## Should I Apply for the Spring Semester (January)?

Many students are interested in joining American universities in January, that is, in the spring semester. But, there is a common misunderstanding that many universities do not accept students in the spring semester and that funding opportunities are also fewer. This, however, is not true. Almost 95% of American universities admit students for the spring semester.

Opportunities for financial assistance in spring are also as good as in fall. Of course, in some universities, a few courses are offered only in the fall semester, so students who join in spring cannot take them. However, with regard to financial aid, most universities offer Research and Teaching Assistantships, tuition waivers etc. only to students who have completed one semester, with a very good GPA (Grade Point Average). Hence, whether you join in the fall or spring semester does not really make a difference.

## What is the Best Time to Apply for the Spring Semester?

The best time to apply for the spring semester is around June or July of the previous year, which is fast approaching. Of course, many universities accept applications in August and even in September, but if you want admission to a good university, it is better to apply before July of the previous year. Submitting your application early will also help you to get your I-20 early and thus you will be able to apply for a visa by October or November, or at least in early December.

We strongly recommend that you write the GRE and TOEFL before the 15th July so that it will be possible for you to submit all your online applications and courier the necessary documents before 25th July.

## Quantitative Comparison Questions: Doubtful D!

~ by our Maths Faculty

Now, here’s a tip about the weird GRE question type called Quantitative Comparison or simply QC. As we know, in QC questions there are two columns, ‘A’ and ‘B’, containing some quantities. Our job is to evaluate the quantities and compare their magnitudes. In QC questions, the options are always as follows:

(A) Quantity under Column A is GREATER THAN quantity under Column B

(B) Quantity under Column A is LESS THAN quantity under Column B

(C) Quantity under Column A is EQUAL TO quantity under Column B

## Important Alert: the F-1 Visa Process has Changed

The new visa process announced by the US Consulate in September 2012 is completely new. Everything has changed right from payment of the visa fees to scheduling a date at the consulate. The following steps are involved.

1. filling in the DS 160 form
2. paying the visa fees
3. scheduling appointments for:
1. submitting biometric data and documents at the Offsite Facilitation Centre and
2. the Visa Interview

1. Online Filling of the DS 160 Form

The first step is to fill the DS 160 form online. Filling the form generates a CONFIRMATION NUMBER. You will require this number to print the ‘Receipt of Payment’ (which, in this case, is printed out before you make any payment!) since it contains the CGI reference number that is required if you are going to pay the visa fees in cash.

## The Importance of Data Sufficiency Questions in GMAT

~ by our Maths Faculty

My opening GMAT blog post will focus on Data Sufficiency, an important and unique Quantitative Reasoning question type in GMAT. Later on we’ll take up some sample questions to illustrate how to tackle this strange and interesting question type but first we will look at a fundamental point: why is DS important? Well, look at Figure 1 below

Figure 1

What this pie chart tells us is that, out of 37 questions in the GMAT Quantitative Reasoning section, you can expect around 22 to 23 will be of the Problem Solving (PS) type and 14 to 15 of the Data Sufficiency (DS) type.

## Did You Know these Facts about GRE Math?

~ By our Quantitative Reasoning Faculty

April is almost over and the countdown to the exam has already begun. You want a good overall score and if you’re an engineer, you are most probably thinking that getting 165 on Quant shouldn’t be too much of a problem (the typical engineer approaches maths questions with a raw “Just bring ‘em on” kind of arrogance and usually gets most questions right). But here’s the problem: sometimes even those with a strong background in maths may not cross the 160 mark – and when that happens, dreams of a score in the 325+ range come crashing down. To prevent that unhappy outcome, here are some basic insights about the way the math works on GRE.

## Green Card: Proposed Merit System, a Boon for Indians Studying in American Universities

One of the most greatly desired documents for Indians in America are the permanent residency permits known as green cards. Till now the process of getting one has been long, difficult and chancy. “The process is a nightmare,” said Anju Singh, a researcher with the National Institutes of Health, who was born in India and studied and worked in the U.S. for nearly a decade before she pursued the coveted green card. But, if Republican lawmakers have their way, that is about to change.

This is good news for all those in the long wait for the magic card – and it is especially good news for Indian students who have graduated (or are going to graduate) from American universities. Until 2013, green cards were allotted through a lottery system to 50,000 randomly selected applicants. The problem that Republican lawmakers had with the lottery system was that it did not distinguish between skilled and unskilled immigrants. They hope therefore, to replace it by a merit system in 2017. The new points system that they propose awards points largely according to applicants’ qualifications and so, it is designed to favor highly skilled applicants – which means that it will be an advantage for the hundreds of Indian students who graduate from American universities every year. So, if you are one of the many Indian faces on a US university campus, once the law goes through, you may not need to persuade an American employer to sponsor you for a green card. There is a strong chance that you will be able to get one on your own merit. Here’s how the proposed system will work. In the new system, an immigrant applicant can get a theoretical maximum of 100 points on the basis of the following ten criteria.

## University Selection for MS in US!

We present you the definitive guide to University Selection for MS in US. One of the most difficult and important parts of the whole process of applying to American universities is deciding which ones to apply to. And considering the large number of good universities and the wide variety of courses available, selecting the right universities is a difficult exercise. So, here are a few pointers to help you on your way.

## Application Timeline for Fall 2014 – Make Sure You Are on Track | MS in US | Fall 2014

If you are applying for fall 2014 the clock has begun to tick. So, don’t delay. Review this Application Timeline for Fall 2014 immediately and get to work. Here it is:

June-August 2013 – Review you goals for MS education and choose some specific areas in which you would like to specialize.

## MS in the US: What You Need to Know about Educational Loans

A college loan covers cost of tuition, living costs and insurance, flight costs, and other incidentals. Given the wide variety of choices available today, by putting in some effort, it is possible to find the best deal for your needs. Taking an education loan is also a smart move as you don’t need to break your savings and you get hefty tax benefits.