Study Postgraduate AbroadStudy Postgraduate Abroad

Study postgraduate abroad offers an amazing opportunity to gain international exposure, experience new cultures, enhance your skills, and add value to your resume. However, choosing where to study abroad at the postgraduate level requires careful consideration of various factors. This comprehensive guide covers everything you need to know as an international student planning to pursue postgraduation abroad.

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An increasing number of students are opting to study abroad at the postgraduate level. With top universities across the globe offering a wide range of specialized programs, studying postgraduation abroad can provide you with access to cutting-edge research, acclaimed faculty, enhanced career prospects and an unforgettable life experience.

When researching your study abroad options, you need to look at academic qualifications, standardized test requirements, language proficiency needs, scholarships available and visa requirements for different countries. You also need to research the top study destinations for postgraduation based on factors like quality of education, cost of living, post-study work opportunities, and lifestyle.

This guide will walk you through the key steps involved in studying postgraduation abroad as an international student.

Eligibility Criteria for Postgraduate Study Abroad

The eligibility criteria for postgraduate study varies by country and university. However, some common requirements include:

Academic Qualifications

  • You generally need to have completed an undergraduate bachelor’s degree in a relevant subject area. Some programs may require you to have majored in a specific domain.
  • Your grades and academic transcripts will be evaluated to assess your subject knowledge and analytical skills. A strong academic profile can help secure admittance and funding at top universities.

Standardized Test Scores

  • Tests like GRE, GMAT, LSAT may be required for admission into postgraduate programs in countries like the USA, Canada and Singapore.
  • English language proficiency exams like IELTS and TOEFL are usually needed for non-native speakers. Some countries and universities have specific score requirements.

Work Experience

  • Relevant work experience in your field can strengthen your application and help you adapt to advanced study abroad. Some programs mandate a few years of work experience for admission eligibility.
  • Internships and voluntary work also demonstrate interest and engagement in your chosen field of study.

Duration of Postgraduate Programs Abroad

The duration of postgraduate degree programs abroad depends on the country and type of program you choose. Some general timelines are:

  • A master’s degree typically takes 1-2 years to complete in most countries.
  • 1 year master’s programs are concentrated and intensive. 2 years provides more flexibility.
  • MBA programs range from 1-2 years in duration. Accelerated 1 year MBA programs are quite intensive.
  • PhD programs usually require 3-5 years of study and research for completion.
  • In countries like USA and Canada, the time required is specified in terms of credits. About 30 credits are required for a master’s and 90 credits for an MBA.
  • In the UK, master’s degrees take about 1 year. A PhD takes 3 years and an integrated PhD takes 4 years.

So when shortlisting your study abroad options, check the program duration offered by specific universities to plan your timeline and funding requirement.

Scholarships Available for International Students

Scholarships make studying abroad more affordable. Here are some key scholarship types and top providers for international students:

Merit-based Scholarships

These are awarded for outstanding academic achievement. Criteria is based on grades, test scores, publications and recommendations.

Need-based Scholarships

These provide funding based on your financial situation. You need to demonstrate that you require financial assistance.

Diversity Scholarships

Awarded to candidates from underrepresented groups and disadvantaged backgrounds. Aims to increase access and inclusion.

Destination-specific Scholarships

Offered by government, universities and external funding bodies in specific destination countries for their international students.

Top Providers

  • Government agencies like Fulbright Program (USA), Chevening Scholarship (UK), DAAD (Germany)
  • University funding and endowments like Stanford Knight-HennessyHarvard Financial Aid
  • External organizations like ** Gates Cambridge**, Rhodes ScholarshipErasmus Mundus Joint Master’s Degrees
  • Country-specific student loans by funding bodies like Sweden’s CSNNorway’s LĂ„nekassen.
  • Discipline-specific scholarship programs in fields like business, engineering, arts, humanities.
  • Employer sponsorships where they fund your study costs in return for a future work commitment.

Top Destinations for Postgraduate Study Abroad

Here are some of the most popular and high-quality destinations for international students to pursue postgraduation:

United States

The US offers a wide range of postgraduate programs at globally top-ranked universities like MIT, Stanford, Harvard, Columbia, Yale, UC Berkeley and more. It is the top destination for international students due to academic excellence, research facilities, funding opportunities and post-study work visa options.

United Kingdom

The UK is home to prestigious universities like Oxford, Cambridge, Imperial College London, UCL and more. It offers cutting-edge research, 1 year master’s degrees, multicultural exposure and better post-study work opportunities through the Graduate Route visa.


Canada provides a high-quality education system with focus on research, practical learning and real-world skills. It has a welcoming environment for international students. It offers affordable tuition fees and post-study work permit options.


Germany has a strong reputation for research and offers a wide range of English-taught degree options. It has a open and high-quality education system with minimal or no tuition fees at public universities along with excellent research infrastructure.


Australia provides globally recognized qualifications, multicultural society and a great student experience. It offers the opportunity to work for up to 4 years after graduation and apply for permanent residency.

Visa Application Process for Postgraduation Abroad

To study postgraduation in another country, you will need to apply for a student visa.

Here are some key steps:

  • Research visa requirements – Each country has specific student visa rules regarding documents, fees, health checks and funds required.
  • Obtain acceptance letter – A valid letter of acceptance from your university is crucial for the student visa application.
  • Prepare documentation – This includes your passport, letters, transcripts, resume, statement of purpose, evidence of funds, health certificates.
  • Submit visa application – Submit your completed application form and supporting documents to the relevant visa office or embassy.
  • Attend visa interview – You may need to attend an in-person or online visa interview to assess your credentials and intent.
  • Get health examinations – You will need to undergo a general health check-up and specific tests like TB screening.
  • Purchase insurance – You need to buy mandatory medical insurance with specific cover before you can collect your visa.
  • Collect visa – If approved, your passport with visa will be stamped and returned to you. Review all your visa details.
  • Travel and register – Enter the country on or before the visa validity date. Finish any registration formalities required after arrival.


Studying postgraduation abroad opens up a world of exciting opportunities to accelerate your personal and professional growth. With meticulous planning, strong academics, timely preparation and focus on your goals, you can gain admission into the best universities and funding programs across the globe. Research all aspects in detail, choose a destination that aligns with your interests and FUTURE22 career ambitions, and apply to programs that can serve as a springboard for your aspirations.

ParameterKey Points
Academic EligibilityUndergraduate degree completion, Grades/GPA, Relevant academic background
Standardized TestsGRE, GMAT, IELTS,TOEFL – vary by program and country
Work ExperienceRelevant research, internships, volunteering
Program DurationMaster’s: 1-2 years, MBA: 1-2 years, PhD: 3-5 years
ScholarshipsMerit-based, Need-based, Diversity, Destination, University, External
Top DestinationsUSA, UK, Canada, Germany, Australia, France, New Zealand, Spain, Ireland, Japan
Visa ProcessResearch requirements, Obtain acceptance letter, Submit documentation, Interview, Health checks, Insurance, Collect visa

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