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USA Education System

Before you choose to study in the USA, you must know that the educational institutes in the USA are both public and private. Different institutions offer different levels of degrees. The U.S. higher education system is known to be approachable, diverse, and liberal and is recognized for both its size and quality. Nearly all U.S. postsecondary institutions are licensed and operate under the ownership of either a government (if public) or a private corporation (if independent). The quality of education of these institutes is analyzed by specific accrediting agencies that are recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and members of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

If you wish to study in the USA, you may choose to pursue degrees at the following levels:

Associate’s Degree:

Associate’s degrees are awarded after completing two years of undergraduate study at community, technical, and tribal colleges and by universities as well.

Bachelor’s Degree (or Baccalaureate Degree):

Bachelor’s Degrees are awarded after generally completing four years or a longer study at a college or university. In some academic fields at some institutions completion of the degree may require five years as well.


A certificate course often takes one academic year to complete. Graduate certificate programs are likely to provide credit toward a degree that one wishes to complete later. Along with that, it allows you to enter your chosen profession as well.

Doctoral Degree (or Doctorate):

Doctoral Degree requires four to six years or more of post-baccalaureate study with a dissertation as a capstone. The most common doctorate, the “Doctor of Philosophy” (Ph.D.), can be obtained in a large number of disciplines: such as Doctor of Medicine (M.D.); Doctor of Law (Juris Doctorate or LL.D.); and Education (Ed.D).

Master’s Degree:

A graduate degree is awarded after one to two years of full-time post-baccalaureate study. The most common Master Degrees are M.A. (Master of Arts) in the largest number of disciplines; M.Ed. (Master of Education); M.S. (Master of Science); M.P.H. (Master of Public Health) or M.B.A. (Master of Business Administration).

Professional Study:

A program of university-level study designed to train students for a specific profession such as engineering, teaching, law, medicine, or architecture.

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