Step-by-Step Guide for Applying to Master’s Degree in the USA: Admission Timeline for Fall 2025

We hope everyone who attended our seminar on June 16th found it enjoyable and informative! It was great to see so many enthusiastic faces ready to explore the exciting opportunities for pursuing a Master’s degree in America in Fall 2025.

For those who want a detailed breakdown of the application process, this blog will provide a comprehensive timeline for Fall 2025 to help you plan your journey from preparing for exams to securing your visa for the Fall 2025 intake. Let’s dive in!

Things you need to do between August 2024 – December 2024:

1. Take Your GRE and TOEFL/IELTS Test

What to Do

  • Prepare and Register for Exams: Begin studying for the GRE and TOEFL/IELTS as early as possible. Join our GRE classroom coaching or use our self-prep course for practice and mock tests.
  • Schedule Exam Dates: Aim to take the exams by October/November to give yourself enough time for retakes if necessary.

Tips

  • Create a Study Plan: Break down your study materials into manageable chunks and set daily or weekly goals. You can download your FREE study plan here.
  • Join Study Groups: Collaborate with peers preparing for these exams. Sharing resources and tips can be very beneficial.
  • Use Apps and Online Resources: Dilip Oak’s Academy platform will give you a lot of preparation material. Additionally, platforms like Khan Academy offer some great free resources.

2. Documentation

What to Do

  • Draft Your Statement of Purpose (SOP): Start writing your SOP early. Highlight your academic background, career goals, and why you want to study in the US.
  • Request Recommendation Letters: Reach out to professors or professionals who can provide strong, personalized recommendations. Give them ample time to write these letters.
  • Prepare Your Resume: Update your resume with relevant academic and professional experiences.

Tips

  • Seek Feedback: Have mentors, peers, or professional editors review your SOP. Multiple revisions will ensure it’s polished. Our expert counselors will help you highlight your academic and professional achievements and frame persuasive documents.
  • Organize Documents: Create a checklist of all required documents to ensure nothing is overlooked.
  • Be Authentic: Your SOP should reflect your genuine interests and aspirations.

3. University Selection

What to Do

  • Research Universities: Look into universities that offer your desired program. Consider factors like faculty, research opportunities, campus facilities, location, and financial aid. Click here to find out more about our Admission Counseling services.
  • Attend Webinars and Info Sessions: Many universities host online sessions for prospective students. Participate in these to get a better understanding of what they are offering for Fall 2025.
  • Connect with Alumni: Reach out to alumni through LinkedIn or university forums to get insider perspectives.

Tips

  • Create a Shortlist: Narrow down your list to about 5-8 universities that align best with your goals.
  • Consider Safe, Match, and Reach Schools: Ensure your list includes a mix of universities where you are likely to get admitted (safe), have a good chance (match), and dream schools (reach).

4. Application Process

What to Do

  • Complete Online Applications: Fill out application forms for your chosen universities. Ensure all sections are completed accurately. You can also get guidance from our expert staff, who will help fill out the complex university application forms for Fall 2025 and resolve all documentation-related doubts.
  • Submit Required Documents: Upload your SOP, recommendation letters, resume, transcripts, and test scores.
  • Pay Application Fees: Each application usually requires a fee—budget for these expenses.

Tips

  • Track Deadlines: Use a planner or digital calendar to track each university’s application deadlines.
  • Proofread Everything: Double-check all your application materials for errors or omissions.
  • Stay Organized: Keep copies of all submitted documents and confirmation receipts.

Things to do between February 2025 – June 2025:

1. Accepting Admits and Getting the I-20

What to Do

  • Evaluate Offers: Consider factors such as tuition cost, living cost, and financial aid (if any) when deciding which offer to accept.
  • Submit Acceptance: Notify the university of your decision to accept their offer. Some universities may demand a Bank certificate equivalent to the total cost of 1-year.
  • Obtain an I-20 Form: Once you accept an offer, the university will send you an I-20 form necessary for your visa application.

Tips

  • Compare Financial Aid Packages: Ensure you understand the terms and conditions of any financial aid or scholarships offered.
  • Respond Promptly: Adhere to the acceptance deadlines provided by the universities.

2. Visa Application

What to Do

  • Pay SEVIS Fee: Before applying for a visa, pay the SEVIS fee online.
  • Schedule Visa Interview: Attend the Visa workshop for parents and students conducted by Dilip Oak’s Academy and book your appointment at the US embassy or consulate in your country.
  • Prepare for the Interview: Gather necessary documents, including your I-20, acceptance letter, financial proof, and passport.

Tips

  • Practice Interview Questions: Familiarize yourself with common visa interview questions and practice your responses by attending the mock visa interview by Mr. Dilip Oak.
  • Dress Professionally: First impressions matter, so dress appropriately for your interview.
  • Be Honest: Answer all questions truthfully and confidently.

Things you need to between July 2025 – August 2025:

Travel to the US

What to Do

  • Book Your Flight: Once your visa is approved, book your flight to the US.
  • Arrange Accommodation: Look for on-campus housing or off-campus options. Start this process early to secure a place that suits your needs.
  • Pack Essentials: Make a checklist of important items to pack, including documents, clothing, and other personal necessities.

