Overlooked Nuances Of Applying To International Universities

Applying abroad is a long and exhausting process. While we are busy handling the major paperwork and working to improve our test scores, we often overlook the nuances. Many a times they can make or break your chances of attending your dream school. We are here to demystify some of these common errors made by candidates in recent years so that you can avoid them.

Sort out your finances!

It is a commonly known fact that studying abroad will cost you a pretty penny. However, you must be careful about some details, especially if you are self-financing. For example, many universities do not accept any proof of required finances except your bank account or that of your sponsor. This means financial documents like your investment portfolio which include shares and mutual funds, 401k / pension fund, etc. will automatically get disqualified. Illiquid assets such as real estate also disqualify from proof of financing.

The Transcript vs Degree

Some universities accept transcripts, that is, your statement of marks attested by the university, while others will accept your final degree only. Many a time students mix the two as many university portals do not specify. It is best to gain clarity on this process early on by reading the particulars on the university website you are applying to or contacting the admissions coordinator at the earliest. Budget appropriate time during the application to get these documents from your universities. In our experience they can take up to 6 weeks from the date of application to be issued by your university.


This is not just networking in general, networking so as to include these interactions in your statement of purpose. These can include ex-students, industry experts from the university, and current faculty. Talk to them about their experiences, course experience, industry application, and career trajectory. An easy way to connect with them is on LinkedIn. Include the relevant aspects of your conversation in your application. Not only will this help your application stand out but tell the person reading your application how keen and thorough you are with their course and university. Take time to get to know the university since that will help you present your case in a stronger light. After all who doesn’t like a candidate who has put in great efforts to know the university community and show an inclination to be a part of their ecosystem.


Start applying for scholarships before your file your application. Contrary to belief, the deadline for many scholarships is way before you get your acceptance letter. Instead of waiting to figure out scholarships after you get your offer letter, it is better to apply way beforehand. Make a list of scholarships, deadlines, and requirements, while applying. Ideally, start looking at scholarships a year before you file your candidature. Also, make an active outreach effort to your university for scholarships that you maybe eligible for, most universities have an extensive database of scholarships that are classified by region, gender, ethnicity and work experience.