All About Pursuing a STEM Degree Abroad: Scope, Advantages, Job Prospects

 logo

Cyril Zachariah
Updated on Apr 12, 2023 12:27 PM IST

STEM degree programs are among the top courses opted by international students owing to the scope, advantages and job opportunities they offer. Know all about studying STEM courses abroad here.

All About Pursuing a STEM Degree Abroad: Scope, Advantages, Job Prospects

Among all courses that international students opt to study abroad, STEM courses are the most preferred choices. STEM degree programmes are the courses offered by various universities and colleges in the field of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Several academic disciplines fall under the STEM category of Astronomy, Aerospace Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Computer Science, Mathematics, Biology, Statistics, etc.

Although STEM is the most preferred course to study abroad, many aspirants get discouraged quite easily to pursue it from an abroad university owing to various reasons like lack of appropriate information, cost of study, the fear of additional semesters for programme completion, etc. However, what STEM aspirants miss out on are the advantages of studying STEM courses from abroad universities.

If you are interested in pursuing a STEM course from abroad then the following information will help you to be sure about your choices and guide you to choose the STEM course and country for higher studies.

Related Reads: 

Top Countries to Study MS in Computer Science

Top Countries to Study a STEM Degree

Stay Back Period and Post Study Work Visa for STEM vs Non STEM Courses

STEM vs STEAM: Which one should you choose?

Highlights of Studying a STEM Degree Abroad

Given below in the table is an overview of studying a STEM degree abroad:

Particulars Details

STEM Full Form

Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics

Programme Level

Undergraduate and Graduate

Popular Specialisations in STEM

Petroleum Engineering, Computer Engineering, Mathematics and Statistics, Aerospace Engineering, Nuclear Engineering, Software Development, etc.

Top Countries for STEM

USA, UK, Canada, Australia, Germany, etc.

Eligibility Criteria

For Bachelors - 10+2 in Science stream

For Masters - Bachelor in a relevant field

Admission Tests

For Bachelors - SAT or ACT

For Masters - GRE

Average Tuition Fee

USD 65,000-80,000 per programme

Top Recruiters

The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Deloitte, Coles Group, IBM, Amazon, Google

Average Salary

USD 87,258 per annual

Explore the Best Foreign Universities Offering STEM Courses!

Advantages of Studying STEM Courses Abroad

Over the past few years, there has been a steep rise in the number of students showing interest in pursuing STEM courses from abroad. One of the reasons is that various countries have noticed the lack of qualified graduates who can combat the shortfall of the capable workforce which led them to invite students from all across the world to opt for STEM degree programmes offered at universities or colleges.

According to the National Science Foundation of the United States of America, now is the right time to develop STEM capabilities in students beyond a level that met the needs of a highly technological and information-based society.

Every activity we do revolves around Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, which is why the importance of STEM courses has been noticed by students, professionals, entrepreneurs, scientists and technologists from across the globe. Most experts state that students should be allowed to explore STEM and its concepts to enable them to become passionate and push them to take up a job in a STEM field.

The other advantages why you can consider applying for a STEM degree abroad are as follows:

  • STEM degrees abroad introduce students to the latest technologies from the very beginning which train them to look for ingenious solutions when they confront real-world problems.

  • Students are taught by trained experts and academicians who are passionate about their areas of study and are not showing up just for their paychecks. This passion rubs off on the students, benefiting them immensely in future.

  • Students do not have to wait for a certain period to start applying their knowledge. They are allowed to start working immediately after obtaining their degrees as they are encouraged to Learn by Doing instead of simply following lectures and books.

  • STEM jobs are highly competitive and even during a pandemic crisis like Covid-19, finding a job means standing out from the crowd. An international STEM degree means the candidates bring a variety of qualities to the table such as the ability to work on a global scale, communicate cross-culturally, be comfortable in travelling, etc. Such attributes are more valued by companies which offer international STEM degree holders an edge over their competitors/peers.