Tips

  • Attend Pre-Departure Orientation: The Pre-departure orientation by Dilip Oak’s Academy for Fall 2025 will give you numerous tips to help you prepare for life in the US.
  • Connect with Other Students: During the pre-departure orientation, connect with students from the same university. Also, join social media groups or forums to meet fellow students and share tips.
  • Learn About Your Destination: Familiarize yourself with the area, climate, and local culture of your university’s location.

Embarking on your journey to pursue a Master’s degree in the US is an exciting adventure. You can download a FREE Fall Intake: Admission Process Timeline to stay organized.

As India’s leading study abroad consultant, Dilip Oak’s Academy offers a comprehensive suite of admission counseling services that can guide you through the entire process from Shortlisting Universities to Visa Counseling. With our expertise, we have successfully sent 32,000 students to various prestigious American universities like MIT, Stanford, Cornell, and Carnegie Mellon. We also offer classroom and online coaching for GRE, TOEFL, and IELTS, as well as GRE Self Prep. Book a free consultation or call us at 91-20-67444222 to explore our services.

Successful 27th Annual Pre-Departure Orientation for Indian Students joining Master Degree in the US for Fall 2024

Pre-Departure Orientation

On June 16th, 2024, Dilip Oak’s Academy, in association with HDFC Credila, hosted its annual Pre-Departure Orientation for students joining US universities for master’s degrees in August 2024 (Fall semester). This long-standing tradition, held since 1998, took place at Siddhi Banquet Hall, Pune and attracted around 1100 students and parents, making it one of the largest events of its kind in India.

Distinguished Guests and Key Insights

The event was graced by esteemed guests Dr. David Alexander, Dean of the College of Engineering and Computer Science, Ms. Tasha Alexander, Director of International Student Services, both from California State University, Chico, and Ms. Sarika Oak, Senior Director, Udemy Inc., San Francisco. Their presence added significant value to the orientation, providing students firsthand insights into American campus life.

Mr. Dilip Oak explained that there are currently many job openings in the fields of engineering, architecture, and finance. It is a fact that, at present, job opportunities in computer science are very limited. But hopefully, the situation will change after January 2025. There will be more opportunities for the latest technologies like artificial intelligence, machine learning, deep learning, cybersecurity etc. He also provided crucial information on pre-travel preparations, including medical checks, insurance, immunization, and foreign exchange regulations.

Practical Advice and Encouragement

Sarika Oak shed light on campus life, accommodation, and job opportunities after graduation. She added that students should be proactive and make the most of every opportunity as that would make them well-rounded and work-ready. She emphasized the importance of building relationships beyond the Indian community to land internships and jobs. Her advice about on-campus employment and paid internships during Curriculum Practical Training (CPT) was a game-changer for those worried about repaying student loans.

Dr. David Alexander said there will be job opportunities starting in January 2025. However, jobs will be available to those students who excel academically and can crack 5-6 rounds of interviews. He also recommended that students stay informed of the changing trends and learn newer technologies.

Celebrating Our Achievers

A special highlight of the Pre-Departure Orientation 2024 was the felicitation of our students who achieved exceptional GRE scores and secured admits to prestigious universities. These accomplished students will join top-tier institutions such as Carnegie Mellon University, Columbia University, Georgia Institute of Technology, University of California, Berkley and Purdue University. Their fields of study are as diverse as their talents, ranging from Computer Science, Data Science, Cyber Security Management Information Systems and various engineering fields. We are incredibly proud of their achievements and confident that they will continue to excel in their chosen paths, contributing to the global community with their expertise and dedication.

Read this blog to know more about getting an internship during your MS program.

Real Stories, Real Impact

The program left a lasting impression on both students and parents.

Pradeep Kulkarni said this session resolved his doubts and concerns as a parent, thus reassuring him about the investment in his child’s education, thanks to the positive job prospects in America. He also praised the comprehensive guidance, which covered everything from settling into university life to finding housing and securing jobs.

Khushi Shah, an academy student, shared her seamless experience with the Academy’s support in university selection, Statement of Purpose drafting, and visa interview preparation. Her efforts, guided by Mr. Oak, led to her securing admission to all the universities she applied to.

Shivendra Bhonsle, our online GRE coaching and counseling student, expressed gratitude for the support and guidance he received that helped him achieve his dream. Moreover, the pre-departure event addressed all his doubts and eased his parent’s concerns about safety, job opportunities, and accommodations.

Akanksha Bharambe said that the Academy’s efforts were crucial in securing her admission to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. The application process was seamless for her, especially the mock visa interview conducted by Mr. Oak, which boosted her confidence.

Wrapping Up

The Pre-Departure Orientation 2024 was a great success, equipping students and parents with essential knowledge and boosting their confidence as they prepare for their academic journey in the US. With over 26 years of experience, Dilip Oak’s Academy continues to guide students through their higher education journey in America.

As India’s leading Study Abroad Consultant, Dilip Oak’s Academy offers a comprehensive suite of admission counseling services that can guide you through the entire process from Shortlisting Universities to Visa Counseling. With our expertise, we have successfully sent 32,000 students to various prestigious American universities like MIT, Stanford, Cornell, and Carnegie Mellon. We also offer classroom and online coaching for GRE, TOEFL, and IELTS, as well as GRE Self Prep. To explore our services, book a free consultation or call us at 91-20-67444222.

