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    I'm British and have only just started thinking of studying at an American university. It seems so complicated! I looked on the Fulbright commission and it says there are merit scholarships for those who have strong academic performance - I'm currently doing my A/S levels and have been predicted 4 As then will try and grab onto as many A* as possible the year after that for my A-levels! When and how do I actually get hold of a scholarship?

    Then there are the admissions tests – ACT and SAT.Where do I even go to take these?! Which isbetter if I want to study psychology?Docertain universities require different ones?I tried looking on Yale’s website as an example but their website isn’tvery clear.

    I’m also confused about the entry requirements – Yale doesn’tseem to say the minimum grades required to study psychology.

    They also seem to place a lot of emphasis on extracurriculars. Does this mean doing something psychologyrelated like attending lectures and doing work experience; do they like sportstoo?





    Can someone just give me steps on how to find out about their grades and entryrequirements, somehow get a scholarship, apply with the admissions tests, givemy transcript, get an interview etc?Seriously don’t have a clue, thanks!

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    I studied my undergrad in Boston, so here it goes:




    1. Merit schoarships come with a letter of offer; it's something each school uses to attract you to their school at the point of making an offer, and it's not something you can ask for. They'll give it to you if they like you. You won't be eligible for FAFSA (student loans) in the US of course - so this will play a huge factor for your financial decisions, especially for the fact that you'll pay international fee at the state universities.


    2. ACT and SATs are both admission tests but with different styles. SAT tends to test your innate ability, whereas ACT is more math & science heavy + tests the depth of your knowledge. Universities nowadays usually accept both, but just in case research each uni if they accept only one of the two or both. As for where to take them, when to take them, and the differences b/w the two - visit this website: http://www.ueslondon.co.uk/london_SAT_dates


    3. As for the minimum grades...there isn't one as such for many American universities. They put a heavy emphasis on entrance exams (ACT/SAT) and your extracurriculars, as well as your personal statement. So nail that ACT/SAT.


    4. Extracurriculars - they want to see leadership qualities and well-roundedness. Whatever you have, throw it in the personal statement to sell yourself as a diverse, dynamic individual. Btw, they really like seeing sports and music on you.


    5. They usually don't interview.
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    Dmshan summed it up great. As an American soon-to-be-university-frehsman, I can give you a few pointers as well.
    The ACT is all about learning the test!!! The first time that I took it, I got a 26... The fourth time I took it, I got a 30. The reason being, I did lots of ACT preps offered at my school and a local university. The only subject that I might have learned any information for was math, and that was very little. The only subject that you really don't need to know anything for is science because it is similar to taking an open-book test. If there are any prep courses offered near you or online, TAKE THEM and the practice tests! I promise it will help!
    Merit aid was super easy for me to get because of my high scores and class rank/gpa, so the higher your grades and test scores are, the more $$$ you're going to get! I'm going to be interviewing for a highly competitive scholarship that will cover nearly all of the costs at one of my state's public colleges, so look for colleges with great merit aid and the availability for international students. And have a great resume with community service, job experience, clubs, sports, etc. for the more competitive scholarships.
    Don't be afraid to call or email the uni for help! They are not scary people at all and will answer any question you have! Just be professional in your conversations.
    You have to apply to multiple types of schools. I've applied to public, private, and Christian private schools, and you will get different merit scholarships from each. Also, if you are looking at Ivies, apply to some really good public schools like Michigan, Indiana, Virginia, or California. These are really great schools and good backups if you don't get into the Ivies. Also look into some lib arts schools like Williams. There are so many amazing universities in the US that it's mind boggling. And to be honest, it doesn't matter if you get your degree at Harvard or at a small state school in the Midwest. A student with outstanding grades and extracurriculars at the small state school will definitely be more appealing than a student who barely passed Harvard.
    I wish you good luck and just have confidence in your abilities!
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    The other thing to note, aside from what earlier posters have quite accurately said, is that you apply to the university, not the course. Whereas in England you choose 5 courses (all of which could be at the same uni, if you wanted), you don't apply to US universities with a subject in mind. This is why they place so much emphasis on extracurriculars - because you'll be getting a broad education, with classes in multiple subjects, even ones that aren't related to your degree, they don't really care about how good a Psychology student you are. They want to know how good a student you are full stop. It's all about being rounded, not being specialised. It's virtually irrelevant that you want to study Psychology, which is why they don't list minimum grades. It's a four year course, so not until the third/fourth year will you start to specialise and choose your major. The first two years are much broader in the liberal arts.

