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Hello Everyone,

Selecting a University has always been a big task for International Students. The Students have to consider lots of factors before deciding which University they will go. Most of the Students know how to select a University but still I am going to discuss in detail regarding that, as its one of the important steps towards Studying MS in USA. Below here are the various key points you need to look at before deciding the University that you will be joining.

Key Points To Consider In Selecting The University: –

  • Fees for the Entire MS Program.
  • Living Expenses that you are going to Incur.
  • Financial Aid Given By The University.
  • Entire Length of your Course.
  • Whether there is an option for Thesis/Non-Thesis.
  • Population of Students from Abroad.
  • Current Students Survey regarding the University.
  • General Climate of that City/State.
  • What’s the Crime Rate around the Area?
  • Job Opportunities after MS.
  • Is It within your Budget?

1. Fees for the Entire Program: –

The Fees for the Entire Program differs from One University to Another. You need to check each Universities website to get to know about the Entire Fees. Generally Private Universities Fees are higher than Public Universities. There are some reductions that may be done if you get Scholarships/TA/RA. But the Reductions will be decided by the University itself. You will find all the Information in Universities Website.

2. Living Expenses that you are going to Incur: –

The Living Expenses will depend on which city you live in. For Example if you get NYU Polytechnic which it is Brooklyn, New York the Living Expenses are higher than other States. So you need to decide the University based on the Expenses too. This is a tough decision to make, A good University but high cost of living or Medium University with affordable cost of living. You can find the Expenses that you may incur in the University Website Itself.

3. Financial Aid Given By The University: –

If you get a Scholarship from the University itself then that’s great. But if not check if the University have Teaching Assistant or Research Assistant jobs available. Getting a TA or an RA will help you in managing your monthly expenses. Also check other Part-Time Jobs that are available in the University. Check their Website, they will have all the details regarding RA/TA and even regarding Part-Time Jobs they are offering. Also get in contact with the seniors regarding these Queries.

4. Entire Length of your Course: –

Check the Length of the Course that you are willing to attend. Some of the Masters Program are quite lengthy, so you need to check this information before applying. Take an Example if you are switching from Electronics to MS in Computer Science, then the University will ask you to take pre-requisite courses. Generally you will be asked to take courses from Under graduation before starting of with your Masters.

5. Whether there is an option for Thesis/Non-Thesis: –

Thesis means that you will be given a problem at the start of the semester and you will be told to find the appropriate solution for it. It is like Research. If you are interested in PhD then take Thesis option. It will be a good choice. Non-Thesis is similar to our under Graduation. You will need to complete the syllabus that will be given to you. You need to check the details regarding this in the Website.

6. Population of Students from Abroad : –

Always check the population of International Students in the University. It is common phenomenon that you will feel a little relaxed if you have students from your own country studying in the University. So for Example, for Indians there are Indian Association that is formed in each University. They have a Website dedicated for this. You can see the website and get in touch with them regarding any doubts about that University.

7. Current Students Survey regarding the University: –

Generally Universities carry out a Survey from the International Students in order to rate their University by asking them various questions. You can find that in their official website. Also it’s a good idea to communicate with students already studying the course to get a better idea on how they rate the University

8. General Climate of that City/State: –

Here you will have to choose a University which has a good Ranking and also the Climate in that region is good. Say if you choose Universities from the North region, be prepared for very colder climates. So you need to analyse which climate soothes you and then choose the University.

9.  What’s the Crime Rate around the Area: –

This is a important factor to be taken into consideration while choosing a University. You need to see the Crime Rate in the area around the University. Their are lots of websites which offer a complete overview of crime rates around the University. It’s good to go over it to have a better understanding of where exactly are you going to

10. Job Opportunities after MS: –

This is the Important Factor that you need to look at if you are willing to settle down in USA. The best people who can help you to know whether there are good job opportunities are the seniors who study in that University. Contact the seniors before you apply and then go for the University where job opportunities are greater. At this moment job opportunities in California and East Coast. So just check this and then apply.

11. Is It within your Budget: –

At last after checking all the parameters above the final parameter will be that “Is it within your budget?” So you need to take all the factors mentioned above and also go for the University that is within your Budget. It’s really a tough call to make. But you have to decide and apply for the University which almost satisfies all the Conditions.

So to Conclude, Try to get into a University that satisfies all the points, but make sure it satisfies the points that are primary to you.

All The Best.