Opportunities for a Master’s Degree in America

Pursuing Master's Degree in America: Free seminar

Are you dreaming of pursuing a master’s degree in the United States? The journey from aspiration to achievement begins with the right guidance and information. Whether you’re aiming to study in the land of opportunity or just curious about what it takes, our upcoming FREE seminar will cover everything you need to know about pursuing a master’s degree in America.

Job Opportunities

The USA offers countless job opportunities across various industries. From tech and finance to healthcare and engineering, there’s a booming market for skilled professionals. Our seminar will explore current economic trends and highlight the hottest job sectors. Knowing where the opportunities lie can give you a head start in your career planning.

Work Permit and Green Card Formalities

One of the critical aspects of studying and working in the U.S. is understanding the visa and immigration process. Our seminar will provide a detailed overview of the work permit (OPT and CPT) and Green Card. Understanding these formalities is crucial, and we’ll make it as straightforward as possible.

Don’t miss this invaluable opportunity to get a head start on your dream. Register Now for the FREE seminar.

Funding Your Education

Financing your education is often one of the most daunting aspects of studying abroad. However, plenty of scholarships, grants, and assistantships are available to international students. Our seminar will provide insights into various funding options and offer tips on managing your finances while studying. Understanding your funding options can ease your financial burden and allow you to focus on your studies.

Prerequisite Examinations

Most U.S. universities require international students to take standardized tests as part of their application process. These may include the GRE, TOEFL, or IELTS. We will break down the importance of these exams, what scores you should aim for, and how to prepare effectively.

Application Timeline

Timing is everything when it comes to applying for a master’s degree in America. Our seminar will provide a detailed application timeline, starting from selecting universities to submitting your application and beyond. We will discuss the importance of building a strong application profile, including letters of recommendation, personal statements, and resumes.

Why Attend Our Seminar?

This seminar is designed to equip you with the knowledge and tools you need to succeed in your pursuit of a master’s degree in the United States. You will be able to interact with experts, ask questions, and gain insights that are not readily available online.

Register now for our FREE seminar and take the first step towards a brighter future. Seats are limited, so make sure to secure your spot today!

Date: 16th June, 2024
Time:
11:00 am (English & Marathi)
6:30 pm (English)
Venue: Siddhi Banquet Hall
D.P. Road, Near Mhatre Bridge, Erandwane, Pune 411004
Fields: The seminar is open to students from all engineering fields, computer science and related fields, architecture, and finance.

We look forward to helping you turn your dreams into reality. See you there!

As India’s leading Study Abroad Consultant, Dilip Oak’s Academy offers a comprehensive suite of admission counseling services that can guide you through the entire process from Shortlisting Universities to Visa Counseling. With our expertise, we have successfully sent 32,000 students to various prestigious American universities like MIT, Stanford, Cornell, and Carnegie Mellon. We also offer classroom and online coaching for GRE, TOEFL, and IELTS, as well as GRE Self Prep. To explore our services, book a free consultation or call us at 91-20-67444222.

The Ultimate Guide to Getting an Internship During Your US Master’s Program: CPT, Legalities, Tips & More

Getting an Internship during your USA Master's Program

Are you a student pursuing a Master’s degree in the USA? Are you eager to gain practical experience and boost your career prospects with an internship? Look no further! Here’s everything you need to know about securing an internship during your USA Master’s program!

Understanding CPT (Curriculum Practical Training)

If you’re enrolled in a Master’s program, you’re eligible for CPT, which allows you to work in a position related to your field of study. To qualify, you need to have a valid F-1 immigration status for at least two full-time semesters (equivalent to one academic year). CPT lets you work in a job related to your field of study for up to 364 days.

Why Go for Internships?

Internships aren’t just about making coffee runs, and they offer much more than just workplace experience – they provide invaluable insights into American work culture and help you build a strong foundation for your future career. Typically lasting 10 to 12 weeks during summer breaks (generally from 15th May to 15th August), internships offer opportunities to apply classroom learning to real-world scenarios. Some universities even allow extensions for up to 20 weeks (i.e., for the entire third semester), providing extended hands-on experience. In very rare cases, students can do an Internships during the USA Master’s Program for the full term of 364 days.

The Legal Stuff

Before you jump into an internship, it’s essential to understand the legal requirements. To be eligible for an internship, you must obtain CPT work authorization, which allows off-campus employment for international students (F-1 visa holders) pursuing study programs in the USA and wanting to gain experience in their fields of study. Keep in mind that CPT is not available once you’ve completed your degree program.

Still studying for your GRE? Explore our numerous blogs on GRE Quantitative Reasoning and GRE Verbal Reasoning.

How to Secure an Internship during your USA Master’s Program?

Here are some simple yet effective tips to help you land your dream internship:

Polish Your Resume:

  • Outline your major responsibilities within your previous professional work experience. Include action words (such as facilitated, led, managed, maintained, operated, recommended, etc.) that highlight your skills.
  • List relevant courses or projects you have worked on.
  • List your extracurricular activities or volunteer experience.
  • Keep the formatting simple and clean.

Tap into Your University’s Resources:

Every university has a career center or an internship coordinator for co-op and internship programs. Approach them to apply to the positions that interest you. Generally, every university also has a career center website showing internship opportunities in various corporations. Students are advised to visit this website regularly for updated listings and resources.

Explore Online Platforms:

Use job boards like LinkedIn, Monster, Indeed, and Glassdoor to search for internships in your field of interest. Create profiles and set up job alerts to stay informed about new opportunities. You can also use online forums like Glassdoor to look at the interview questions asked in companies that interest you.

