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Applying at the last minute to study abroad: Is it possible?

The application deadline for most international programs is just a days or a few weeks away and you just realized that your dream is to studying abroad in the US! Is it possible to fulfill your dream in a mere couple of weeks?

Still not sure what university is your best fit? Visit or download the GradTrain apps to try our university matching predictor! 

Tip 1. Timetable: Before anything else, build a calendar. You must maximize your valuable time in order to be successful in this rapid yet tedious process. Applying to graduate school in two weeks is possible, but requires a great degree of dedication to the process, without focusing on anything else. Create your timetable and ensure that you dedicate most of your time to it in order to achieve your application goals.

Tip 2. Prioritize: Be conscious about how much time you actually have to apply--there is a lot of information to learn and not so much time. Because you don’t have a great deal of time, it’s important to focus only on the information of utmost importance. When shuffling through university websites, aim your attention at the information that is most relevant to you. You also might want to focus on schools that might not require a GRE or GMAT test, if you haven’t take it. Signing up for and taking a GRE or GMAT test in only a few weeks is doable, but you may not receive the scores you’d hoped for, or may miss the deadline for application.
One of the first things you should do is figure out who you want letters of recommendation from and ask them immediately because the time restraint will affect them tremendously. It is proper to give your recommenders a few weeks notice so that they have enough time to craft a well-written letter that speaks to your strengths and captures your spirit and success.

Tip 3. Work on your resume and essay: Your resume and essays are a crucial component in your application, as they tell the university who you are and what you have done to get there. They’re one of the first parts of your application that the admissions committee will look at, therefore you’ll want to perfect them. When you’re done drafting them, have a native English speaker proofread and edit them with you. American universities prefer superior writing skills and proper grammar, and poor English can make you look bad and unprofessional.

Tip 4. Talk to the right people: Don’t ask everyone for advice. You don’t have time to listen to everyone’s opinion on why they think you can’t or shouldn’t apply to university abroad. You have better and more important things to focus on during these few weeks. You should get in contact with the international admissions counselor and speak to them about why you’re applying late and ask if they have any advice specific to that school. Also use GradTrain to talk to a mentor who studied at that school and may be able to give you the edge when applying to that school.

Tip 5. Focus: Buckle down. Find caffeinated coffee. Get good WiFi. Cancel your plans. Understand that you will have to devote all your time in these two weeks to your application, but, as you know, your dream is worth it. You will feel good at the end of the two weeks knowing that you gave the application your all.

Still not sure what university is your best fit? Visit or download the GradTrain apps to try our university matching predictor! 

Need more help with getting accepted, planning your studies, and the steps following graduation? Visit us at


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