    Seriously, look on the Fulbright website. It has a huge amount of information, just read it through carefully. The process and requirements are nothing like in the UK.
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    Thanks you lot, you actually really helped ^^^ you can all have a rep!
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    i recommend that u bring a bullet-proof vest with u (esp. if ur black)
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    (Original post by snoop_frog)
    i recommend that u bring a bullet-proof vest with u (esp. if ur black)
    The likelihood of something happening to her is pretty slim. It is important to note, however, that you should look at the crime statistics of the city/town you will be living in and the university. And as a general rule of thumb, don't go out by yourself after dark and stay away from unlit streets, alleys, etc.. Buddy System! Even in a city like STL or Memphis, which are known for their crime rates, you will be safe! I have been to STL many times and have never for once felt unsafe there. Just know what parts of the town to avoid and you will be fine!
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    (Original post by MarchingBand2015)
    The likelihood of something happening to her is pretty slim. It is important to note, however, that you should look at the crime statistics of the city/town you will be living in and the university. And as a general rule of thumb, don't go out by yourself after dark and stay away from unlit streets, alleys, etc.. Buddy System! Even in a city like STL or Memphis, which are known for their crime rates, you will be safe! I have been to STL many times and have never for once felt unsafe there. Just know what parts of the town to avoid and you will be fine!
    Oh yeah, good point, don't want go applying for unis which are in Detroit or Compton or something! haha (if there are any universities there anyway)
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    Hi there!!

    I have like a billion questions so hoping somebody could help me out!!

    My Situation: I am an A2 student who just got rejected from Oxford for Economics. I am predicted 3A*s and my GCSEs were average (8A*s). I am looking to possibly reapply both to the UK and US (this year I only applied to the UK). Firstly, given i now have 8 months until it is application season, is this enough time to prepare for SATs as I here most people start very early. Secondly, I've been told its very unusual for somebody to go to a US university having taken a gap year, is there any truth in this? Finally, I am not very sporty/musical... I have decent extracurriculars (work experience/school societies/talks/job/volenteering)... would this be enough or would US Universities be looking for something on a larger scale?

    Thanks for you help!!
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    I think it all depends what you've done with your gap year. As long as you've done something useful or worthwhile I doubt that it would count against you. If you've worked for a year to save up money for volunteered or gone travelling or something then they could all actually help your application. I think it would only be a problem if you basically spent the year doing nothing because it would show that you're not that motivated.

    I also wouldn't worry about not being sporty or musical, a lot of people aren't. If you've participated in other extracurriculars like you say you have then you'll be fine and I wouldn't worry about it they just want well rounded students, you don't have to be an athlete or a star musician.

    Regarding the SAT, have a look at this link. There's loads of information on that website if you just move round it a bit. I'd also advise attending one of their undergraduate events if possible as they always have an information session on entrance exams and there's usually specialists there who will answer any questions you have.

    http://www.fulbright.org.uk/study-in...missions-tests
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    (Original post by ndhala)
    Hi there!!

    I have like a billion questions so hoping somebody could help me out!!

    My Situation: I am an A2 student who just got rejected from Oxford for Economics. I am predicted 3A*s and my GCSEs were average (8A*s). I am looking to possibly reapply both to the UK and US (this year I only applied to the UK). Firstly, given i now have 8 months until it is application season, is this enough time to prepare for SATs as I here most people start very early. Secondly, I've been told its very unusual for somebody to go to a US university having taken a gap year, is there any truth in this? Finally, I am not very sporty/musical... I have decent extracurriculars (work experience/school societies/talks/job/volenteering)... would this be enough or would US Universities be looking for something on a larger scale?

    Thanks for you help!!
    Sucks to hear you got rejected! To answer your question - no, its not uncommon for applicant that are applying for American universities to apply after a gap year. In fact, read this page on Harvard's website: https://college.harvard.edu/admissio...ld-i-take-time. So make use of your gap year and take the initiative do something productive.

