A PhD in the USA — How to prepare for it?

Posted by Rohit Mittal

You have your Bachelor’s degree done, you have your Master’s degree done and now you are planning to do your PhD in the United States? So how does a PhD degree work in the US? Can you apply directly after your Bachelor’s or do you need to have a Master’s degree? Can you transfer credits from old studies to your PhD? Yes, these are many questions which I am sure every single one of you is trying to get answers to. So no worries guys you will find the answers to all of these questions right here in this article about how to get ready for your PhD in the United States.

When can you apply for a PhD?

This depends solely on your field of studies. For example, if your study field is engineering and you will graduate with a so-called B.E. or B.Tech. you are allowed to apply for your PhD right after your graduation ceremony. However, if you are in a different major such as general science or arts, you won’t be able to do your PhD after your Bachelor’s degree, you will definitely have to do a postgraduate degree such as a M.Sc., M.A, or M.Com.. Once you have finished your postgraduate you will also be allowed to apply for your PhD degree.

Above I mentioned that as an engineer student you can do your PhD right after your Master’s degree. Well that’s true but you have better chances to get a job, when also having a Master’s degree. Therefore, we would recommend you to also do your Master’s degree and if it is possible you should do that at a good institute. After having done so you should apply for your PhD, as it will be easier to get courses accredited.

How can I transfer my credits?

There are different ways to get your credits transferred for your PhD degree, but it will definitely be easier to transfer credits from your Master’s degree than from your Bachelor’s degree, that is why we recommend to do a Master’s degree in any case. University actually like to transfer credits, as credits can normally only be transferred from Master’s degrees, universities prefer to choose applicants which actually do have a Master’s. The more credits are there to be transferred the cheaper it is for the university as they don’t have to pay for these credits. Apart from the credits universities prefer to choose applicants, who have a Master’s degree because they already tend to have a lot of experience in research and research is the main part of a PhD degree.

So to all of you engineering students out there. Yes, you will be able to apply for a PhD in the United States, even without having a Master’s degree, but we definitely recommend you to do one if you perceive the goal to get a PhD. If you have a Master’s degree you are more likely to get accepted by a university, than if you don’t. Also it will help you for your PhD degree, as during your master’s degree you will have to do a lot of research work. Once you start your PhD you will be an expert in researching and this will make the journey to your PhD degree way easier.

We hope this article helped you during your decision making process and we hope we managed to answer all your questions. Please if you do feel you need to get more information, feel free to get in contact with us. For now we wish you the best of luck on your journey to your PhD degree, you will see everything will work out just fine.

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