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Eligibility of MS in USA for Indian Students- GRE Score, Documents, and More

Updated on 01 February, 2024

Akansha Semwal

Akansha Semwal

Study Abroad Expert

Master in Science (MS) is a two-year course for graduates in the United States of America (USA), especially for those with undergraduate degrees in science or related fields. To check the eligibility for MS in the USA for Indian students, they would need to narrow the criteria across universities and institutions. MS in the US primarily encompasses STEM courses (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Management) programs. STEM students get an opportunity to fully realize the benefits of an Optional Practical Training (OPT) program. 

In the US, the tuition fee for an MS degree varies as it depends on the credit hour of the course in tandem with the type of university (i.e., public or private university). Moreover, the minimum credit hours of an MS program is 30 hours. 

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Students should be cognizant of the average cost of a master’s degree in the US, between $30,000 and $120,000, excluding the application cost, which can range from $50 to $100. However, online applications can be cheaper or more accessible. However, the tuition fee might differ based on the institution and the specialization chosen by the student.

Moreover, students applying to US universities should have 16 years of education, in tandem with an average GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale and above. Also, the student needs to fulfil TOEFL/IELTS/ Duolingo score requirement. They can look for universities that accept applications on an ongoing basis, whereas most universities offer an early deadline. The early closing is usually December to January, and a regular deadline is usually March to April. The article encapsulates how to apply for MS in the USA from India and more.

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The USA hosts the largest number of international students from across the world. Over the past few years, it has become one of the most popular destinations for studying abroad. Reasons such as best-ranked institutions, excellent support facilities, flexible academic environment, and cultural diversity contribute to making it the most preferred destination amongst students planning to study abroad.

Eligibility for MS in the USA for Indian students – Mandatory Criteria 

Regarding eligibility for MS in the USA, there are some mandatory requirements that students should keep in mind. They include the following: 

  • A three or four-year undergraduate (UG) degree in a relevant academic discipline. This is part of the non-negotiable criteria for MS in the USA. Students need not always have a Bachelor of Science qualification to apply for MS programs
  • A student’s average GPA should be 3.0, equal to 65-70% or should have secured a higher percentage in their UG degree
  • They should provide proof of English language proficiency (tests like IELTS, TOEFL, or PTE)
  • GRE score should be a minimum of 290 or more

Students can improve their chances of getting selected by submitting details of research projects/internships, published research papers, and proof of participation in leadership, social, or community initiatives.

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Document Requirements For Admission in MS in USA

Once a student checks MS eligibility in the USA, several documents are expected to be presented for applying to MS programs in the USA. Here’s taking a closer look at the same: 

  • TRF of English language proficiency tests like TOEFL or IELTS
  • Results of standardized examinations such as GRE or GMAT
  • Two to three LORs (Letters of Recommendation)
  • Statement of Purpose (SOP) or Application Essay, whichever is necessary
  • Resume or CV, if needed
  • Official transcripts of their academic scores and mark sheets, including Classes X, XII, and their Bachelor’s degree
  • Work experience certificates and documents, if needed
  • Photocopies of passport/ID
  • Photographs in the requisite size
  • Declaration for any added curricular participation and other information mentioned in the application form
  • WES Evaluation records, if needed

Documents Required for US Student Visa

Here are the documents that you will need for the student visa: 

  • An international passport that is valid for at least 6 months after the completion date of the course in the USA. 
  • Acceptance at SEVP-approved institution and the I-20 Form. 
  • Receipt of SEVIS application fee payment. 
  • Non-immigrant visa application and DS-160 Form confirmation page. 
  • Photograph in the required size and format. 
  • Proof of funds for supporting tuition and living costs throughout your stay in the USA. You may have to provide your bank statements, details of scholarships received, and financial undertaking by your sponsor for meeting living and accommodation expenditures, etc. 
  • You will have to ensure that you leave the USA after completing your course. This can be provided through a return air ticket to your home country. 
  • You may also have to provide copies of your academic certificates, degrees, and diplomas if required by the authorities. 

After completing the document submission procedure, you will have to proceed with the visa interview on the scheduled date. Make sure that you start preparing your application and visa documents well in advance. Check all the respective application dates carefully. 

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MS Application Cycle

Autumn/Fall Intake: Applications open in late September or early October and are accepted till December second week. 

Spring Intake: The application deadline for the spring intake usually hovers between mid-November to mid-December. 

Summer Intake: The application deadline for the intake is somewhere in April. 

MS Admission Cycle 

Fall Intake: Classes begin in mid-August or early September and go on till the beginning of December. 

Spring Intake: The session begins in January and concludes in April.

Summer Intake: The session starts in May and ends in August.

Exams for MS in the USA

When applying for MS in the USA for Indian students, it is indispensable for them to take specific exams as proof of language proficiency and academic evaluation to receive admittance from the USA universities. These encompass academic admissions evaluations to US universities at UG and PG levels. So, it is vital that a student should clear the GRE/GMAT/LSAT/MCAT. 

List of USA Universities Accepting GRE Scores for MS 

Universities in the USA accept scores ranging from 155 to 167. The score range applies to both GRE quant and verbal. In India, the cost of the GRE general test would be $213. Moreover, the GRE Subject Test would cost a student $150. 

Popular Universities Accepting GRE Scores 

Top UniversitiesGRE Scores Required
Stanford University328
Carnegie Mellon University316
University of Texas Austin314 (range 303-333)
Yale University322
University of ChicagoQuantitative – 154 to 170|Verbal – 152 to 170 

Source: University’s Official Website


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Disclaimer! All course fees and salaries are approximate amounts subject to change depending on various conditions.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How long is a master’s degree in the USA?

It takes around 2 years to complete a master’s degree in the USA if a student is learning full-time.




How much does it cost to do a master’s degree in the USA?

Completing a master’s in the USA for an Indian student would cost $30,000 and $120,000, excluding the application cost. Furthermore, the application cost would range from $50 to $100, though online applications can be cheaper or more accessible.

Which master’s degree is most in-demand in the USA?

The number of international students opting to study in the USA is inflating. Most in-demand master’s degree is as follows; MS in Data Science, MS in Computer Science, MS in Business Analytics, MS in Data Analytics, MS in Information Systems, and MS in Computing (Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning).

Is job experience compulsory for MS in the USA?

It is not compulsory to have a job experience when a student decides to apply for MS in the USA. After finishing their bachelor’s, they are eligible to apply for a master’s degree.

What are the GRE and TOEFL score requirements for top US universities?

When scouring for the eligibility for MS in the USA for Indian students, fulfilling the minimum score requirement for GRE and TOEFL is indispensable. Moreover, each university has different score requirements.

GRE and TOEFL scores for Top US Universities

University GRE TOEFL
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) 31090
California Institute of Technology (Caltech) Depends on the selected program
Stanford University For Verbal 158-166, and 157-168 for Quantitative89-100
Harvard University For Verbal 158-166, and 157-168 for QuantitativeVaries between 90-100
University of Chicago 320104 and 26 in each section

Akansha Semwal

Study Abroad Expert

Akansha Semwal is a content marketer at upGrad and has also worked as a social media marketer & sub-editor. Experienced in creating impressive Statement of Purpose, Essays, and LOR, she knows how to captivate the attention of Admissions Committee. Her research-driven;study-abroad articles helps aspirants to make the prudent decision. She holds a bachelor's & master's degree in Literature from the University of Delhi.

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