Graduate school destination for international students: Here’s All you need to know

Graduate school destination for international students: Here’s All you need to know: A blog about the top best places to go for your graduate education Abroad.

When making the decision to pursue a graduate degree, there are many factors to consider. Of all these decisions, one of the most critical is where. Graduate School destination can be a major factor in deciding which program is best for you. There are many great places to choose from, from the US, UK, Canada to New Zealand graduate school abroad is worth every effort you will have put in while searching and deciding the best graduate school destination that will suit your goals.

This blog post will best prepare you about everything you need to know about graduate school destination. We will look at the most important factors you need to consider Including what program is best supported in the different locations, funding opportunities, cost of living, career goals, culture and every other thing in-between. Now, Grab your popcorn and let’s dive into it. 

Key Features in this Blog; The Top Graduate School Destination. 

  • Introduction
  • Key Features in this blog on the top graduate school destination. 
  • Factors to consider while choosing a graduate school destination.
  • Popular graduate school destination for international students.
  • Top five best places for graduate education.
  • Wrapping things up.
  • Frequently Asked Questions 

Factors to consider while choosing a graduate school destination.

When choosing a graduate school destination, there are many factors to consider. Cost, location, program offerings, and campus culture are some of the most important factors. It’s also important to think about your long-term career goals and how each school can help you reach them.

However, it is not easy to decide on a graduate school destination, especially if you are an international student. A lot of factors go into selecting a graduate school that is just right for you. Every country has its own education system, and each school has its own rules and regulations on how to apply for the courses.

So, before applying for any course at any school, it is important to know all the details. Some of the top factors you need to consider while choosing a graduate school destination include:

Academic reputation

Academic reputation is one of the most important considerations for prospective graduate students. Find out how your desired program ranks compared with those at other schools. Which professors are doing cutting-edge research in your field? What kind of funding and resources will be available to you? The answers to these questions can help you narrow down your top choices.


Most graduate students rely on some form of financial aid, whether it’s a fellowship, teaching assistantship or research assistantship. Some programs offer full funding (tuition remission plus a stipend), while others offer partial support. There are also opportunities to teach or conduct research off-campus during the summer months. Graduate students who receive financial aid tend to perform better academically than those who do not, so this should be an important consideration when choosing a graduate school destination.

Location and cost of living

Geography can play a big role in choosing a graduate school destination — especially if you’re planning on staying there for several years. It’s important to research the campus and surrounding area before making any decisions about where to apply. Check the culture, lifestyle. Is it an urban or rural area? You will have to put all this into consideration. 

Nonetheless, there are other factors you need to consider when choosing your graduate school destination. You have to ask yourself the following questions;

1. Am I a right match for this country, will my qualifications be accepted in this grad school destination country?

2. What is expected to study in my subject area and get a graduate-level degree in that particular country?

3. Are post-study work options available in this graduate school destination country?

4. Can I blend culturally in the graduate school destination?

When you have asked yourself all these questions and you can answer them. You are a few steps away from your final decision. Notwithstanding, here are the most common graduate school destinations for international students. 

Popular graduate school destination for international students.

Each year, thousands of international students flock to the United States in hopes of pursuing graduate studies at some of the world’s most prestigious universities.

While the US continues to attract a large number of international students for higher education, a recent study by Brookings Institution reveals that this number has declined over the past five years.

The study also says that international students have started to choose Canada and Germany as their preferred destinations for graduate studies. However, the US remains the number one. 

Top 10 most popular grad school destinations for international students.

1. United States 

2. United Kingdom 

3. Canada 

4. Germany 

5. Sweden 

6. Norway

7. Australia 

8. South Africa 

9. South Korea 

10. India 

You might want to check out the following: 

Top 5 Best Places For Graduate Education.

There are several places you can study. Every country has their strengths as well as their weaknesses in terms of graduate education. In this section, I express my thoughts on the places I think are the best destinations for graduate education. My expressions are based on experience, research and general speculations. Have it at the back of your mind that you are the only one that is responsible for your decision and that’s fine. 

