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What International Students Should Know About Engineering Programs in the U.S. & Canada

April 24, 2024
7 Minute Read

Learn about financing your degree, the application process, credential evaluations and more, when applying for engineering programs in the U.S. and Canada.

Engineering Students talking together

When deciding if you should study engineering in the U.S. or Canada instead of in your country of education, there are many questions and challenges. Which university is best for me? How will I afford it? Will it be worth it? Learn what you should know before you make a life-changing choice. 

Why Study Engineering in the U.S. and Canada?

The United States and Canada are home to some of the best universities in the world for engineering. At these universities you will get access to top-quality education with diverse specializations and ample research opportunities. Additionally, people  from all over the world come to study at universities in the U.S. and Canada, providing you the opportunity to network and learn alongside them. This presents an excellent opportunity to establish valuable contacts who can support your future career.

Cost And Scholarships

Tuition fees vary depending on whether you are an undergraduate or postgraduate, whether you choose to study  in the U.S. or Canada, and which university or college you choose. 


  • Undergraduate degree is $40,000 to $90,000 a year on average
  • Graduate degree is $19,000 to $100,000 a year on average


  • Undergraduate degree is $7,000 to $50,000 a year on average
  • Graduate degree s $14,000 to $40,000 a year on average

These prices may seem very high, but prices include textbooks, room and board, and administration fees. 

There are a handful of scholarships that higher educational institutions give to international students. Here are the most popular ones:

  • Merit-based: These are the most common scholarships, and they are based on students' academic performance.
  • Need-based: These scholarships are based on the student's financial status. 
  • Country-based: These are given out to international students to help encourage a diversity of sending countries to U.S. and Canada.

Keep in mind that scholarships are limited, the amounts vary depending on the university, and criteria to apply differ from one school to the next. If you are interested in a scholarship, you should research the scholarship early and make sure you know what is needed to apply.

Application Documents

Each university or college is autonomous, which means they are independent and make their own requirements for international applicants. Some documents that you may be required to submit are: 

  • Academic credentials 
  • A credential evaluation report with a grade point average (GPA) and course listing 
  • Essay 
  • Letters of recommendation 
  • English language test scores 
  • Other external exams such as SAT or GRE 
  • Financial statements 

Career Path After Studying Engineering  

After you have put all your hard work in at your university or college of choice, you want it to pay off with a job that you love and pays well. With an engineering degree there are many paths you can take: 

  • Industrial Engineer - Designs facilities and systems to ensure they are operating at full potential
  • Biomedical Engineer - Creates medical devices and works with health care professionals
  • Environmental Engineer - Works to create a better environment with sustainable solutions
  • Civil Engineer – Designs and tests commercial projects (highways, bridges, tunnels)
  • Mechanical Engineer - Designs and tests thermal and mechanical devices for various types of equipment and machines

These are just a few of the more popular career paths after getting an engineering degree. If you see one that excites you, engineering might be the right choice for you! 

Enhance Your ME Application with a Credential Evaluation

Once you have decided where you want to apply, you may have to provide a credential evaluation. A credential evaluation is a tool for universities and colleges to compare academic achievements and degrees earned in one country to another. ECE can help you with that process to get a trusted academic credential assessment. If interested in U.S. institutions, click here. If interested in Canadian institutions, click here to learn more.