Network, Network, Network:

  • Request Referrals within Your Network: Connect with individuals in your network within the US and inquire if they are acquainted with employees at companies you are interested in. Internal referrals from existing employees can significantly increase the likelihood of your resume being considered for an interview.
  • Career Fairs: Universities typically host career fairs each semester, providing an excellent opportunity to engage with potential employers and alumni. These events offer insights into industry hiring trends, facilitate networking, and present internship prospects.
  • Information Sessions and Tech Talks: Universities often arrange information sessions and tech talks featuring various companies, especially during career fairs. These sessions allow current employees, often university alumni, to share insights about their companies and potential opportunities. Prepare a targeted resume to distribute and ask insightful questions beyond what’s available on the company’s website.

Ready to Take the Next Step?

Don’t wait for opportunities to come to you – take action now! Update your resume, reach out to your network, and start exploring internship options today. Whether you are aiming for a summer internship during your USA Master’s Program or seeking opportunities during the academic year, now is the time to kickstart your career journey.

As India’s leading Study Abroad Consultant, Dilip Oak’s Academy offers a comprehensive suite of admission counseling services that can guide you through the entire process from Shortlisting Universities to Visa Counseling. With our expertise, we have successfully sent 32,000 students to various prestigious American universities like MIT, Stanford, Cornell, and Carnegie Mellon. We also offer classroom and online coaching for GRE, TOEFL, and IELTS, as well as GRE Self Prep. To explore our services, book a free consultation or call us at 91-20-67444222.

Understanding the I-20 Form: Importance and Purpose

When you’re accepted into a Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP)-certified school in the United States as an international student on an F-1 or M-1 visa, you’ll receive a Form I-20 from your designated school official (DSO). This I-20 Form, issued by the Department of Homeland Security, is crucial as it certifies your eligibility to travel to the US as a student, distinguishing you from an immigrant.
Remember that your I-20 is essential for visa application and entry to the US but is NOT a visa. Visas are issued by US consulates, while the I-20 is produced by your school.

Key Points to Verify on Your I-20 Form

Your I-20 is a 3-page document containing essential details, with the most crucial information on the first page. Before accepting your I-20, it’s important to check the following:

Personal Information

Verify that the following details match those on your passport:

  • Surname/Primary name
  • Given name
  • Country of birth
  • Country of citizenship
  • City of birth
  • Date of birth

School Information

Confirm that the following details are correct:

  • School name (name of the university)
  • Education level (degree applied for)
  • Major (field of study)
  • Start of classes (start date of the course)
  • Program start and end date

In case there’s a mistake in the above information, you can request the university to send a revised and corrected I-20.

Note: While the typical duration between the start and end dates is around 21 months, on certain I-20 forms, it may extend to 28 or even 36 months. However, this does not imply that your course will be longer. The university provides a grace period for completing your studies. Most programs are completed within 3 to 4 semesters, totaling 16 to 21 months.

Financials

Review the estimated costs and funding sources on the form, including scholarships, personal funds, and other financial assistance.
Most universities provide the estimated average cost for 9 months, while some cover expenses for 12 months, which includes living costs for the Summer semester.
The estimated average cost specifies each of the following items separately:

  • Tuition and fees
  • Living expenses
  • Expenses of dependents
  • Other miscellaneous costs, such as health insurance

This section also mentions Funding sources, which may include

  • Funds from the school (scholarships/financial assistance)
  • Personal funds, funds from another source (Family funds)
  • Funds from other sources

During the visa interview, students must present financial documents demonstrating access to liquid funds equivalent to the total cost specified on the I-20.
Note: Liquid funds include funds in bank, education loan, employee provident fund, investment in shares and mutual funds.

School and Student Attestation

Confirm that the appropriate university official has signed the I-20. It is also important for you to sign it before your visa interview.

Understanding the Second and Third Pages of the Form I-20

The university utilizes the second page of the I-20 for employment authorization during Curriculum Practical Training (CPT), which allows the student to work in the United States. It also serves as a travel endorsement for a student’s re-entry to the same school after a temporary absence from the United States. Each endorsement remains valid for one year. The third page provides essential instructions for students.

Electronic I-20 Copy for Visa Application

An electronic copy of your signed I-20 is acceptable for visa appointments and entry to the US. Print the signed copy for your visa interview and travel.

Visa Application and SEVIS Fee

After receiving your I-20, you can apply for your visa by scheduling your interview within 360 days before the program start date. Before the interview, ensure you pay the $350 SEVIS fee online. To pay the I-901 SEVIS Fee, go to FMJfee and fill out the SEVIS Form I-901.

Dependent I-20s

Your family members (spouse or unmarried children under 21) must have their own separate I-20s. They will need these I-20s to apply for and enter the US with F-2 visas.

Traveling with your I-20 Form

While studying as an F-1 student, having your I-20 with you is important whenever you travel. You’ll need to carry it along with your passport and F-1 visa when traveling internationally and returning to the US. Make sure to get your I-20 signed by an advisor from the International Center at least once a year if you plan to travel outside the US.

Other Uses of the Form I-20 Form

Your Form I-20 serves as proof of your legal enrollment in a study program within the United States, which is essential when seeking benefits accessible to F and M students. Whether applying for a driver’s license, a Social Security Number, or commencing employment on or off campus, remember to carry your Form I-20 with you.

