average length of studies is between four to six years following the reception of the master’s degree.