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MS in Abroad – Top Countries, Universities, Ranking & Fees

Updated on 28 March, 2024

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad abroad Editorial Team

Going for higher studies in a foreign land offers a whole different experience than your home country. Whether you are a student who has just graduated from college or someone who is in the last year of your college, there’s a point where you decide to either opt for a job or pursue a master’s degree. 

If you decide to go with the second option, there are a lot of opportunities waiting for you ahead. In this blog, you’ll get to know the process to apply for ms in abroad and what it is like to pursue masters from the top study destinations in the world. 

Pursuing masters abroad is a big decision. Before opting for an ideal study destination, students have to consider certain factors like tuition fees, quality of education and job opportunities after pursuing your degree. 

A glimpse of the top study destinations for ms studies abroad is given below:

1. USA 

A masters degree in the USA is of 2 years and consists of detailed coursework, training and research. The universities in USA provide practical learning through internships and on-campus jobs that students can do along with their degree. Along with studying their core subjects, the students have a flexibility to choose any electives. 

The average tuition fees in the USA for pursuing masters is INR 30 lakhs and above (approx.).

 Some of the top universities in USA for masters and their popular disciplines are given below 

Global RankUniversity 
1Massachusetts Institute of Technology  
2Oxford University
5Harvard University
California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
13University of Chicago

The eligibility criteria to apply for a masters degree in the USA includes 16 years of formal education which means 12 years of schooling and 4 years of Bachelor’s degree. 

2. Australia 

Being one of the most prominent study destinations in the world, Australia offers a wide range of opportunities for international students wishing to pursue their higher studies. A masters degree in Australia spans for 1.5 to 2 years.

There are 8 universities in Australia that are listed in the world’s top 150 universities reflecting the country’s academic excellence. You get a chance to choose from 40 universities offering a wide range of courses. The tuition fees for masters in Australia ranges between 10.72 lakh INR to 17.45 lakh INR (approx.) 

Some of the top universities of Australia along with their global rank and popular programs are given below :

Global RankUniversity
27Australian National University
37University of Melbourne
38University of Sydney
43UNSW Sydney
47University of Queensland

3. Canada 

Known for its affordable living and diverse culture, Canada is one of the most popular destinations for international students all over the world. A master’s degree in Canada is 

Either course-based or thesis-based, depending on the university you enroll in. Some Canadian universities even offer the blend of two. 

Generally, ms in canada lasts up to two years however, some specializations are only a year long. The tuition fees of postgraduate programs range from 64,080 INR to 38,74646 INR. 

Some of the top universities for masters in Canada along with their popular programs and global are given below:

Global RankUniversity
26University of Toronto
27McGill University
46University of British Columbia
126University of Alberta
140McMaster University 

4. UK 

As compared to other countries, a masters degree in the UK is one year long. Being a home to the most prestigious universities in the world, the country is known for its high quality education and wide range of programs to choose from. Masters programs in the UK are either taught or researched depending on the course you have chosen.

The average cost of masters in the UK for international students ranges between 10.70 lakh INR to 31 lakh INR (per year).  

The list of top universities of UK along with their global rank and popular programs are given below 

Global RankUniversity 
2University of Oxford 
3University of Cambridge
Imperial College London 
11University of Edinburgh

How to apply for ms abroad? 

1. Figure out how much you can afford to spend on your higher education abroad 

Budget plays an important role in deciding the ideal study destination for you. Before choosing the country you want to go for your masters, analyze certain factors like the tuition fees and the cost of living for the country. Comparing these factors for each country and decide what will be the best option for you. 

Choosing the place of study according to your budget will help you make a wise decision and relieve you from the unnecessary pressure of taking heavy education loans to fund your education. 

2. Choose the discipline you want to study 

It might be possible that you are not aware about what discipline interests you the most if you are confused among a few disciplines. The way best to get rid of this confusion and uncertainty is to do research. 

Research about the best disciplines in each country and read the reviews given by the students who have either studied that discipline or are currently studying. This will help you make a better choice. Some of most popular disciplines abroad are IT and Management, Engineering, Law, International Relations, Medicine and Psychology. 

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3. Decide the place of study 

Once you have looked at your finances, decide the place that matches with your budget. Apart from your budget, also put an emphasis on some important factors like the scope of the course you have selected, country’s cost of living and part-time job opportunities. Finding the answers to these questions given below will help you make the right decision. 

  • Is the employability rate after completing your studies good in that country? 
  • Does the program offer practical learning through internships? 
  • What kind of lifestyle does the country offer? 
  • Is the cost of living affordable ? 
  • Do you want to work along with your studies? If yes, then check the country that allows international students to do part-time jobs while studying. 

4. Compare the programmes under the selected discipline 

Once you have decided the discipline you want to do your masters in. It’s time that you select the suitable programme under that discipline. Analyse the curriculum that each programme offers. 

By looking at the course modules, you’ll get a glimpse of the topics you’ll get to study. Some of the programmes are based on practical learning whereas others follow a theoretical approach. By looking at the course structure for each programme you can decide which one will be the best for you. 

