Leading universities, world-class infrastructure, superior pedagogy, peerless faculties, promising future prospects, career opportunities, global orientation and a dynamic campus experience are just some of the reasons for USA being the most preferred destination for international students across the world. A higher cost of living and tuition fees in comparison to the other popular study abroad destinations is compensated by the large pool of funding opportunities available.


The main advantage of studying in the USA is being educated at globally leading universities. Here, we introduce you to the elite ten Universities in USA. Caltech, Stanford, Harvard, MIT, UCLA, UC Berkeley, Princeton, Chicago, Columbia and Yale are the top 10 universities in USA that are discussed here. Even though all these leading universities in USA are excellent, the uniqueness of each is what sets them apart.


Top 10 Universities of the United States


California Institute of Technology


One of the leading universities in the United States is the California Institute of Technology. Located in the city of Pasadena in California, the California Institute of Technology is a private research university. Colloquially referred to as the Caltech, the university was established in 1891 as a preparatory and vocational school by Amos G. Throop. California Institute of Technology is part of the niche group of institutes of technologies in the USA that is devoted to technical arts and applied sciences.

The California Institute of Technology is the proud alma mater to influential scientists like George Ellery Hale, Arthur Amos Noyes and Robert Andrews Millikan, 32 Nobel Prize winners including Linus Pauling who is the only individual in history to win two unshared Nobel Prizes, and 70 United States National Medal of Science or Technology winners.

Caltech offers 26 academic programmes and consists of 48 cross-disciplinary research institutes and centers. The California Institute of Technology has the following academic divisions:

  • Biology & Biological Engineering
  • Chemistry & Chemical Engineering
  • Engineering & Applied Science
  • Geological & Planetary Sciences
  • Humanities & Social Sciences
  • Physics, Mathematics & Astronomy

The California Institute of Technology provides need-based financial assistance. The admission process for the undergraduate as well as graduate programmes starts around the Fall. While the deadline for applications for undergraduate programmes lies in the first week of January, for graduate admissions the application deadlines vary by department and are from December 15 to January 15.


Stanford University

Stanford University is located between San Francisco and San Jose in the heart of California's Silicon Valley. Founded in 1891, it is not only one of the top 10 universities in USA but also one of the world's leading teaching and research universities.

Stanford University is the alma mater to a large number of prominent alumni. It is associated with 58 Nobel laureates, the largest number of Turing Award laureates for a single academic institution, 30 living billionaires and 17 astronauts. Stanford University is one of the leading producers of members of the United States Congress. Its faculty and alumni include founders of famous companies like Google, Hewlett-Packard, Nike, Sun Microsystems, and Yahoo.


The Schools at Stanford University are:

  • Business
  • Earth Sciences
  • Education
  • Engineering
  • Humanities & Sciences
  • Law
  • Medicine

Prospective undergraduate students at Stanford University need to apply by the 2nd of January. While the application deadline for graduate admissions varies according to the department concerned, most of the deadlines are in the month of December.

Harvard University

Leading the baton of the top universities in the United States is Harvard University. It is a private Ivy League research university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature, Harvard University is the oldest institution of higher learning in the USA. It was a founding member of the Association of American Universities in 1900.

Harvard University has the largest financial endowment of any academic institution in the world, standing at $30 billion as of September 2012. Its history, influence and wealth have made it one of the most prestigious universities in the world.

InstitutionARWU World RankQS World RankTHE World Rank
Harvard University122
Stanford University273
University of California, Berkeley3258
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)415
California Institute of Technology6101
Princeton University7106
Columbia University81413
University of Chicago999
Yale University11811
University of California, Los Angeles124012

Harvard University is made up of 11 principal academic units – ten faculties and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. The ten faculties manage schools and divisions that offer courses and award academic degrees. The various schools at Harvard are:

  • Harvard Business School
  • Division of Continuing Education
  • Faculty of Arts & Sciences
  • Graduate School of Design
  • Harvard Graduate School of Education
  • Harvard Kennedy School
  • Harvard Law School
  • Harvard School of Public Health
  • Harvard College
  • Harvard School of Dental Medicine
  • Harvard Divinity School
  • School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
  • Graduate School of Arts & Sciences
  • Harvard Medical School
  • Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study

Harvard University provides need-based financial assistance to its students. According to official record, more than 60 percent of Harvard College students receive scholarship aid.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

 The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, popularly known as MIT, is a private research university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. MIT is known for research and education in the physical sciences and engineering, biology, economics, linguistics and management. Massachusetts Institute of Technology was founded in 1861 in response to the increasing industrialisation of the USA. MIT was elected to the Association of American Universities in 1934.

MIT’s alumni consists of 81 Nobel laureates, 52 National Medal of Science recipients, 45 Rhodes Scholars and 38 MacArthur Fellows.

MIT has more than 30 academic departments and programmes across five schools:

  • School of Architecture and Planning
  • School of Engineering
  • School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences
  • Sloan School of Management
  • School of Science
  •  Whitaker College of Health Sciences and Technology

MIT offers both need and merit based financial aid. Around 90% of undergraduate students and 86% of graduate and professional students at MIT receive financial aid.