Factors To Consider While Selecting A University

46 thoughts on “Factors To Consider While Selecting A University

  • September 17, 2013 at 10:00 am

    My GRE score is 321, expect Toefl >100, CGPA 6.5 but expect =7.0 after completing 5 yr dual with M.Sc(Math), BE(Hons) E &I from BITS Pilani, India. I am interested in Supply Chain Management MS or MBA programme. Kindly advise me about th universities where I may be admitted.

    • September 18, 2013 at 4:21 am

      Have you shortlisted the Univs for your profile? If you have then you can share it so that I can help you with the same.

      • October 25, 2014 at 2:10 am

        i’m having a very very low gpa 6.0 in my btech ece
        but i was intrested in research&developments in electronics
        i donno which university will be good for me
        and how to get into it.
        previously i’m having thought of getting iit’s but gpa drastically kicked out of it.
        present i was in final year btech
        please please please help me to get out from this :'((((

  • September 26, 2013 at 6:19 am

    My gre score 297 Q-149 V-148 AWA-3.0
    acads BTech in I.T -7.41 still in final year
    I am interested for MS in US
    I have shortlisted some universities:
    University of Southern California
    University of Texas,Arlington
    University of Texas, Dallas.
    Nothern eastern University
    SUNY Binghamton
    University of connecticut
    university of texas-austin
    florida institute of technology
    university of texas-dallas
    texas tech university
    university of michigan-ann harbor

    Please do suggest some more universities in US …thanks in advance!

  • September 27, 2013 at 4:13 pm

    Hi, i have cmpltd my b.pharmacy ag-65% got 7backlogs with this am i elgble to do ms(pharmaceutics,pharmacology) r diploma (food&science) in canada plz sugest me thanks in advance

  • October 1, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    my gre score 302..and my awaa is 3…toefl xpecting 95-105…………..cgpa-6.5…………..civil engineering from nit,nagpur………………..i am interested in construction management.So please suggest me some good universities for fall 2014 with scholarship (if possible) with possibility of placements after my MS

    • October 8, 2013 at 7:38 am

      There are very few Univs that provide MS in construction management. ARe you also interested in Ms in Civil.

  • October 10, 2013 at 8:57 am

    My Profie
    Xth – 86 %
    XIIth – 89%
    BE EEE – 74% No Back Logs -(2011 passed out)
    GRE – 311 V-150 M-161
    TOEFL – 101

    Work Ex – 2.5 yr in Cognizant
    LOR – 2 from professors and 1 from my manager.

    2.Arizona State University
    3.North Carolina State University
    4.University of south California
    5.University of Illinois at Chicago
    6.North eastern university, Boston
    7.University of Texas at Arlington
    8.University of Texas,Dallas
    9.University of California – Davis
    10.University of California – Irvine
    11.Rutgers State University
    12.Indiana University at Bloomington

    Can you evaluate my profile and categorize the univs into ambi,mod and safe.?

    Also,Suggest me any better universities other than the ones in the list matching my profile.

  • October 20, 2013 at 9:03 am

    my gre score is 286(quant=150,verbal=136),
    toefl in december
    b.tech aggregate=68%(aeronautical)
    applying for m.s aerospace
    plzz help me in shorlisting the good universities with gud scholarshps n placements..thank u.

  • October 24, 2013 at 8:38 am

    My Profie :
    Xth – 92 %
    XIIth – 97.7%
    B.Tech ECE – 91% (2012 passed out)
    GRE – 301 V-143 Q-158
    TOEFL – 98
    Work Ex – 2 yr in Software
    LOR – 3 from Associate Deans

    Aiming for MS in VlSI or Computer networks..

    1.Arizona State University, Tempe
    2.University of Texas,Dallas
    3.University of Florida, Gainsville
    4.State University of Newyork (SUNY), Stony brook
    5.University of Colorado, Boulder
    6.University of Minnesota – Twincities
    7.University of North Carolina, Charlotte

    Can you please evaluate the university selection and also suggest any other good universities with average fee?
    Thanks in advance.

      • December 7, 2013 at 8:15 am

        R u kidding? UNCC ambitious? It gives admit to people even with 290 GRE score!

  • October 30, 2013 at 7:08 am

    Hello, here’s my profile.