In Conclusion

Understanding your I-20 is crucial for a smooth transition to studying in the US. By carefully reviewing its contents and following the necessary steps, you can ensure compliance with immigration regulations and enjoy a successful academic journey in the United States.

As India’s leading Study Abroad Consultant, Dilip Oak’s Academy offers a comprehensive suite of admission counseling services that can guide you through the entire process from Shortlisting Universities to Visa Counseling. With our expertise, we have successfully sent 32,000 students to various prestigious American universities like MIT, Stanford, Cornell, and Carnegie Mellon. We also offer classroom and online coaching for GRE, TOEFL, and IELTS, as well as GRE Self Prep. To explore our services, book a free consultation or call us at 91-20-67444222.

The Ultimate Master’s Program Application Guide: Expert Tips for Spring 2025

Spring 2025

Missed the Fall 2024 application deadlines? Not sure what to do next? You’re in the right place! While Fall semester applications are more common, Spring 2025 semester admissions are equally feasible and offer ample opportunities, and we’re here to guide you through the application process. Let’s break it down step by step.

Why Apply for Spring 2025?

Opting for the Spring semester doesn’t just offer flexibility; it unlocks doors to a range of academic opportunities. Numerous universities offer admissions for both Fall and Spring semesters, allowing students to select the timeline that perfectly fits their needs. Choosing Spring 2025 isn’t just about avoiding a year-long wait due to a missed Fall deadline; it’s about seizing the chance to align your academic aspirations with your preferred start date, ensuring a smooth transition into your Master’s program.

Application Timeline

To help you navigate the application process smoothly, let’s break down the timeline:

Pre-requisite Tests: February-June 2024

Before diving into the application process, it’s essential to complete the necessary tests:

GRE and TOEFL/IELTS:

Aim to complete these exams by June 30, 2024. You can explore the comprehensive study options at Dilip Oak’s Academy here: GRE Classroom Coaching, TOEFL Classroom Coaching, and IELTS Classroom Coaching.

Gather Necessary Documents: June-July 2024

Assemble the required documents for your applications:

Statement of Purpose (SOP):

The SOP is a crucial document that offers insight into not only your reasons for choosing the course and university, but also your personality, field experience, and long-term goals. It should be concise, compelling, grammatically correct, and technically sound, spanning approximately 500 to 800 words.

Transcripts:

Obtain official transcripts from your previous institutions. Apply for transcripts well in advance, as some colleges or universities may require more time to process them.

Recommendation Letters:

Recommendation letters are critical documents that vouch for your qualities, background, and achievements as a candidate for the master’s programs. Virtually every university requires applicants to submit three recommendation letters. Choose your recommenders (college professors, project guides, or employers) carefully as these letters are meant to provide a comprehensive view of your suitability for the academic program.

Selection of Universities for Final Application: July-September 2024

Once you’ve completed your tests, it’s time to research and shortlist universities. Consider the following factors:

Specializations:

Not every university provides all specializations. To identify the right fit, explore each university’s course structure, programs, and research areas of professors, aligning them with your academic interests and career goals.

GRE Score:

Usually, universities don’t specify the minimum required score for applications. The score needed varies based on the university’s rank and reputation, information that’s often not available on their website. To gauge the score required, you can refer to the database of previous students admitted to these universities. Dilip Oak’s Academy maintains an extensive database of over 32,000 students who enrolled in various American universities since 1996, including those universities that offer a GRE waiver post COVID. Thus, our extensive database can help you gauge the scores accepted by various institutions.

TOEFL/IELTS Score:

Students must achieve the minimum qualifying score set by the university. Typically, most universities require a TOEFL score of 80, but some may ask for a higher score, up to 100. Similarly, for IELTS, a band score of 6.5 is commonly required, although some universities may seek a higher band, up to 7.5.

Academic Record:

Your academic record from your bachelor’s degree plays an important role in the application process. A strong year-wise GPA is necessary for admission to reputable universities. It’s advisable for students to avoid backlogs or year gaps.

Co-curricular Activities:

Projects, internships, paper presentations, publications, and seminar participations will strengthen your profile, increasing your chances of acceptance into better universities.

Budget:

Tuition fees and living expenses vary among universities, with state universities generally being more affordable than private ones. Students should carefully consider their financial situation when selecting universities. Additionally, students can explore education loans offered by various financial institutions to help cover costs.

Sending applications to universities: July-September 2024

Select 6 to 8 Universities:

Based on the abovementioned criteria, narrow down your choices to 6 to 8 universities for your final applications.

Complete Online Applications:

Make sure to finish the online application process before the university’s specified deadlines. Some institutions may require additional documents via courier alongside the online submission.

Forward Test Scores:

Request ETS to send your GRE and TOEFL scores to the selected universities (scores typically take a minimum of 2 weeks to arrive). The additional score reporting fee for GRE is $27 and TOEFL is $25.

After Sending Applications: Await Decisions and Prepare for Visa

Admission Decisions:

Anticipate admission decisions around September/October 2024. Once you receive an offer, promptly accept it. You’re allowed to accept multiple admissions before finalizing your choice for visa application.

Obtain I-20:

Upon acceptance, fulfill the necessary documentation requirements. The university will then issue you the I-20, a crucial immigration document for obtaining a visa.

Prepare for Visa:

Verify the accuracy of the information on the I-20 and gather the required financial documentation to apply for your visa.