The application deadline for undergraduate admissions at MIT is February 15 and for graduate admissions, the application deadline varies according to the department from December to January.

Princeton University

Princeton University is the fourth-oldest college in the United States. It was chartered in 1746 as the College of New Jersey. Princeton University was renamed as a university in 1896. Although it does not have schools of medicine, law, divinity or business, it offers professional degrees through the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, the School of Engineering and Applied Science and the School of Architecture. The institute also has ties with the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton Theological Seminary, and the Westminster Choir College of Rider University. Princeton has associations with 35 Nobel laureates, 17 National Medal of Science winners and three National Humanities Medal recipients.

The faculty at Princeton University balance excellence through both classroom instruction and independent study advising. Undergraduate students at Princeton can choose from a gamut of electives and pursue departmental concentrations as well as interdisciplinary certificate programmes. UG students graduate with either the Bachelor of Arts or the Bachelor of Science in Engineering.

 The Graduate School at Princeton University offers advanced degrees across the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences and engineering. Doctoral education is offered in all disciplines and master's degree programmes are tendered in the academic areas of architecture, engineering, finance, public affairs and public policy.

The application process for the undergraduate programmes at Princeton University starts in mid-August and ends on 1st January the following year. For the graduate admissions, there are multiple deadlines during the month of December, each associated with a different amount of application fee.

University of California, Berkeley

The University of California, Berkeley, popularly termed as the UC Berkley is the flagship campus of University of California that was chartered in 1868. UC Berkeley today occupies a 1,232 acre campus with a sylvan 178-acre central core on the eastern side of the San Francisco Bay in California.

What contributes in making UC Berkeley a leading university in USA is its pool of faculty, alumni and researchers that consist of 72 Nobel Prize winners, 9 Wolf Prize recipients, 7 Fields Medallists, 15 Turing Award winners, 45 MacArthur Fellows, 20 Academy Award winners and 11 Pulitzer Prize winners. University of California, Berkeley and its researchers are associated with six chemical elements of the periodic table and the Berkeley Lab has discovered 16 chemical elements in total – more than any other university in the world.

University of California, Berkeley is divided into 14 colleges and schools, most of which are subdivided into departments. It consists of 130 academic departments and more than 80 interdisciplinary research units. The most popular majors pursued by UC Berkeley students are:

  • Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
  • Political Science
  • Molecular and Cell Biology
  • Environmental Science, Policy and Management
  • Economics

For UC Berkeley, the undergraduate admission application process starts on 1st of October and ends on 30th of November. For graduate programmes, while most of the courses have their application deadlines in the month of December, few courses can be applied to till January or February 1st week.

University of Chicago

University-of-ChicagoThe University of Chicago is a private research university located in Chicago, Illinois. The university is home to the University of Chicago Press which is the largest university press in the USA. The University of Chicago is affiliated with 89 Nobel Laureates, 49 Rhodes Scholars and 9 Fields Medallists. It was founded by the American Baptist Education Society with a donation from oil magnate and philanthropist John D. Rockefeller, incorporated in 1890, and the first classes were held in 1892.

The University of Chicago campus is known for its architectural highlights, unique traditions, notable alumni, famous dining locations, hole-in-the-wall cafes, and delightful food trucks. In addition to the adjacent Robie House by Frank Lloyd Wright, and the numerous art and history museums, the University of Chicago campus itself features a number of works by famous architects and beautiful hidden spots.

The various academic schools and Graduate Divisions at the University of Chicago are:

  • Chicago Booth School of Business
  • The College
  • Divinity School
  • Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies
  • Harris School of Public Policy Studies
  • Law School
  • Pritzker School of Medicine
  • School of Social Service Administration
  • Biological Sciences Division
  • Humanities Division
  • Physical Sciences Division
  • Social Sciences Division
  • Institute for Molecular Engineering

For undergraduate programmes, students can apply to University of Chicago till 3rd January. The graduate programmes at the university have varying application deadlines depending on the departments.

Yale University

Yale University is a private Ivy League research university located in New Haven, Connecticut. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the USA. Yale University was first established as a college to train clergy and political leaders for the Colony of Connecticut.

The Yale University is associated with 51 Nobel laureates. Its alumni include five U.S. Presidents, 19 U.S. Supreme Court Justices and many foreign heads of state.

The Yale University includes the Yale College (the undergraduate programme), the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and the professional schools. Apart from these, Yale also provides Summers Session and World Fellows Programme. The professional schools at Yale are:

  • School of Architecture
  • School of Art
  • Divinity School
  • School of Drama
  • School of Engineering & Applied Science
  • School of Forestry & Environmental Studies
  • Law School
  • School of Management
  • School of Medicine
  • School of Music
  • School of Nursing
  • School of Public Health
  • Institute of Sacred Music

With international students occupying 18% of the student pool, Yale University offers a diverse and exciting global environment. At Yale, international students are equally eligible for financial aid as are domestic students. The general application timeline for international students to apply for the Yale University in undergraduate admissions is from September to December.

