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Why You Should be Applying to USA Universities During the COVID-19 Pandemic

COVID-19 has many people putting their plans on hold. But it shouldn’t stop you from applying to USA universities and starting your journey to earn an American degree.

Applying to USA universities during the COVID-19 pandemic

Now is the best time for international students to apply to USA universities despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Actually, the COVID-19 pandemic is the PERFECT time for you to apply to USA universities and begin your studies.

Hear us out. We have some pretty good reasons.

Waiving admission requirements

Many universities and colleges are waiving some of the admission requirements that have always been mandatory. One of those requirements is entrance exam scores. One example of an entrance exam required for admission to a master’s or PhD program is the GRE.

The GRE (graduate record exam) is a test that you need to take in-person and can cost anywhere from $150 (USD) – $250 (USD) depending on where you live. Many testing locations closed due to COVID-19, so many universities and colleges are waiving this requirement.

More convenient and less expensive English tests

Again, since many of the in-person testing centers closed due to COVID-19 many universities are easing up on which English proficiency test scores they will accept with international student applications.

International students have to take some kind of English proficiency test to show they have enough knowledge and use of the language to be successful during their studies.

Many universities are now accepting English test scores from online English tests, such as the one offered by Duolingo. You can take the Duolingo English Test anytime and anywhere since it’s completely online, you get your results within 48 hours, and it only costs $49 (USD). Other in-person English tests, such as TOEFL, cost over $200 (USD).

More online programs

Universities are quickly pivoting to offer more classes online and/or the option to complete a degree program entirely online.

This means you can still get admitted to a quality program and can start taking classes from the comfort of your home. You can complete your entire degree online, or at least start taking classes online and then come to the U.S. later to finish.

For example, The University of Arizona just launched its Global Campus, meaning international students can literally take classes almost anywhere in the world or complete their degrees online.

Did you know…

International Student Voice partners with U.S. colleges that offer programs where a student can complete their high school diploma while earning a university degree at the same time. AND it’s completely online! Register for an upcoming webinar to learn more or if one is not scheduled, schedule an appointment with a team member.

Defer your enrollment

Even if you’re not ready to begin a new degree program, you may be able to defer your enrollment to 2021.

This means you can take advantage of all the relaxed admission requirements right now, but still wait to begin your program next year. Who knows if the relaxed admission requirements will still be around next year or what the COVID-19 situation will be like. That is why you shouldn’t wait to apply!

More flexible deadlines

University and colleges are still adjusting to shifting classes online and shifting processes to a completely online format. Additionally, universities and colleges are forced to adjust because many U.S. embassies and consulates are closed due to COVID-19 and students are not able to conduct visa interviews yet.

Many universities and colleges have extended their application deadlines or accept applications year-round. Obviously, the sooner you apply the better depending on when you want to start. However, don’t assume that it’s too late. Deadlines are always shifting and even if you apply after a deadline, the university or college may still accept you anyway.


Just like any business, universities and colleges are facing some challenging times because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many institutions are predicting significant declines in the number of students enrolling for 2020-2021 and are working hard to still provide quality education programs virtually. During the COVID-19 pandemic, universities and colleges will probably be more flexible and willing to work with you.

International Student Voice can help you find the perfect online program and guide you through the application process. We can even provide resources for financing your education.

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