    GRE 310 (V 150 Q 160 AWA 4.5) TOEFL 104 ( S 26 W 28 L 24 R 26) GPA 7.2
    I’m looking to do MS in VLSI or Embedded Systems and these are the universities that I’ve already applied to
    UT Arlington – received admit for Fall 14
    SUNY Stony Brook – Hopeful of an admit
    SUNY Buffalo
    UC Davis – Hoepful of an Admit

    Here’s my problem. Arlington has a good Embedded/VLSI course and since it’s Texas, my job opportunities are great but UTA is ranked low and my friends have told me that with my profile, I can get a better university.
    UC Davis is my ideal admit as it has great coursework AND job opportunities (California). Problem arises when I don’t get UC Davis but I get Stony Brook. Now, Stony has a brilliant coursework but since it’s New York, my seniors there told me that there’s zero placement opportunities for EE guys. I do not know what to do now. I will have to compromise on job opportunities if i choose Stony and i’ll have to compromise on ranking and brand if I choose UTA. kKindly give me a solution to this problem.

  • November 11, 2013 at 11:59 am

    Hi, can you please send your email id , I would like to talk in person about my profile. In general i have
    GRE – 312
    Toefl yet to take – expecting around 100
    Gpa – 6.8 /10
    3 LOR (from renowed faculty and a good sop)
    Have 3 research projects, publication of 2 papers in progress(Not published yet) and lots of course projects.

    My univ list is

    USC (Unic of Souther California)
    ASU (Arizona state Univ)
    USCD (UC , san diego)
    Georgia Tech – Applying because one of my recommendation is from a visiting faculty from this college
    UC Santa Barbra

    British Columbia
    Simon Fraser

    Can you please suggest some very good safe university for masters in computer sciences – US or canada

  • November 11, 2013 at 12:02 pm

    Forgot to mention – Looking for ms in computer sciences and gre – 162 – quant – 150 verbal

  • November 18, 2013 at 4:40 pm

    i wish if u could evalute my profile
    i m planning to a masters in embedded systems/computer architecture
    my gre score is 300
    quant 155 verbal 145 awa 2.5
    b.e ece aggreagete 7.7 (2 backs)
    im in my final yera

    i have listed some univs plz giv ur opnion on thm
    1.university of california-irvine
    2.utah university
    3.university of north carolina-charlotte
    4.Iowa state university
    5 university of texas-arlington
    plz giv me ur feed back
    and do suggst me few more of my range in my field of embedded systems

  • November 26, 2013 at 7:47 am

    Plz evaluate my profile

    GRE- 311
    TOEFL-102(R:24 L:26 S:27 W:25)
    CGPA-9.16/10 2013 pass out

    3 PROJECTS- 1) Motion Sensor detector
    2)Interfacing censors with PIC Microcontroller
    3)Design and Implementation of MEMS Actuator and a Varactor

    INTERNSHIP-1 month
    CSIR-CEERI (Central Electronics Engineering Research Institute) Pilani Rajasthan

    Plz rate the universities in my list

    4) NCSU
    10) UC BOULDER
    11) UMASS

    Also please suggest other universities suitable for my profile 🙂

    Thank u in advance

    • November 27, 2013 at 2:40 am

      forgot to mention, masters in electrical engg

  • November 29, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Applying for MS in ECE with courses in vlsi/embedded system CPI : 8.7/10.0 (or 3.48/4 GPA approx or even more. Will take 5$ WES) (up to 6th Sem)(Rank 2 in dept 30 in GTU) GRE 316 (168|148| 3.5) TOEFL – 100 (R- 27, L – 24, S – 20, W – 29) Good Sops, LORs from faculties, Project and good extra curricular. No publications yet.

    Kindly help to suggest dream/ambi/mod/safe

    1 University of Southern California (Viterbi)
    2 University of Maryland–College Park (Clark)
    3 Texas A&M University-College Station (Look)
    4 Virginia Tech
    5 Arizona State University (Fulton)
    6 North Carolina State University
    7 University of Florida
    8 Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey –New Brunswick
    9 University of Texas, Dallas
    10 University of Illinois, Chicago
    11 Drexell University
    12 Georgia Tech

    Pls also suggest any other good uni for vlsi or embedded according to my profile. TY in advance.