    8 months is ample time to get all your testing done, expecially since you'll be done with school and will have a ton of free time! Take SAT II subject tests that are the equivalent of your a levels to make things easier for yourself as that way you won't need to study much as you'll already have covered most of he content in your a level classes. Look into taking the ACT in lieu of the SAT reasoning (I) test - many students prefer it over the SAT -> to decide which test suits you better go on the college board website and do the practice tests they have on there + google for an official SAT test and take it under timed/test conditions. Google for the Preparing for the ACT (2014-2015), take the official ACT test in there. Compare your scores and prepare for the one you are better at - to compare your scores, use this chart (http://www.act.org/solutions/college...mpare-act-sat/).

    Your extracurriculars are likely going to make or break your chances at competitive american universities as you've got good grades. I'd say the ECs you mentioned are decent but you do need to beef them up and demonstrate commitment to a few activities through awards, leadership positions etc. You don't need to take part in athletic/musical activites/clubs if that isn't where your interests lie! Just show the colleges that your very interested in what every it is that your interested in be it academic, debate etc. I seriously recommend you work on improving your ECs during your gap year - volunteer work perhaps? Enter competitions on your strongest subject? I dunno but just make sure your demonstrate your interests (I keep repeating myself, sorry) and you'll be fine in terms of ECs.

    Hope I helped!
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    Maya,
    In response to what another poster said , it is true that US unis are looking for well-rounded students. However, it is not true that they don't care about how well you've done in your degree-related courses. It helps the admissions team to see that you have a serious interest in the subject.

    The difference between US and UK admissions is big. On your essay for US unis you can talk about your degree-related extracurriculars that you have partaken in, if the prompt for the essay gives you reason to bring it up. The essay question differs from one uni to the next. One might ask you to address something specific, it might be a life experience that you have had, and another uni might have you talk about a topic of your choice.

    In regards to the classes you will take, the first two years you take a combination of classes for your field of study as well as courses in multiple other subjects collectively called General Education.

    In regards to extra curriculars, they are looking for something that you have invested some time in. I would not include attending lectures. Work/volunteer/internship experiences? do include.

    For the other areas you are inquiring about, you can find the information by going through the uni's website a few times - it's too much to absorb from just one reading. There should be a tab at the top of the page for Prospective Students outlining the admissions requirements. Under that heading should be a page for international students. You should start there.
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    For the most part you could take the SAT or ACT, or both and they will equally accept both.
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    (Original post by veronicaesm)
    For the most part you could take the SAT or ACT, or both and they will equally accept both.
    Yes, but only take one of them as its a waste of time to take both unless you're trying to figure out which you're better at.
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    (Original post by ndhala)
    Hi there!!

    I have like a billion questions so hoping somebody could help me out!!

    My Situation: I am an A2 student who just got rejected from Oxford for Economics. I am predicted 3A*s and my GCSEs were average (8A*s). I am looking to possibly reapply both to the UK and US (this year I only applied to the UK). Firstly, given i now have 8 months until it is application season, is this enough time to prepare for SATs as I here most people start very early. Secondly, I've been told its very unusual for somebody to go to a US university having taken a gap year, is there any truth in this? Finally, I am not very sporty/musical... I have decent extracurriculars (work experience/school societies/talks/job/volenteering)... would this be enough or would US Universities be looking for something on a larger scale?

    Thanks for you help!!
    Your description of "average" GCSEs are highly amusing, btw.

    8 months for the SATs is more than fine, I (stupidly) gave myself about three weeks and took it once, did okay. Gap years ARE unusual here, but unusual does not necessarily mean bad. There's not a huge benefit to just picking up a sport, because when it's said that universities favour athletes, they mean athletes that can play for them on a national level. University sports is kind of hugely important here. But things like so and so club, such and such society are of great use, but it's important that you can prove dedication to them as admissions people are not impressed by applicants that put 15 clubs down and seem to only have a fleeting interest in each of them. Good extracurriculars are ones that you can show dedication to, so if you can put little things about how you maybe lead discussions/organise meetings and things like that, it'd be great.
 
 
 
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