University of California, Los Angeles

The University of California, Los Angeles, famously known as the UCLA is a public research university located in the Westwood neighbourhood of Los Angeles in California. It was founded in 1919 as one of the two flagship universities in the University of California system. UCLA is the most applied to university in the world with over 100,000 applications for fall 2013. The university has been labelled as one of the Public Ivies, a publicly funded university considered as providing a quality of education comparable to those of the Ivy League.

The University of California, Los Angeles, has been associated with 2 Nobel Prize winners, 12 Rhodes Scholars, more NCAA titles than any university and more Olympic medals than most nations. The UCLA student-athletes compete inter-collegiately as the Bruins, who have competed in every Olympics since 1920 with one exception in 1924, and have won a gold medal in every Olympics that the United States has participated in since 1932.

UCLA offers more than 5,000 courses in 109 academic departments. Some of the popular departments are:

  • Architecture and Urban Design
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Economics
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Management
  • Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
  • Political Science
  • Psychology
  • Sociology

Prospective undergraduate students need to apply to UCLA between 1st and 30th November. For graduate programmes, most departments have their application deadline in November or early December.

Columbia University

Another top university in the United States is the Columbia University. It is an American private Ivy League research university located in the Morningside Heights neighbourhood of Upper Manhattan in New York City. Columbia University is the oldest institution of higher learning in the State of New York. The university was founded in 1754 as King's College by royal charter of George II of Great Britain.

Columbia University annually administers the Pulitzer Prize. The university proudly boasts of its affiliation with 101 Nobel Prize laureates in the form of its students, faculty or staff. Columbia University was the first school in the United States to grant M.D. degree. Its alumni include five founding fathers of the United States, nine Justices of the United States Supreme Court, 20 living billionaires, 26 Academy Award winners and 29 heads of state, including three United States Presidents.

The various academic schools at the Columbia University are:

  • Architecture, Planning & Preservation
  • Arts
  • Graduate School of Arts & Sciences
  • Barnard College
  • Business
  • College of Physicians and Surgeons
  • Columbia College
  • Continuing Education
  • Dental Medicine
  • Engineering Undergraduate and Graduate
  • General Studies
  • International & Public Affairs
  • Jewish Theological Seminary
  • Journalism
  • Law
  • Nursing
  • Public Health
  • Social Work
  • Teachers College
  • Union Theological Seminary

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Questions related to United States of America

Showing 28 out of 28 Questions

What is the Working hours of Neurosurgeons in the United States?

Deepshikha Student Expert 30th Mar, 2020
A neurosurgeon can be understood as a a physician who specializes in the diagnosis and surgical treatment of disorders of the central and peripheral nervous system.
Coming to your question, neurosurgeons or any doctor for that matter, has no fixed schedule. Sometimes they have to work throughout the day without any rest. A doctor's time is for the patient.
The schedule is different for different doctors depending upon the hospital he works in or the number pf patients.
Hope this helps.
Good luck.

Compared to working conditions among India and the USA, who has better one for Neurosurgeons?

Prakarsh Kaushik 30th Mar, 2020


USA is far more developed than India. They have better hospitals, medical equipment, and their doctors and nurses are well-trained. India is densely populated and the conditions of Government Hospitals is not good.

Salary of Neurosurgeons is comparatively high in USA than India. Also the working hours of a Neurosurgeon is more and hectic in USA than India.

So, Overall USA is a better choice to work for a neurosurgeon though the working hours are more but for that you will be paid more.

Hope this was helpful


What is the cost to become a Neurosurgeon in the USA after completing MBBS in India?

Animesh Vats Student Expert 27th Mar, 2020


Well after doing MBBS in India you will have to clear USMLE levels to qualify for medical practice in USA and then the hardest part is to get a residency cause the residency position is limited and international students getting it has very less chances. If you get one then you will work as a resident and will train yourself selecting your specialisation.

I hope my answer helps.

All the best.


What is the Working hours of Neurosurgeons in the USA?

Shaurya Kapoor 22nd Mar, 2020

Neurologists can work in hospitals or in private offices. Their average week is approximately 40 hours . If you go into this career and would like to maintain consistent hours , then opening up a private practice or working in a research or medical school may be better for you.


Are Neurosurgeons rich in the USA?

Suryashis Chakraborty 22nd Mar, 2020

Hello Raja,

Neurosurgeons happen to be the most highest paid physicians (physician careers are the highest paid among all occupations). Neurosurgery attracts only the finest in the medical field and the job is very demanding in terms of time and handling of the cases resulting in scarcity of neurosurgeons.

The MGMA Physician Compensation Report states the average neurosurgeon income at $775,968 per annum. The median income is $704,170 per annum. The lowest paid neurosurgeon earns at least $350,000 annually while the top 10 percent make up to $1,229,881 a year.

Hope this helps you. We wish you the best for your future endeavours!


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