Budget 2020

Timeline to prepare for foreign college admission for undergraduate degree

Getting your child admitted to an undergraduate degree course in a foreign university can seem a daunting task. However, if you start preparing well in advance, then it can help you avoid making mistakes.

Here’s when you need to take crucial decisions for entry into the undergraduate course, college and country of your choice.

36-48 months before (Class 9,10, 11)

  • Work hard to improve your grades as these are considered by foreign universities.
  • Participate in extracurricular activities and Olympiads.
  • Start identifying your subjects of interest and the stream you would like to choose based on your skills.

20-24 months before (Class 11)

  • Start researching the countries, universities and courses you might be interested in.
  • Start preparing for your SAT, IELTS and other English proficiency tests.
  • Take the tests, so that if you don’t get a good score, you have enough time to take it again.

12-18 months before (Class 12)

June to August

  • After getting your score, shortlist 8-10 courses, colleges and universities in the country of your choice. Go through their curriculum, admission and document requirements, and visa rules.
  • Also check the funds needed, scholarships available and approach banks or NBFCs to find out about loan eligibility, if you need it.

August to October

  • Colleges and universities start bringing out applications from August to October of the previous year, so keep an eye out for your shortlisted institutes.
  • Submit the application at the earliest as most deadlines are around October/November, with some extending till January.

8-10 months before

  • Start writing your statement or purpose and essay, which plays a big role in deciding your admission.
  • Contact your references and provide them with the required reference forms to fill up at least a month before the submission deadline.
  • Ask your school to provide all records and transcripts you may need.

5-7 months before

  • Once you start getting acceptance letters and interview slots, finalise them quickly and pay the minimum non-refundable deposit to confirm your admission.
  • Apply for scholarships and other funding sources.
  • Get in place all documents for visa and travel arrangements.

2-3 months

  • Apply for visa and book tickets. Sometimes visa processing may take time, so do it well in time, though some universities have a fixed time before which you cannot apply.
  • Find out about health insurance requirements in the country of your choice. Buy health insurance.
  • Make accommodation arrangements in the country of your choice, whether it is on campus or off campus.

1-2 months

  • Get all the documents and things in place and get set 1-2 months to go abroad for your undergraduate studies!