Application Process

Application Considerations

Application Considerations

Planning in advance is a key part of any university application process. The following considerations can help applicants do that. However, they should also note individual universities’ requirements and submission deadlines could differ.

Dining hall at the University of Oklahoma, Norman, United States
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Explore future study possibilities

(2-3 years before start of program) 

  • Identify people and resources to help with the university application process  
  • Complete career interest assessments to pinpoint potential careers and fields of study   Participate in extracurricular activities to broaden interests and experiences 
  • Compile a preliminary list of potential universities for application

Choose where to apply

(1-2 years before start of program) 

  • Shortlist 5-10 universities for application
  • Visit in-person or virtually potential universities
  • Create a calendar with application submission deadlines, including entrance exam test dates
  • Create a reference list of extracurricular activities, and awards received
  • Begin studying for entrance exams (such as, TOEFL, SAT, GRE)
  • Start investigating funding options
Baker Library and Tower at Dartmouth College
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Complete applications

(1 year before start of program) 

  • Create accounts on Common Application, Coalition for College, and College Board websites
  • Send school transcripts for external evaluation
  • Register for and take required entrance exams
  • Select people to write letters of recommendation
  • Write college essays and/ or personal statement and research proposal
  • Submit CSS Profile and scholarship applications
  • Submit completed applications to universities

Select university and prepare for travel

(4-6 months before start of program) 

  • Look into housing options on and off-campus   
  • Pay deposit to secure place at chosen university  
  • Submit any final required documents to university
  • Register for student visa interview at the U.S. embassy or consulate in home country
  • Reserve tickets to fly to United States from home country
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