List of Documents Required for Applying to US Universities

List of Documents Required for Applying to US Universities

List of Documents Required for Applying to US Universities
Rosmit GyawaliSun Dec 11 2022

Would you like to apply for a course in the US? Do you need clarification on which documents are required and which are not? Here is a comprehensive manual. 

First, a word of caution: only use knowledgeable individuals to list and prepare the documentation. 

These documents will determine your professional future, therefore, do not get advice from unreliable sources. Additionally, the needed financial paperwork must be accurate and of the utmost importance.

The following information on the documents is necessary for studying abroad:


This is the most crucial document that you need to study abroad. If you still require one, kindly apply well in advance. 

Prepare your admissions exams in advance of your scheduled dates. You should also have extra copies of the first and last pages of the passport available.

Verify that your passport expiration date is at least six months away.

Curriculum Vitae/Resume

Your objective, educational background, any internships or work experience, milestone scores (10th and 12th final aggregates), projects completed during your undergraduate program (as well as during internships or full-time employment), and mention of co-curricular and extracurricular activities will all be included in this.


One of the most important documents needed to apply for an MS in the US is transcripts from US universities. A transcript is one document that a school issues.

It includes a summary of all the information you need to know about the undergraduate courses you took as well as the scorecard of the concerned student. 

Students who are applying during their senior year must have all of their test results.

For instance, the transcript for engineering students should include information for semesters 1 through 6. 

For applicants who plan to continue their education after receiving a bachelor's degree, the transcript should have all of their grades from those years.

Pass certificates and grade reports

Additionally, students must present copies of their pertinent grade reports and diplomas. For instance, Indian students pursuing master's degrees must submit their 10th and 12th-grade transcripts and grades for each semester. 

Each application needs at least one set of copies, sometimes two. Each copy needs to be attested.

Letters of Recommendation

Letters of Recommendation are among the most vital records needed while applying to undergraduate and graduate programs at US colleges (LOR).

A LOR must be provided by your lecturers or managers and should outline your abilities, successes, and professional or academic background. It is typical to get three or more recommendations.

Most colleges (particularly for Master's program applications) ask for hard copies of the letters of recommendation, although others prefer that recommenders email them directly to the graduate admissions department.

The LOR's content must be printed on the organisation's header paper and sealed within an official envelope with a seal bearing the organisation's stamp and a signatory's signature. This indicates that the applicant was not aware of the letters' confidentiality.

Scorecards for entrance exams

Applicants must complete specified entrance exams to be accepted into American institutions. Verify the program for which you are applying and have your score available before applying to the colleges and universities of your choice.

Several significant admission tests include:

  • SAT: For applicants to undergraduate programs at almost all American universities, SAT scores are accepted.
  • Another crucial exam when applying to undergraduate institutions in the USA is the ACT.
  • The GRE is required for most MS-level programs in the United States, including business management.
  • GMAT: It's a requirement for entry into American business schools.
  • Students interested in medical school in the US must take the MCAT exam.

Purpose Statement

A Statement of Purpose may or may not need to be submitted online by applicants. Please make sure it is printed on high-quality paper and contains a header with your name, UserID, and the program you want to apply for if it needs to be sent by courier. 

The university website will note the preferred spacing and standard font size.

Scores on the English proficiency test

English language competency test results are also required of students from non-native English-speaking nations. 

This is crucial because you'll be studying English in the US, and universities need to ensure that won't be a problem. The TOEFL and IELTS are the two most well-liked of these exams.

Scores from the GRE, GMAT, SAT, TOEFL, and IELTS must be submitted electronically to colleges via the ETS website. In addition, one can save a few copies of the scores for storage.

Work Experience Letters

Make sure to include your experience letters from the relevant organisations if you have interned or worked there.

Copy of the application confirmation

You will reach a confirmation page and receive a confirmation email after submitting your application and paying the university's online fee. 

Each of the two must be supplied with a copy. Certified copies of awards, participation, volunteerism, technical papers, and publications that have been published.


Students may be required to submit an essay along with their application at many US universities. 

The essay could be about a haphazard subject or one that shows the applicant's enthusiasm for the program or field. Most colleges require one to three of these essays.

Evidence of Funds

Proof of finances is a crucial document required for studying in the US. Universities need this information to analyse your financial capability and determine whether you qualify for financial aid or scholarships. 

Some universities request a bank statement declaration for this reason. A note from the bank stating your savings is required for this. Your bank will issue this statement, and that bank must also attest copies.

Sending a loan letter with this is optional. You do not need to inform the colleges that you are requesting a student loan.

Description of the research proposal, portfolio, or project

For more specialised and research-based programs, universities may also ask candidates for research proposals, portfolios, or project summaries.

For research-based programs like PhD and post-doctoral degrees, research proposals are necessary.

A project description is one of the documents required for Master's degrees, including research in the USA. Typically, these programs require students to write a thesis.

Candidates must submit portfolios for master's programs in the arts, design, and architecture. This helps the relevant college or university evaluate your knowledge of and likelihood for success in your field of study.

Extracurricular Activity Certificates

Include any essential certificates that prove your claim that you do exceptionally in extracurricular activities. 

This may increase the general appeal of your application to prestigious institutions and universities.

These are the only relevant documents that must be included in your application packet. In a green stitched cover, make sure they are arranged nicely. 

University-specific courier requirements could differ. Check the website's list twice before sending any extraneous documents.

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