Master or PhD in the US

Before starting your application, it is important to consider why you want to study in the USA, and what you wish to achieve through your studies. The American education system offers two types of graduate diplomas: the Master’s degree and the PhD. In order to be accepted into a graduate program, you’ll need to have at least an American Bachelor’s degree or its equivalent from another country. A Master’s program is much more specialized than a Bachelor’s. There are approximately 1,500 educational institutions in the USA that offer a wide variety of Master’s programs in many different fields.

You will need to spend some time searching for the American university that suits you best. The application process in America is very different from that in the Netherlands. Remember that it will take time, money, and effort to complete your application for an American university. It is recommended to start preparing a full year before you intend to start your studies in the US.

The Fulbright Commission can assist you during this process. The following pages contain an overview of all the steps you need to take to successfully apply to a university. If you have any further questions about the information we offer, you can always ask our Educational Adviser.

Did you know…
  • …graduate programs are challenging and take up a lot of time. It’s not unusual to spend more than 40 hours working towards your degree as a full-time student. Students and teachers work closely together, and you are expected to actively participate during the classes.
  • …most Master’s programs in the US are two-year programs. Certain Master’s programs, like the LLM, only require one year.
  • …American PhD programs take four to six years to complete.
  • …many American universities have campuses outside the US. This means that you don’t have to study in America itself but still receive a degree from an American university. There is no official overview of all American universities with campuses abroad, but the Association of American International Colleges and Universities can give you a general idea of your options.