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Masters Study in the Americas

From the world renowned universities of the USA and Canada to the rapidly growing higher education sector of Brazil, North and South America offer an excellent snapshot of the modern education landscape.

In fact, no other continent presents quite so many options for postgraduate study abroad. There's no need to be overwhelmed by the amount of choice on offer though - our guides to Masters study in the Americas will help you make sense of the possibilities available to you. Whether you’re looking to study at a prestigious Ivy League graduate school, a multi-lingual Canadian university, or one of Brazil’s agile young institutions, we’ve put together the information you need to make the right decision for your Masters.

To get started, simply pick a country from the menu on the left. Or, if you’d like to learn a little more about studying a Masters in North or South America, read on!

Masters study in North America

Few, if any, students overlook North America when considering the right destination for postgraduate study abroad. Global ranking tables consistently locate the world’s best universities in the USA and Canada, but both countries are also home to a huge number of smaller institutions offering unique postgraduate opportunities.

How popular is Masters study in North America?

Together, the USA and Canada host over 20% of the world’s international students, making North America the most popular continent for study abroad.

The USA accounts for the lion’s share of this amount – which, for a country with over 2,000 universities, isn’t especially surprising. Over 740,000 international students make it by far the biggest study abroad destination in the world.

Canada isn’t left behind though. Despite a smaller university system it still attracts over 120,000 foreign students, making it the 8th most popular international study destination overall.

Are North American universities well ranked?

US universities routinely take the top spots in major global rankings tables, with institutions such as the California Institute of Technology and Harvard doing particularly well. Canada isn’t under-represented though, with several institutions in the top 50 and top 100.

Of course, top-ranked institutions aren’t the only worthwhile destinations for Masters study in North America. As a postgraduate (or ‘graduate’) student you’ll be just as interested in smaller, more specialised, universities. Both Canada and the US offer plenty of these, from graduate management schools to dedicated art and design institutes.

How expensive are Masters degrees in North America?

The sheer range of postgraduate courses on offer across North America means that an equally wide variety of tuition fees are charged.

On the whole, the US has a reputation for being particularly expensive, but this is offset by the amount of funding available to its students (and the fact that international students in the USA don’t usually pay fees at a higher rate).

Canadian programmes are usually (though not always) less expensive than those in the USA and, again, plenty of funding is available.

Masters study in South America

South American universities are a relatively new feature of the global higher education landscape, but they’re quickly becoming a prominent one.

Brazil in particular is leading the way as one of the so-called ‘BRICS’ nations (a group that includes Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa). Its economic growth has spurred the expansion of its universities, with nearly 200 higher education institutions now operating in the country.

How popular is Masters study in South America?

The relatively recent growth of higher education in South America means that it still lags behind other regions in terms of international student numbers.

Brazil is currently the most popular South American study abroad destination, with over 15,000 foreign students at its universities.

Are South American universities well ranked?

South American universities are beginning to place in global rankings tables and, again, it’s Brazil that currently leads the way with two institutions usually making the top 400.

For the time being, however, the rapid growth of South America’s universities may be better reflected by rankings tables that specifically assess newer institutions in emerging regions.

The Times Higher Education 100 under 50 table, for example, includes one Brazilian institution in the top 50. Meanwhile its dedicated BRICS and emerging economies ranking includes four of Brazil’s universities.

How expensive are Masters degrees in South America?

Fees vary between South American nations, with different governments taking different approaches to the regulation of their university pricing. It’s possible for courses to be incredibly competitively priced though.

Brazil is the leader in this respect once more, with most of its public universities actually waiving tuition fees for both domestic and international students.

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