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  1. Studying in America: American System of Education Presented by Richard Kaburente INFORMATION RESOURCE CENTER AMERICAN EMBASSY KIGALI E-mail:

  2. Why study in American Universities? Here are some few of the reasons why more than 600.000 international students from around the world are furthering their education in American Universities. 1. The quality of their facilities, resources and faculty. 2. The possibility of choosing the subjects in which you can specialized. 3. The flexibility in choice of courses within Colleges or Universities. There is an option for students to move between one College and another.

  3. Colleges, Universities, Institutes Distinction Degree – granting institutions in the United – States can be called by any of these terms. * Colleges tend to be smaller and usually offer only undergraduate degrees. *Universities offer also Graduate degrees. * Institutes are usually specialized in degree programs in a group of closely related subject areas.

  4. Bachelor’s degree and Associate degree Abachelor degree takes 4 years to complete An associate degree takes 2 years to complete. It may be Terminal Program or Transfer Program.

  5. Community Colleges They are community – based institution with closed links to local secondary schools, community groups. They provide 2 year associate degree programs usually called the Associate of Arts (A.A) or Associate of Science (A.S) as well as excellent Technical and Vocational Programs. They are very attractive (40% of the U.S. undergraduate students can be found in the classrooms of these Colleges. Are highly cost effective The TOEFL requirement is often lower Useful website: Community College Information and Links – Listed by State

  6. Technical and Vocational Colleges They specialized in preparing students for entry into the world of work. They offer certificate and other short – term programs that train students in how to work with the technology.

  7. DISTANCE EDUCATION It is an increasingly popular way to study for everything from a short professional course to a graduate degree in the United – States. Students no longer attend classes in a classroom on a campus. Classes are delivered from a distance through the use of technologies such as the Internet, video conferencing. Some Online College Guides,,

  8. Non – degree study at a U.S. College Non – degree study at a U.S. College If you want to study in the United – States or experience life on a campus while improving your knowledge of certain subjects, you should write to colleges, explain your situation and request information on applying for Special student or Non – degree student status.

  9. The Credit system Each individual course you take earns a specific number (usually three or four) of credits. It usually takes between 130 and 180 credits to graduate. Degree Courses The individual courses that make up the degree program can be divided into the following types: Core Courses: required of all students. Students take a variety of courses in Mathematics, English, Humanities, Physics Sciences and Social Sciences Major Courses: the subject in which a student chooses to concentrate Minor Courses: the subject in which a student may choose to take the second greatest concentration of course. Elective Courses: They offer opportunity to explore other topics or subjects you may interested in and help make up the total number of credits required to graduate.

  10. American school Grading scale The following is general percentage – letter grade scale for classes taken at American Universities: 100 – 90% = A 89 –80 %= B 69 – 60% =D 59 – 50% =E 49 – 0% =F

  11. What is a GPA ? GPA stands for Grade Average Point. A cumulative grade point average is the GPA for all courses taken throughout the degree program. Most universities use a GPA scale of 4.0 but few universities use a G PA scale of 5.0. To work out your GPA, take numerical value assigned to the letter grade you achieve for each course (typically 4 points for an A, 3 points for a B and son on), then multiply this number by number of credits of credits each course is worth. Finally, add these numbers together and divide by the total number of credits for all courses.

  12. For example: TOTAL 9 27 27 divided by 9 = 3.0 GPA

  13. Accreditation and Admission It is important to ensure or verify the accreditation of a University in which you are interested.  To confirm the accreditation of any US University, go to, click on databases and directories, click to agree to terms, and then enter the name of the school in the spaces indicated. To apply to a U.S bachelor’s degree program, you must have a secondary school diploma or examination results from your home country.  You must be at least 17 years of age.  *Many, but no all, colleges or Universities require international applicants to take an admission test such as TOEFL, SAT, ACT Most of the time the admission begins in March or April Here is a list of colleges and universities that don’t consider the use of standardized tests.

  14. TUITION AND FEES *Tuition is the cost of instruction *Fees are charged for services such as the Library, student activities, or the health care.

  15. Useful websites