As a beacon of freedom and opportunity, and home to the world’s best universities, America is a popular choice for international students. There are around a million international students in the US, and around a fifth of those are Indian, making them the second-biggest group of graduate students and the third-largest nationality studying for a Bachelor’s degree. But what makes America so attractive?
Why head to America to study?
The best universities in the US are world-renowned, as the country can boast more world-famous universities than any other state. While its universities may not be as ancient as Europe’s, they more than compensate for it in their academic excellence. In the latest QS World Rankings, more than a quarter of the top 100 universities in the world are American, including five in the top ten.
But American universities can offer so much more. The size and diversity of the US mean there’s a university for everyone, whether it’s the tradition of the East coast, the modern outlook of the West coast, or something in between. And America’s history as a nation built on immigration has been carried through to its approach to study. There is a variety of visas available to international students — and their partners and dependents — and they allow up to 20 hours of paid, on-campus work.
Why America is ideal for computer science
America is at the centre of the world’s Tech industry. Silicon Valley is the first place that people think of when they think of Tech. But technology is not limited just to the Bay Area of California. There are tech hubs across the country, and this is reflected by the number of leading names that hail from across the US.
Innovation is part of the American story, and wherever you study for a Computer Science degree, you will almost certainly be close to a major tech company or a key part of computing history. When you choose to study in America, you can be part of continuing that story.
Some of the best universities in America
If you are looking for a Bachelor’s degree in America, you will be spoiled by choice: there are over 4,000 institutions that can award degrees. We’ve selected five to represent the US’s diverse geographical and educational offers.
University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC)
Part of the University System of Maryland, UMBC is one campus of a network of eleven spread out throughout the state and is home to the System’s Engineering programmes. One of the larger campuses, it was the first inclusive college in Maryland.
The university has a strong reputation for research and was ranked in the US’s top ten for teaching and innovation. The UMBC Computer Science degree offers a broad curriculum, covering everything from AI to game design, giving students an excellent qualification to act as a foundation for work or further study in the US or elsewhere.
Portland State University
Founded shortly after the Second World War, Portland State University quickly grew to become a leading public research university. Ranked as one of the best universities in the western US, The Princeton Review also named it one of the best universities to study for a Bachelor’s degree.
Their four-year Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science is a modular programme. It allows students to adapt their course to best suit their interests, talents, and goals, whether that’s AI, cloud computing, cybersecurity, or a mix of everything.
George Mason University
Starting as part of the University of Virginia to serve the northern part of the state, George Mason became an independent university in 1972 and has developed its own reputation since then. It is considered a high research activity university and has two Nobel Prize winners associated with it.
George Mason is ranked as one of the top 50 computing programmes in the US and offers a Computer Science degree and a multidisciplinary Applied Computer Science programme that offers a more focused course. And because Northern Virginia has one of the US’s highest concentrations of tech firms, there are plenty of opportunities to benefit from the university’s industrial links.
Drexel University College of Engineering
If you already have a Bachelor’s degree and are looking to study in the United States for a Master's, then Drexel University has a range of courses. A private research university, it was founded in Philadelphia with a focus on science and technology. The university has grown to become multidisciplinary, but the School of Engineering remains its flagship school.
Drexel offers an unusual approach to allow you to tailor your Master's. Students study towards individual graduate certificates, allowing them flexibility in what and when they study. They can then "stack" three certificates to gain a full Master's degree.
Pace University is a private institution located in the heart of New York. Although it now also has a campus in Westchester County, it retains its centre in Lower Manhattan, giving students an opportunity to experience one of the world’s greatest cities while they study.
Pace was founded as a Business School, with the Pace brothers initially offering accounting courses from a couple of rented rooms. The practical focus remains, and the Pace Computer Science degree provides the practical knowledge, then consolidates it with internship opportunities in New York and across the world with their partner organisations.