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Graduate programs as International Student


Hello, this is my first post here. I'm very excited to discover this forum!

I'm an undergrad (Urban Planning) from Mexico City.

Currently I'm looking to build my path to graduate school in order to be accepted at GSD, DUSP or Berkeley. After reading a lot about the programs I still have questions about the international student process. Is it difficult? In which extent my GPA would influence my admission even tough I took CS and psychology classes? I need to be top at my class?

Thanks in advance for any advice.


Hi @E7VZO,

For those specific schools and others, you can check out the Planetizen guide to urban planning programs. It's a PDF book you can buy online that contains profiles of each school and what the average student profile is, as well as admission rates.

I don't believe the admission process itself is that different between domestic and international students, but I am not sure. It might be a little bit harder, but generally the bigger programs like you mentioned have a good chunk of each cohort that is international (mine had 40% international!). I'm not sure how interpreting international transcripts and grading systems work, though. And your essays and rec letters will all have to be in English.

Where things are really different for domestic vs. international is acquiring a student visa, the tuition costs, and eventually getting a permit to work in the United States or a planning job that will sponsor you (if you wish to remain in the US upon graduation). But that all comes later, after admission.

Good luck!