Your plans to fly abroad for higher education should start well before a year. There are number of procedures and documentation that should be completed before getting approval of admission from any university or college. You must understand each and every phase of application process carefully and take steps to get through them successfully. All this should be done with out any negative impact on your ongoing studies. Here are a few useful tips that help your application process run smoothly.
1. First of all, you must short list universities or colleges that you would like to apply. Going through the websites of individual universities will help you in this process.
2. Thoroughly check details of the course you want to pursue. This include understanding the course content, papers offered, credits, faculty and over all quality of the program.
3. You could follow the Times Higher Education - QS World University Ranking to know the status and rating of an institute. You can also search for category wise rankings like faculty, infrastructure, laboratories, research opportunities etc.
4. Search for scholarships / studentships offered for various courses at particular university or college. Also be aware of the scores required in GRE / TOEFL / IELTS to get funding from various foundations.
5. Faculty has always been helpful in your efforts. Speak to the faculty concerned to make your application more interesting.
6. GRE / TOEFL or IELTS is an essential requirement for the US, the UK, Canada and Australia. However, some courses / universities offer exemptions to these if a student has had English as the first language in previous courses.
7. A statement of purpose is normally needed to apply for any institution. Ensure it looks original and convincing.
8. Make up your mind on the affordability of the program. If you do not get any scholarship, you can postpone admission by a year. You can contact and request the university concerned in this regard.
9. Visit official organisations and help centers to get authentic information about universities and courses. Offices of the British Council (for the UK), USIEF (for the US) and IDP Education (for Australia) will help you a lot in providing specific information. They have offices in major cities and you can also contact them through mail or phone.
10. You must al least one year ahead of the date of admission. Understand the timings and deadlines for admissions in concerned universities and proceed with gathering required documentation.