How to Apply for Best Civil Engineering Schools in USA
The application process requires a significant amount of time and needs to be prepared well. An early start holds true even if you are able to access electronic applications on the Internet. To get in Civil Engineering program, you need to work a lot and follow these applying directions:
Narrow down your list of Schools
Enlist all the schools providing civil engineering major and go through their website- know about the courses they are offering for civil engineering, whether ABET accredited or not, their admission and financial requirements. Then shortlist some best grad schools according to your preference list.
Remember, each school is different. Try to talk to students in various grade levels and ask them for their perspective of the school. Listen to what they have to say, but form your own opinion on what you like and dislike. Ask to sit in on a class. Try to imagine what it would be like to be a student there. Can you imagine yourself being happy there?
Often times, a college will give a visiting student a fee waiver. These can save you some money, plus visiting beforehand can help you decide whether or not you even want to bother applying. The official tour will likely steer you clear of the school's atmosphere. The official campus tour is worth your while.
Application Paper work
Most grad schools have online applications but know that some schools have specific requirements for the way applications are submitted.
Your application should include:
Statement of Purpose: Statement of Purpose gives you an opportunity to distinguish yourself beyond grades and test scores. The Statement of Purpose should be between one and two pages in length. You may choose to write about previous experiences, your personal and professional goals: Why this school? What might follow? What inspires you? What drives you? Etc.
Standardized Test scores: Take the Standardized Test like GRE (Graduate Record Examination), SAT (Scholastic Aptitude test) and SAT Subject Test preferably in Chemistry or science, ACT (American College Testing), and applicants who are not Americans are also required to take the TOEFL (Test of English as Foreign language) or IELTS. The scores of these standardized tests take an applicant’s application one step ahead.
Official Records: Education history i.e. official records will provide the information on your scholastic record for your undergraduate or graduate course work from previous colleges attended.
Letter of Reference: A reference letter is a detailed discussion, from a faculty member, of the personal qualities, skills, accomplishments, and experiences that make you unique and perfect for the programs to which you've applied. A letter of reference provides insights that cannot be gleaned by simply reviewing an applicant's score.
Extracurricular Involvement: Admission department at several Civil Engineering Universities are interested in a student's extracurricular activities -in other words, how you spend your time outside of classes. Colleges care about the character of the people they admit; therefore, what you do after school, during weekends and over summers tells them a lot about the kind of person you are. Getting involved in something is a great way of networking. Many people are able to discover their interests and values through getting involved in various activities different from a regular routine. Extracurricular activities are the major way students can demonstrate how unique you are, possibly more interesting.
Internships/ Practicum and Co-ops: Internships and Cooperative Education provide students with a great opportunity to acquire real-world experience while still in school. In addition to giving students direct experience in the field they are considering, interaction with others in the field can help provide perspective on career path options. Listing them adds weight to the application and also their future in the same field.
Essays/ Personal Statement: Essays are considered as a way to judge the applicants potential and skills. Admission Essays are also called as Personal Statements. A two-page personal statement (approximately 500 words) outlining your background, research interests, goals, and reasons for applying to the course and university is essential.
- Write what you think and speak. The purpose of the essay is to show the real you, what you think and what motivates you.
-Remember that what bores you pretty much bores others. So be original and creative.
-Nothing excites a reader more than writing that’s invigorating. When choosing your topics, pick what genuinely excites you. Your enthusiasm will show through.
-Use active verbs, simple and clear words and sentences.
Decide whether you want to apply with early admission
Early admission is a way of telling a school that you really want to go there. If you do apply early admission, you'll have a slightly higher chance of getting in. School use early admission to gauge who really wants to attend their school; many students who they accept eventually end up going somewhere else, a situation that is not ideal. Be sure you're comfortable with the school if you decide to apply early admission.
Once you have cleared the preliminary hurdles, are shortlisted, have evaded the numerous piles of the 'rejected' applications and have received an interview call, you feel ecstatic and there starts the rigorous interview preparation. It is the first meeting with of the applicant with the university and vice-versa. The university gets a feel of the personality behind the paperwork they have read and assessed so far. It is golden opportunity to put your best foot forward. The interview is important part of the admission procedure in Civil Engineering program.
- The interviewer expects the applicants to ask some questions about the school or the program. So, the applicant must prepare specific questions about the same.
- Practice before the actual interview happens. Sit down with one of your parents or a teacher and have him or her ask you questions. Answer them honestly and seriously. Then ask your "interviewer" how you came across.
-Be confident, clear and yourself.
After a go ahead from the interview, bid your goodbyes to old life, get set to living a life of your dreams!