Documents required to study abroad – Get ready to apply

Antony used to be a Product Manager with us and occasionally has written articles for our study abroad aspirants. When not at work you'd find him at the theaters watching movies.


31 Dec 2020 80.3K Book icon 5 mins Share

Documents required to study abroad – Get ready to apply

Your certificates and biodata are not the only documents required to make an application. Find out what are the key documents required to study abroad.

31 Dec 2020 80.3K Book icon 5 mins Share
Documents required to study abroad – Get ready to apply

How easy is it to study overseas these days? Every third person I know is studying abroad, be it to step up their career options or to get a better academic experience.

But what makes a study abroad journey successful? Besides other proactive approaches that you take, you have to get ready in advance, the right set of documents required to study abroad.

Not all universities around the globe require the same set of credentials. Hence you should pay attention to the requirements mentioned by the different universities and colleges. If unsure, speak to our counsellors who are experts and can guide you in the right direction. Let’s jump to the topic.

List of documents required to study abroad

Always read through the requirements carefully and take notes so that you don’t miss any. Look out for ways to strengthen your application. You’ll also find tips to make your application stand out. Here are the general document requirements mentioned by the universities.

  1. Application form
  2. Certificates
  3. Competitive exam scores
  4. Statement of Purpose
  5. Resume
  6. Letter of Recommendation
  7. Passport-size photographs
  8. Experience documents
  9. Additional documents

 1. Application form

Application form is a must among the documents required to study abroad.

The application form will have fields to enter all your personal and professional information. Fill in the application form carefully and properly. If there is an option to fill in the details before printing the application form, you should go for it. It makes it so much easier for the admissions officer to go through your application.

2. Certificates

You have to include your school or degree certificates while submitting the documents required to study abroad.

If you’ve just completed school, you will need your senior secondary certificates (SSC) and higher secondary certificates (HSC) along with the mark sheets. If you have already finished your bachelors’ degree or postgraduate degree, you will have to produce your degree certificate and the mark sheets.

3. Competitive exam scores

If English is not your first language, you will have to submit a proof of English proficiency. This is because the courses will be delivered in English and the universities wouldn’t want the language to be a limiting factor for your studies. Usually, for arts courses you will require either TOEFL or IELTS scores for your admission. They might also have specific overall score requirement with a minimum in reading, writing, speaking and listening. Several test providers offer online versions of their tests too. You can confirm with the university and opt for this.

Many universities require GMAT, GRE, and ELSAT and so on for other courses. The test certificates are extremely important among the list of documents required to study abroad. It has a validity date to it. So, make sure the certificates are valid while you submit it to the university. Speak to our experts who can help you get things in order and guide you in submitting a complete application.

4. Statement of purpose

I can confidently tell you that my SOP bagged me my place at university. This written document will signify who you are, what made you choose your career path, why you opted for that particular university, what are you planning to do after the course, interests and other personal details. A well- written SOP will be the key to your way into the university. So, invest a good amount of time working on your SOP before you submit the application. You’ll find several tips on the internet for writing an effective SOP.

5. Resume

You have to include your resume while submitting the documents required to study abroad.

Right after you finish your high school, it is a good idea to prepare an effective resume. I know it’s slightly unrealistic to have a powerful resume just after high school, but give it a try! It is wise to get help while preparing your resume; stick to two pages at the most, if possible.


6. Letters of recommendation

People always want to know what others think of you. Find the right opportunity to ask for an LOR  from the right person. He/she should be someone who you know for sure will nail it for you. Look up for tips for writing LORs, find sample LORs and pass it along to the person writing the recommendation letter for you. A sad recommendation letter will push you down the ladder.

7. Passport size photographs

You will have to include passport size documents while submitting the documents required to study abroad.

Sounds like a cakewalk, right? I almost lost my chances of getting out of India just because I attached a wrong- sized photo! Honestly. Always double check the dimensions of the passport size photo, be it admissions or visas. This is an aspect that students tend to overlook when getting ready the documents required to study abroad.

8. Experience Documents

If you are applying for grad school, make sure you have relevant experience documents. You might not have experience certificates if you’ve just finished high school. If that’s the case, you can ignore this step.

9. Additional documents

Many a times the smallest award that you have received will push your application a little harder. Produce proof of achievements and other certificates that will explain your talents and extracurricular activities you’ve undertaken. If you’ve always been a book worm, never mind!

Re-check the documents

You will have to recheck to ensure that you have ready, all the documents required to study abroad.

Once you have all the right documents, re-check it as many times as you want. This will take you one step closer to your dream university. Have attested copies of all the documents in a folder and arrange it according to the check list. This will help you organize your application better.

It might seem like you have all the documents required to study abroad, but you won’t know until you sit down to get it in order. So, don’t wait till the last minute. Plan ahead of time and prepare all the documents a couple of months before the application process starts. This will ease your blood pressure and that of your parents!

Please speak to us if you need more information about how to apply to universities abroad. We'll give you a plan and suggest options tailored to your interests. Once you receive the offer letter from the university, you can think of applying for your visa. All the best!

Editor's note: This article was originally published in August 2015. We have included up-to-date information and made it comprehensive.

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