Visa Application Process:

Schedule a visa interview date upon receiving your I-20. You can apply for an F-1 visa (student visa) within 360 days from the course commencement date mentioned on the I-20 form. Once you secure the visa date, proceed with the interview and complete the remaining formalities leading up to your departure.

Ready to dive into your Master’s journey for Spring 2025? Step up your game by gearing up for your GRE and TOEFL/IELTS exams with us! Already aced those exams? Reach out today to kick start your application process with confidence!

As India’s leading Study Abroad Consultant, Dilip Oak’s Academy offers a comprehensive suite of admission counseling services that can guide you through the entire process from Shortlisting Universities to Visa Counseling. With our expertise, we have successfully sent 32,000 students to various prestigious American universities like MIT, Stanford, Cornell, and Carnegie Mellon. We also offer classroom and online coaching for GRE, TOEFL, and IELTS, as well as GRE Self Prep. To explore our services, book a free consultation or call us at 91-20-67444222.

Applying for Your US Student Visa: Essential FAQs Answered!

There are two categories of student visas: F1 and M1. The M1 visa is given for non-academic or vocational education for a duration of less than a year, and it includes fields such as gemology, aviation etc. F1 visa is given for a full-time program leading to a degree such as a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree, which lasts at least one year. In this blog, we will discuss about the F1 visa. Below are a few important and frequently asked questions.

a) Where can you apply for an F1 visa?

Before COVID-19, applicants could only apply for appointments at the consulate closer to their residence. For example, applicants residing in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Goa, Madhya Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh could only apply to the US Consulate – Mumbai.

But now, there is no such restriction. You are allowed to apply to any Consulate where the appointment dates are available. Sometimes, you may get an appointment for OFC at one consulate and a visa interview at another.

The current visa application fee is $185, payable in INR 15540/-.

b) When will appointments for F1 visas begin for Fall 2024 applicants?

Applicants can apply for an F1 visa within 365 days of the course’s start date mentioned on the I-20. In other words, to ensure you get an early and timely date, you may apply for a visa as soon as you receive an I-20 from any university. Every year, the US consulate tries to accommodate all the students intending to apply for an F1 visa. However, since the number of students applying for visas is quite large, it becomes difficult to get an interview date if they apply in July or August. Therefore, it is advisable that students apply for the interview date as soon as they receive the I-20 from any university.  

Later, if you receive an I-20 from the desired university, you can fill out a new DS-160 mentioning the name of the new university. You must bring the original DS-160 confirmation page you have used to schedule your appointment AND the corrected DS-160 confirmation page to the consulate or document drop-off location on the day of your appointment. If you are unable to bring your original DS-160 confirmation page and your corrected DS-160 confirmation page, you must cancel and reschedule your appointment by entering your corrected DS-160 application number.

Still figuring out which universities to apply to and their deadlines? Here’s a Complete Guide to Fall 2024 MS Program Application Deadlines

c) What is an I-20 form and how do I obtain it?

The Form I-20 is an official US Government form issued by a certified school, which a prospective non-immigrant student must have to get an F-1 or M-1 visa. Form I-20 acts as proof of acceptance and contains the information necessary to pay the SEVIS I-901 fee, apply for a visa and be admitted into the United States. Form I-20 has the student’s SEVIS identification number, which starts with the letter N followed by 10 digits, on the top left-hand side.

The Student and Exchange Visitor Information Service (SEVIS) has been introduced by the Immigration and Naturalization Service (IMS) for students. Before appearing for an F1 visa interview at the consulate, you need to pay SEVIS charges of US $350.

d) If my visa was rejected the first time, can I reapply for it?

Students are allowed to reapply as many as they want.

e) What is the Dropbox facility (Interview Waiver)?

With effect from 1st January 2024, if you have any other valid US visa except a B1/B2 Visa, then you are eligible for a visa through Dropbox, which is nothing but a visa interview waiver that allows eligible individuals to obtain a visa without a face-to-face interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate. Instead, these applicants can submit the required documentation at a designated Dropbox location.

To become eligible for the Dropbox facility,

  • The visa has to be issued after 1st January 2008
  • The visa should be issued after your 14th birthday.

If your visa has already expired, you can avail of the Dropbox facility, provided your visa expired not more than 4 years ago.

f) How long will it take to receive my passport if I apply for the F1 visa through Dropbox?

You are likely to receive your passport within 7 working days.

g) How to book an F1 Visa appointment?

  • Fill up the D-160 form
  • Create a profile on www.ustraveldocs.com
  • Choose the schedule appointment option and select visa type (Non-immigrant)
  • Follow all the instructions given on the website

Ready to take the next step towards your US academic journey? Contact us today to explore our exclusive USA visa counseling services. Our Services consist of the following:

  1. webinar providing detailed information about the Visa process and guidelines
  2. help with the preparation of financial documents
  3. one-on-one appointment with Mr. Dilip Oak for a mock visa interview.

You are also eligible to attend the pre-departure orientation program organized in June.

To enroll, call us at 020-67444222 or email us at support@dilipoakacademy.com.

Complete Guide to Fall 2024 MS Program Application Deadlines

Brunel University campus – the quad

Attention, Fall 2024 MS program applicants! Securing your spot in the upcoming academic year is critical, and timing is everything. In our comprehensive blog, we’re unveiling the essential details of university application deadlines that you’ve been eagerly awaiting.