5. Start applying at different universities 

Now that you have reached a point where you know which programme you want to study, the next step involves applying for that programme in different universities. 

You may choose to apply in multiple universities of a single country 

or apply in various countries. But before you start applying, keep in mind that the admission process and requirements vary from country to country. Some countries follow a centralized system through which students can apply at multiple universities whereas other countries require the students to apply at each university separately. 

6. Clear your  English language Proficiency test 

The programmes in foreign countries are English-based. Therefore, to apply for a program abroad, you have to prove your English proficiency by appearing for language proficiency tests such as IELTS and TOEFL.  

Each of the tests follow a different format but test the 4 major skills of the candidate : Speaking, Listening, Reading and Writing. If you have studied in the English medium since your childhood, you won’t face any problem in preparing for the exams but if English wasn’t your medium of instruction you’ll need to work on some factors like grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation. 

7. Apply for scholarships

If you meet the application requirements set by the university you are eligible to apply for a scholarship. Before applying, check whether the scholarship is for national students, international students or both. 

The documents which you’ll need to apply for the scholarship are 

  • Application form 
  • Personal essay 
  • Letters of recommendation (LORs)
  • Letter of acceptance from a university 
  • Official financial statements that can act as a proof of low income 
  • proof of extraordinary academic or athletic achievement

To apply for a scholarship, here are the steps you need to follow 

  • Register for the scholarship by filling out the application form 
  • Check whether you have received the confirmation on your mail id 
  • Draft a personal statement revealing your interest to study abroad 
  • Collect you academic proofs 
  • Collect the official statements proofs of your low income or nationality
  • Proofread all the documents and rectify the errors if any 
  • Send the documents to the scholarship provider. 
  • Submit the acceptance letter that you have received from the university

8. Finalize your university

Applying at multiple universities will give you many options to choose from. If you don’t get selected at a particular university, you will have other options to look forward to. 

After you receive an acceptance letter from the universities that you applied for. It’s time to finalize the university you want to study in. Take some time to make your final decision and after selecting your choice, send the confirmation to the university. 

9. Apply for a student visa 

Once you finalize your university by accepting their offer, you need to apply for a student visa. The issuance of the visa may take several weeks or even months depending on your nationality and the country you are applying for. 

Therefore, it is always advisable to apply for a student visa early to avoid the last minute rush. You can apply for a student visa using two methods 

  • Online Visa Application : Most of the students prefer to apply for a student visa online due the convenience of the process. You can do the same by filling all the relevant forms available online. 
  • Offline Visa Application : In offline mode, you’ll need to download the forms, fill the information and submit to the authorities. 

After filling the visa application, you need to pay an application fee. In this step, you’ll be required to submit supporting documents along with the application. Therefore, make sure that you have the following documents 

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A valid passport 

How much validity your passport should have may vary depending on the country you are going to apply for. Some countries may require you to have a valid passport till your course expires while others may demand an extended validity. Whichever country you are applying to, make sure that your passport has at least two blank pages for stamping 

Proof of a bonafide student

A student enrolled in an accredited high school, college or university refers to a bonafide student. While applying for a student visa for any country you must have proof that you are a  bonafide student. 

Language proficiency 

The type of exam you’ll need to clear as a proof of language proficiency depends on the country you are applying to. Along with your visa application, you’ll need to submit a valid IELTS or TOEFL score. 

10. Consultancies 

Applying for a masters degree consists of a series of steps that need to be followed carefully to make sure that everything goes smoothly and you get the visa for your dream country. While you can apply for admission in any country on your own, seeking help always goes a long way in making the process easier. 

Consultancy services make your study abroad journey easier by offering assistance in various aspects of your admission process. They guide you in choosing the right course and university by looking at your profile. To make your chances of selection high, they even assist you in organizing your SOPs and LORs. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it cost to study abroad?

The cost of studying abroad depends on the country you are going to. The tuition fees of the university varies from country to country. For example, ms in Canada could cost you between 64,080 INR to 38,74646 INR.

How to get a scholarship for pursuing ms in abroad

You can apply for a scholarship for pursuing ms abroad if you meet the application requirements set by the university. The documents that you’ll need for the same are application form, personal essay, LORs, letter of acceptance from a university, proof of low income and proof of extraordinary academic or athletic achievement.

What are the entrance exams for ms abroad?

The most widely accepted international entrance exams for pursuing ms abroad are GRE and GMAT. GRE is used for admission in various graduate programs whereas GMAT is used specifically for business school admissions. Besides these entrance exams, candidates need to prove their English language proficiency by opting for either IELTS or TOEFL, PTE depending on the eligibility criteria set by the university.

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad abroad Editorial Team

We are a dedicated team of study-abroad experts, ensuring intensive research and comprehensive information in each of our blogs. With every piece written, we aim at simplifying the overseas education process for all. Our diverse experience as journalists, content writers, editors, content strategists, and marketers helps create the most relevant and authentic blogs for our readers.

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