Best Places for graduate education; Graduate School Destination 

United States 

Without any doubt, the United States has been the most preferred Graduate School destination for international students. One of the major reasons for this is that in the United States, there is a lot of funding for graduate students as compared with other countries. Apart from the high quality education in the US, foreigners can easily blend in the US. There are also career opportunities in the United States plus a fair admission requirements.

This is what you must know about studying in the United States.

  1. There are a lot of Fully-Funded scholarship for international graduate students in the US
  2. You don’t necessarily need a Master’s degree before you can pursue a PhD. However, there are more funding for PhD than Master’s degree in the US. While this is cool, you might just want to inspect your career goal before making any decision. 
  3. Funding in the United States can come through various means such as, Graduate assistantship (Teaching assistance or Research Assistant), Fellowship or Grants. There are also student loans but this might not be applicable for international students. Please see our post to learn more about funding graduate school abroad.
  4. Sometimes, prospective grad school students are required to reach out to a professor. This is a very important step for graduate school in the United States. It’s easier to gain admission and funding if you can secure a professor who is willing to work with you. 
  5. Note that TAs are mostly offered by professors as well as RA. It all depends on the school and environment you find yourself.
  6. Some schools in the US offer 100% tuition fee for all graduate students but these schools are highly competitive. 

United Kingdom 

the Uk is another best graduate school destination for international students. First of all, admission into UK schools is pretty easy and quick. On top of that, the UK is home to most of the world’s best Universities and best higher institutions of learning. Most masters degrees in the Uk is one year and it will cost you a lesser amount, say, $10,000 – $15,000 to gain a masters degree in the UK. This is cheap to compare with over $25,000 for schools in the US. 

However, there are less findings in the UK than the US. There are scholarships such as commonwealth scholarship, Chevening Government scholarship, PTDF, etc. Have in mind that these scholarships are highly competitive. You may not need an English test. That is for Nigerians but having it might just be a plus. Remember that any information that will increase your chances of gaining admission should not be overlooked. Even if it’s not in the requirements, please provide it. You will thank me later. 


In Africa, we have South Africa and Egypt. These countries have great Universities of quality education and high research capacity. However, there are few scholarships in these countries for international students. Most times, their major sources of scholarships are government-funded scholarships. 

Canada is another top destination for grad students. There is PhD funding in Canada. However, getting a PhD requires a Masters degree and there is less funding for a masters degree in Canada. One of the sources of scholarship in Canada is the Mastercard Foundation. 

Generally, the Erasmus Mundus scholarship is one of the major scholarships for European countries. There are Total scholarships for Nigerians to study in France. Some countries like Germany and Sweden offer free tuition for international students but students may prove that they can cater for their living expenses, say, $5,000. There is an opportunity for you to work and study too which makes a lot of sense. 

Asia has many Government-funded and their admission requirements are fair. They also have a low living cost which makes it a great graduate school destination for graduate students. 

Wrapping things up.

Well, I believe I have done Justice to some of the questions you might have concerning graduate destinations for international students. I hope that this post helps you make a careful and informed decision while selecting where you want to study that next big thing. Please, I encourage you to sign up for our newsletter and remember to drop your thoughts and questions in the comment section. Share your experience so that others can learn. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Graduate School Destination 

Is where you go to graduate school important?

It can make a difference if a graduate school is well-known among folks in your field in the area where you are looking for work. If all other factors are equal, a school in a different country, state, or city may not suit them as well.

Is it important where you study for a master’s degree?

In certain graduate programs, location will be more important than in others. Because of the huge range of legal systems in existence, some particularly location-specific degrees, such as law, will severely limit your mobility.

Does graduate school ranking matter while choosing a graduate school to apply? 

It makes no difference what your school’s ranking is. It all comes down to how competitive you are and whether you want to brag about having a degree from UCLA, Yale, or NYU in the future, but it won’t help you get work. When you apply for graduate school, it isn’t even taken into account.

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