As the deadline window approaches, students are gearing up to submit their applications before universities’ specified dates. It’s crucial to adhere to these deadlines, ensuring your applications receive the attention they deserve.

Our blog outlines a range of popular universities along with their application deadlines, spanning from December 2023 through July 2024. Additionally, we’ve included a section highlighting universities with rolling admission deadlines, offering students flexibility in their application submissions.

While we’ve meticulously curated this list, it’s important to note that universities may adjust their deadlines throughout the academic year. We strongly advise cross-referencing the dates directly on the official university websites to stay updated with any changes.

Stay ahead of the game by accessing our detailed guide, empowering you to plan your application submission effectively and secure your place in the Fall 2024 MS program.

UniversityDeadline
Deadlines in December
Arizona State University1-Dec
University of Colorado, Boulder1-Dec
Massachusetts Institute of Technology15-Dec
Temple University15-Dec
University of California, Irvine15-Dec
University of California, San Diego15-Dec
University of California, Santa Barbara15-Dec
University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign15-Dec
Deadlines in January
Dartmouth College1-Jan
Duke University1-Jan
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute2-Jan
Kansas State University8-Jan
Washington State University, Pullman10-Jan
Carnegie Mellon University15-Jan
George Washington University15-Jan
Northeastern University, Boston15-Jan
Texas Tech University15-Jan
University of Central Florida15-Jan
University of Cincinnati15-Jan
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor15-Jan
University of Pittsburgh15-Jan
University of Southern California15-Jan
University of Virginia, Charlottesville15-Jan
Indiana University31-Jan
Deadlines in February
Ohio University1-Feb
Oklahoma State University1-Feb
University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa1-Feb
University of Florida, Gainesville1-Feb
University of Kentucky1-Feb
Western Illinois University1-Feb
Columbia University15-Feb
New York University, Tandon School15-Feb
South Dakota School of Mines & Tech15-Feb
University of Illinois Chicago15-Feb
University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth15-Feb
University of Rochester15-Feb
University of San Francisco15-Feb
University of South Florida15-Feb
Deadlines in March
California State University, Sacramento1-Mar
California State University, Chico1-Mar
Central Michigan University1-Mar
City University of New York1-Mar
Colorado School of Mines1-Mar
New Mexico State University1-Mar
Portland State University1-Mar
San Francisco State University1-Mar
State University of New York, Albany1-Mar
Texas Technological University1-Mar
University of Nebraska Lincoln1-Mar
University of Oklahoma, Tulsa1-Mar
University of Texas, El Paso1-Mar
Boston University15-Mar
University of Texas Arlington15-Mar
Deadlines in April
Arkansas State University1-Apr
California State University, Fullerton1-Apr
California State University, Los Angeles1-Apr
Oregon State University1-Apr
San Diego State University1-Apr
San Jose State University1-Apr
University of North Texas1-Apr
University of Oklahoma1-Apr
University of Texas, San Antonio1-Apr
University of Utah1-Apr
University of Virginia1-Apr
Virginia Tech1-Apr
West Virginia University1-Apr
Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo1-Apr
Wichita State University1-Apr
California State University, Long Beach15-Apr
Clemson University15-Apr
Georgia State Univ15-Apr
Louisiana State University15-Apr
Old Dominion University15-Apr
South Dakota State University15-Apr
Stevens Institute of Technology15-Apr
University of Georgia15-Apr
Deadlines in May
Clarkson University1-May
Eastern Michigan University1-May
Illinois State University1-May
Indiana University Purdue University, Indianapolis1-May
New Jersey Institute of Technology1-May
North Carolina State University1-May
Northern Illinois University1-May
Tennessee Technological University1-May
University of Dayton1-May
University of Louisville1-May
University of Memphis1-May
University of Michigan, Dearborn1-May
University of Nevada, Las Vegas1-May
University of New Haven1-May
University of New Mexico1-May
University of North Dakota1-May
University of Texas Dallas1-May
Wayne State University1-May
Cleveland State University15-May
Southern Methodist University15-May
University of Colorado, Denver15-May
University of Louisiana, Lafayette15-May
University of Tennessee, Knoxville15-May
Lawrence Technological University26-May
California State University, Northridge31-May
Deadlines in June
California State University, East Bay1-Jun
Middle Tenn State University1-Jun
North Dakota State University1-Jun
Santa Clara University1-Jun
Syracuse University1-Jun
Texas A & M University, Kingsville1-Jun
Texas State University1-Jun
University of Alabama, Huntsville1-Jun
University of Arizona1-Jun
University of Arkansas, Fayetteville1-Jun
University of Arkansas, Little Rock1-Jun
University of California, Riverside1-Jun
University of Houston, Clear Lake1-Jun
University of Illinois, Springfield1-Jun
University of Massachusetts, Boston1-Jun
Florida Institute of Technology8-Jun
Drexel University13-Jun
Auburn University15-Jun
California State University, Northridge15-Jun
Illinois Institute of Technology15-Jun
Kent State University15-Jun
Missouri University of Science & Technology15-Jun
Villanova University30-Jun
Deadlines in July
Florida International University1-Jul
Florida State University1-Jul
George Mason University1-Jul
Lamar University1-Jul
New York Institute of Technology1-Jul
State University of New York, Albany1-Jul
University of South Alabama1-Jul
Monmouth University15-Jul
Oakland University15-Jul
University of Connecticut15-Jul
Rolling Deadlines
Kettering UniversityRolling
Marquette UniversityRolling
Michigan Technological UniversityRolling
Oklahoma City UniversityRolling
Rochester Institute of TechnologyRolling
State University of New York, BinghamtonRolling
University of AkronRolling
University of Alabama, BirminghamRolling
University of Massachusetts, LowellRolling
University of North Carolina, CharlotteRolling
University of TulsaRolling
Worchester Polytechnic UniversityRolling
Wright State UniversityRolling

Ideally, we recommend that student complete the process by 31 January 2024, even if the universities accept applications beyond that date.

