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--- tom (11/25/2011)
Studying in the USA's college would be a wonderful experience for most of the foreign student, that is why you will need to have a plan before you come over. There are some of the key point below you would need to consider when you are doing this plan.

Go studying USA Now? or Later?

If you are thinking your budget keeps you away from studying in the USA, I will tell you that it would be more difficult for you to do that later, especially if it is your financial difficulties. It is because the tuition fee for college across the US keeps rising no matter how the USA economy is doing. I still remember that I pay for USD$1,800(Non-resident) for 12 credit in a community school 8 years ago and now it will cost me $5,400!

TOEFL or Placement Test?

Most of the school requires you to take a TOEFL test for your admission, but sometimes they do not. It is because they would have their own Placement Test to find out your English Level, that is why sometimes your TOEFL score is useless for them. So, you will need to ask the college's admission requirement before you go to take any tests (Unless you want to waste your time and money).

Homestay or living by yourself?

Most of the college offers boarding and meals for a reasonable cost, otherwise they may have some homestay program for the foreign student. In some big cities like New York City, It protects you from crimes and troubles to stay in the school (Plus, may save your transportation cost), although it would be cost more than renting an apartment outside. According to my personal experience, I feel it is difficult to live with a family in a different culture, that is why I do not recommend any homestay programs, but it is up to you if you like to learn about American Life.

Driving or Using Public Transit?

Driving makes American feels independent and pride, So you will also consider driving your own if you are living in a suburban with limited transportation system. If you want to drive, you will need to find out if you could afford auto insurance, gasoline cost and parking fee. On the other hand, if your city has a good public transit system, I will just suggest you to use it because it means your city has a very bad traffic that keeps people away from driving.
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