  • December 10, 2013 at 6:04 am

    GRE – 311 (Quant-159 + Verbal-153 AW-3.5)
    – B-TECH CSE : 63.93%. 8 Backlogs(out of which 5 absent and 3 fail)
    – 1.6 year of experience in Wipro as project engineer
    – 1 professional award as best employee in Wipro and certificate of recognition in the project in Wipro
    Could you please suggest the list of universities for MS in CS FALL 2014(Safe and Moderate)

  • December 22, 2013 at 11:52 am

    My GRE score is 293 and i want to go for MS in the field of ELECTRONICS or ELECTRICAL.So please suggest me some university..Thank you…

  • December 27, 2013 at 5:44 am

    Please evaluate my profile:Aiming for M.S in microelectronics or any related field.
    B.E ECE-8.3
    1 year experience in Software MNC;
    i have chosen following universities.
    1.National University of singapore.
    2.Nanyang technological university,singapore.
    3.Technical university of Munich,germany.
    4.University of Massachettus-amherst.
    5.Clemson University.
    6.North Carolina State University
    Thank you

  • December 30, 2013 at 7:04 am

    Hi, I am a final year undergraduate at National Institute of Technology Hamirpur, pursuing B.Tech in Electronics n telecomm with a latest CGPI of 7.9. My GRE stats are like verbal-152 , Quant-168 (overall 320) . TOEFL -100. I have got a journal paper with impact factor 0.92 and two international conference publications with one in Taiwan and other in india. I have got two international internships, with first one at a Japanese Lab on silicon photonics and other one on Bio-photonics with a Taiwanese Research group. Regarding SOP, I m pretty crystal clear with the work description for my masters and I will reflect those research interests via relating to my past work. I am in process of bagging another journal paper with Japanese society of Applied physics. For LORs, I have three sources in my mind – 1. My Taiwanese professor (He is a renowned statue in biophotonics and former work associate with Richard Feynman) 2. My Japanese professor 3. Dean (Ex-HOD of my department) of my home institution. After my GRE exam, I had applied to Electronics domain at Cornell university, University of California Davis and Ghent university (Belgium). Also I applied to Rice university in optical engineering. Since I have crossed deadlines of a majority of universities, I was helplessly left with these options only. Kindly tell my odds with these universities. If possible, please counsel me other viable options at above mentioned credentials. Thanks a lot 🙂

  • January 6, 2014 at 10:56 am

    hiiii.. pls help me…my gre score is 295,toeffl 92,agg is 63%, 5 backlogs,10th 77%,12th 84%,suggest me from these univ..
    1) csu northridge
    2) texas a&m.kingsville
    3)University of texas,arlington
    for MS mechanical

  • January 21, 2014 at 4:24 pm

    Hi, I’m interested in pursuing a MS in Computer Science, The following are my credentials:
    GRE: 319, Quant:162, Verbal:157.
    Toefl: 113.
    I have completed my masters in information technology from mumbai university with 58.2%
    Before masters I did my bachelors in computer science from mumbai university with 60%.
    No work experience.
    Can you please tell me which universities I have a realistic chance to get into.
    Some Universities that I am interested in are:
    1)University of Southern California
    2)Arizona State University, Tempe
    3)University of Florida, Gainsville
    4)University of Maryland College Park
    5)Rutgers, State University of New Jersey
    6)Stony Brook University

    Can you please evaluate my profile and my chances in the above universities, also if there are other universities that i should look into.

  • February 1, 2014 at 2:04 pm

    GRE – 303 (Q-154, V-149, AWA-3)
    TOEFL – Not Yet taken.. aiming for 100 and above.
    GPA – 3.82/5.0 – (about 3.3 0n a 4.0 scale)
    I wish to apply to Missouri State University, Wichita state University and New Mexico state University for graduate studies in Aerospace engineering. Are these Choices good?
    please suggest some other Universities that I have chances of getting admitted with my score

  • April 18, 2014 at 6:47 am


    My GRE score :299 ( Q: 152, V: 147 )
    Toefl : 83

    BE in computer science with an aggregate of 84%.

    1 year work experience as a Software Developer.

    I have got an admit from IUPUI ( Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis ) .

    Is that a good university to pursue my MS ?

    Please please do suggest me.

    Thanks a lot.

  • May 12, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    Hello Mr.Raghav,

    I am Chandramouli 2011 year passed out from EEE department,Right now I am working in the core company for the past 3 years,my details are follows as below:

    B.E=79%(EEE)(one of the topper of my department)
    my gre score(quants=153,verbal=141,total=294)
    I would like to to do masters in electrical(VLSI), KIndly evaluate my profile please tell me the universities where i can apply.Please tell me some 8 universities.

    • May 12, 2014 at 4:17 pm

      Bachelor Of Engineering percentage -79 (no backlogs) and I am one of the department topper in my college (with in 5% of the class strength).2)I presented 2 paper’s in the college level and got first prize also(but not a single author).3)During working I have been to two International countries for execution of their projects and stayed there for 45 days.