As India’s leading Study Abroad Consultant, Dilip Oak’s Academy offers a comprehensive suite of services. Our admission counseling services can guide you through the entire process from Shortlisting Universities to Visa Counseling. With our expertise, we have successfully sent 32,000 students to various prestigious American universities like MIT, Stanford, Cornell, and Carnegie Mellon.

We also offer online and classroom coaching for GRE, TOEFL, and IELTS, and GRE Self Prep, a self-paced learning module, for those who prefer to learn at their own pace.

To enroll in our comprehensive overseas education consultancy services, book a free consultation or call us at 91-020-67444222.

Applying for MS in Computer Science Without GRE: Considerations and Advantages

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, GRE test centers across the globe faced closures, leading to a significant disruption in test-taking opportunities for aspiring students seeking to study in the US. To counter this, ETS introduced the option to take the GRE from home, but many students didn’t opt for this alternative. Consequently, numerous American universities granted GRE waivers for admissions during Fall 2020 and Fall 2021. However, the landscape has since shifted, with an increasing number of universities now requiring GRE scores for applications, especially in the highly sought-after Computer Science department. As we approach Fall 2024, the trend toward recommending the GRE is expected to continue, necessitating thoughtful consideration from prospective applicants regarding their application strategy.

The Shift in GRE Requirements:

Based on our data for Fall 2023, it’s evident that nearly 55% of universities offering MS programs in Computer Science in the US mandated the submission of GRE scores. This percentage is projected to rise even further in the upcoming application cycles. Notably reputable universities, especially those situated in states like California and Texas, have leaned towards making GRE scores an important component of their application evaluation process. Given this scenario, it is strongly advisable to take the GRE as it significantly broadens your application prospects.

Insights from Recent Surveys:

A survey conducted among 306 students at our academy between May 2023 and July 2023 provided valuable insights into score distribution:

ScoreNumber of Students
330 and above9
320 – 32941
310 – 31987
300 – 30974
Below 30095

Note: Many universities require a GRE score of 300+, and most students who got a score below 300 in their first attempt are retaking the GRE and are confident that they will be able to achieve scores above this threshold in their second attempt. Of course, a few universities do accept GRE score of 292+ if the academic records are strong.

Ease of GRE Preparation and Upcoming Changes:

Contrary to misconceptions, the GRE is not an insurmountable challenge. With roughly three months of focused preparation, achieving your target score is attainable. The forthcoming new GRE format, scheduled to launch on September 22, 2023, aims to streamline the test. The duration will be reduced to two hours from the previous four hours. Changes include reduced number of questions in each section and the removal of one essay section, resulting in a more efficient and less tiring test experience. These modifications make a strong case for considering the GRE. Read what ETS, the people who create the GRE, have to say about the new test format.

Advantages of Submitting a GRE Score:

Enhancing GPA: A robust GRE quant score can offset a lower undergraduate GPA, bolstering your prospects of admission to esteemed universities.

Scholarships and Financial Aid: Many institutions tie GRE scores to scholarship eligibility. A quant score exceeding 165 and a Verbal score surpassing 160 may qualify you for tuition waivers or financial assistance.

Deciding whether to take the GRE:

Explicit Requirement: If a university explicitly states that GRE scores are mandatory, taking the GRE is imperative to achieve your dream of pursuing an MS program in the US.

Recommended: Universities suggesting GRE submission on their websites imply its importance in the application process.

Avoiding Last-Minute Regrets:

Over the past two years, many students have initially opted against taking the GRE, only to find that their desired universities require it. This realization often occurs during the shortlisting process, leaving inadequate time for preparation. To circumvent such scenarios, careful planning and early GRE preparation are highly advisable. Click to know more about the upcoming GRE batches.

Navigating the choice of applying for an MS in Computer Science without a GRE score warrants thoughtful consideration. Evolving trends underscore a growing preference for GRE scores among universities. As demand for Computer Science education remains robust, planning ahead, recognizing the GRE’s significance, and seizing the opportunities it presents are prudent steps.

At Dilip Oak’s Academy, we understand the significance of this journey. Thus, we offer comprehensive GRE coaching in Pune, both online and classroom, to support you in this crucial aspect of your academic journey. Further, our admission counseling services can guide you through the entire process from Shortlisting Universities to Visa Counseling. With our expertise, we have successfully sent 32,000 students to various prestigious American universities like MIT, Stanford, Cornell, and Carnegie Mellon. To enroll in our comprehensive services, book a free consultation or call us at 91-020-67444222.

We offer GRE, TOEFL, and IELTS coaching, GRE Self Prep and guide students with university selection, application essays, and visa counseling under our Admission Counseling Services for USA, Germany and Canada.