  • June 20, 2014 at 12:33 pm

    im studying btech final year mechanical engineering
    10th 89%
    intermediate 90.5%
    btech 7.5/10 till now without backlogs

    intrested in ms in automobile germany ..

    can u suggest me the best universities and how to approach them , score in ielts so and so

  • July 12, 2014 at 3:52 pm

    Wish to pursue MS in MIS from US.
    BE in Comp (2013) from pune univ with 69.11% aggr of all 4 yrs (1st class with dist)
    moderate extra curr activities
    GRE: 314 (v=151, q=163, a=4)
    TOEFL: 112
    Currently have work exp of 6 months in Deloitte USI.
    pls suggest moderate n safe univs which have good options for financial aid & preferably good placements too.
    Thanks !

  • July 15, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    Hi My Gre score is 315.

    V: 152
    Q:163 AWA :4.0
    IELTS Expecting 7.0 or 6.5
    I have 2.9 yrs of Experience ,CGPA 7.1

    Want to do MS in Management In Information Systems.

    Can U suggest me which colleges are Ambiitious and Moderate.

    Thanks Karim

  • July 21, 2014 at 8:18 am

    sir,i want to do ms in us.i am studying b.tech 4th year,ece.
    i am confusing to take specialisation course would you help me

  • August 18, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    Gre: 313
    Quant:167 Verbal:146
    Reading Listening Speaking Writing
    21 23 23 21
    College:National Institute of Technology Calicut
    BRANCH:Computer Science
    Recommend univeristies for MS

  • September 1, 2014 at 7:11 am

    I have done B.Tech.(Mech) now I am preparing for MS Can I get MS in computer related course

  • September 1, 2014 at 7:42 am

    My expected gre score is 300.
    I did my B.E. in ECE and now want to do MS in comp science.i have work exp of 8 months.
    please suggest me some public universities in decent location in US which are not costly.

    Thank you

  • October 16, 2014 at 6:22 am

    can someone tell me which among the following universities require WES or ECE evaluation?
    University of Maryland
    University of Colorado Boulder
    Rutgers University
    North Carolina State University
    Northeastern University
    Polytechnic Institute of New York University
    Drexel University
    University at Buffalo (SUNY)
    Pennsylvania State University
    University of Minnesota Twin Cities
    Iowa State University

  • December 1, 2014 at 7:53 pm

    Could you give your suggestion?
    GRE (V151 Q161 AW3), TOEFL(101: all sections above 21), low GRE Subject 🙁 , greencard holder in California.
    Master in Mathematics, 4 years of teaching (1 year in California).
    I am applying for PhD program in Pure math.
    Southern California, Riverside, Irvine, Santa Barbara
    Wyoming, Purdue, Michigan Tech.
    Thank you

  • April 4, 2015 at 2:03 pm

    hii ,
    My Profile:
    GRE – 293 (141-verbal , 152-quant)
    IELTS -6.5
    btech % – 83 (computer science)
    Internship – 6 months in IBM
    Im interested in CS
    Can you please tell me which universities I have a realistic chance to get into.
    Some Universities that I am interested in are:
    2)Arizona State University, Temple
    3)North Eastern universty,boston
    4)Sunny buffalo,Newyork
    5)Rutgers, State University of New Jersey
    6)Stony Brook University

    Can you please evaluate my profile and my chances in the above universities, also if there are other universities that i should look into. thanks in advance..

  • December 2, 2015 at 5:05 pm

    I got 298 in gre (Q 153 and V 145 awa 2.5) toefl 80 and average is 54 % completed Bpharm. suggest some university for ms in pharmacology. one of friend got in a university under similar proflie but he had research papers too with him and thats huge difference
    Plz suggest some university who accpts such profile in ms in pharmacology applying for fall 2016

  • January 24, 2016 at 8:32 am

    I am interested in Electrical Engineering especially VLSI. I got admit in UT Dallas and Binghamton, NY for fall 2016. I have also applied for San Jose State University and University of California, Davis and waiting for admit.
    I wanted to know of the four Universities that I have chosen which University is good in academics (VLSI) as well as gives me good job opportunities in VLSI .
    Kindly suggest.

  • October 18, 2016 at 6:12 pm

    My GRE score is too low i.e 278, Quant 140, Vocab 138 and AWA 3.5, I have decent TOEFL score 98 and have completed my Bachelor of Engineering in Information Technology with CGPA 7.49 (6 backlogs 1-3 semesters, all cleared), I am targeting spring 2017 and I dont have time to retake GRE, please suggest me safe universities where I have a decent chances of getting an admission


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