  • In today's world, companies have become more open-minded and thus they work with various international agencies to stay ahead in the neck-and-neck race. The whispers about creativity and innovation have now become louder. Today, wherever talks regarding innovation and creativity pop up, STEM field professionals are always included. International experience for STEM students always paves the way for making connections and growing a network.

Admission Requirements for STEM Courses Abroad

Candidates looking to earn STEM degrees from foreign universities must be aware of certain things in the first place. Firstly, the prerequisites and admission process for STEM course varies country-wise. Secondly, the requirements are different for graduate and undergraduate degrees.

Admission Requirements for Bachelors in STEM Abroad

Following is the procedure to apply for STEM courses at the undergraduate level:

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Must have passed 10+2 in Science stream with PCM or PCB (Physics, Chemistry, Maths/Biology) from a recognised board of education. Biology is mandatory for Biotechnology courses.

  • Must have taken the SAT and obtained a minimum of 1200 on the test. However, some universities have gone test-optional amid the pandemic.

  • Must have taken one of the accepted English language proficiency tests such as the IELTS Academic, PTE Academic, or TOEFL.

  • Must have obtained no less than 6 on the IELTS, 80 on the TOEFL or 50 on the PTE Academic.

Application Process:

  • The first step towards applying for a STEM degree admission is to take entrance exams like the SAT and TOEFL or IELTS.

  • Apply to universities according to their fee, scholarships, entrance exam scores accepted, experience and various other criteria.

  • Submit all the important documents.

  • Send the entrance test scores to the university.

  • Write your statement of purpose (SOP) with a little bit of research about the university you are applying to and explain why you wish to take admission to the programme (your choice of STEM programme) offered by the University.

  • Submit your admission application request and wait until feedback is received from the University regarding the same.

Documents Required:

Admission Requirements for Masters in STEM Abroad

Following is the procedure to apply for STEM courses at the postgraduate level:

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Must hold a bachelor's degree in a relevant field such as a three-year bachelor's degree in Science honours for programs in Science; a four-year bachelor's degree in any technological or related field for programs in Technology; four-year Bachelor's degree in any Engineering or related field for programs in Engineering; and three-year bachelor's degree in Mathematics for programs in Mathematics.

  • Must have obtained a minimum GPA of 2.75 on a 4.0 scale with Bachelor's degree.

  • Must have taken the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) although not all grad schools ask for GRE scores.

  • Must have taken accepted English proficiency tests among the TOEFL, IELTS or PTE Academic.

  • Must have obtained no less than 6 on the IELTS, 80 on the TOEFL or 50 on the PTE Academic.

  • Many universities also require STEM applicants to have work or teaching experience in the field.

Application Process:

  • Shortlist universities and check their respective eligibility criteria.

  • Take the required exams including the GRE, TOEFL, IELTS and/or PTE Academic.

  • Apply to the universities.

  • Submit all the required documents and pay the required application fee.

  • After being accepted, which will be notified through your registered email, apply for scholarships, and education loans and sort your finances.

  • Apply for a visa.

Want to Apply to Popular Universities Offering STEM Courses Abroad?

Documents Required:

  • Letter of recommendation (3 x Nos)

  • Degree/Provisional Degree

  • Mark sheets/academic transcripts

  • Passport

  • SOP

  • Updated CV

  • Employment certificate, if any

  • Test score reports

Top 5 Countries to Study a STEM Degree

With almost all countries recognising the importance of STEM education, it can get a little confusing to decide which country to select to pursue a STEM degree. Here are the top countries to study STEM degrees:

Country 

No. of Int’l Students Enrolled

Annual Tuition Fee

Annual Salary Offered

United States

5,12,200

USD 25,000-55,000

USD 54,000-96,000

United Kingdom

1,62,420

GBP 10,000-48,000

GBP 38,000-75,000

Canada 

1,34,664

CAD 15,000-40,000

CAD 43,000-58,500

Australia 

4,36,000

AUD 28,000-64,000

AUD 89,374

Germany 

3,07,000

EUR 8,000-12,000

EUR 44,000-60,000

Top STEM Specialisations Abroad

With a wide spectrum of STEM majors offered at top universities in the world, finding the ideal course for you can be taxing. Here are the top 10 STEM specialisations with the highest demand across the world:

STEM Course

Entry-level Education

Median Annual Salary

Petroleum Engineering

Bachelors

$137,330

Computer Engineering

Bachelors

$116,780

Mathematics

Masters

$111,110

Aerospace Engineering

Bachelors

$118,610

Nuclear Science & Engineering

Bachelors

$116,140

Software Development

Bachelors

$110,140

Chemical Engineering

Bachelors

$108,540

Management Science

Bachelors

$86,200

Biological Sciences

Bachelors

$89,910

Microbiology

Bachelors

$84,400

Popular Universities Abroad Offering STEM Courses

Now that we know the top 5 countries for international students to pursue STEM courses abroad, let us look at the list of top-ranked universities from around the world to pursue STEM degrees: 

Popular STEM Universities Abroad 

Country 

QS World University Rankings by Subject 2023

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

USA 

Engineering & Technology: 1

Life Sciences & Medicine: =4

Natural Sciences: 2

Stanford University

USA 

Engineering & Technology: 2

Life Sciences & Medicine: =4

Natural Sciences: 4

Harvard University

USA

Engineering & Technology: 8

Life Sciences & Medicine: 1

Natural Sciences: 1

University of Cambridge

UK

Engineering & Technology: 3

Life Sciences & Medicine: 6

Natural Sciences: 3

University of Oxford

UK

Engineering & Technology: 4

Life Sciences & Medicine: 2

Natural Sciences: 5

Imperial College London

UK

Engineering & Technology: 6

Life Sciences & Medicine: 7

Natural Sciences: 9

University of Toronto

Canada 

Engineering & Technology: 27

Life Sciences & Medicine: 13

Natural Sciences: 23

University of British Columbia

Canada 

Engineering & Technology: 33

Life Sciences & Medicine: 22

Natural Sciences: 17

McGill University

Canada 

Engineering & Technology: =41

Life Sciences & Medicine: 26

Natural Sciences: =41

The University of New South Wales (UNSW Sydney)

Australia 

Engineering & Technology: 49

Life Sciences & Medicine: =54

Natural Sciences: 87

The University of Melbourne

Australia 

Engineering & Technology: =50

Life Sciences & Medicine: 20

Natural Sciences: =46

The University of Sydney

Australia 

Engineering & Technology: =80

Life Sciences & Medicine: 25

Natural Sciences: =70

Technical University of Munich

Germany

Engineering & Technology: 28

Life Sciences & Medicine: =80

Natural Sciences: 28

RWTH Aachen University

Germany 

Engineering & Technology: =55

Life Sciences & Medicine: =268

Natural Sciences: 85

Technische Universität Dresden

Germany 

Engineering & Technology: =97

Life Sciences & Medicine: =209

Natural Sciences: =117

How to Choose the Right STEM Course and College Abroad? 

It is true that selecting a degree programme that matches your planned job path will help you achieve your professional goals. STEM degrees are one such field of study that may assist you in developing key skills for a variety of jobs. Here are some important tips to be considered by international students who are aspiring to pursue STEM courses abroad:

Step 1: Reflect Upon Your Passion, Interests and Skills 

Before enrolling in a degree programme, it might be good to be aware of your unique interests. While bachelor's programmes may enable you to pursue your major after finishing general education requirements, other degree programmes frequently require you to choose your path of study upon applying. Consider your academic knacks and explore different fields of interest before determining in which subject you should pursue your STEM degree. Mechanical engineers, for example, frequently employ high mathematical skills, so if you enjoy math, a STEM degree in Mathematics may be an excellent choice for you.

Step 2: Choose a Field of Study and a Degree Path 

Your degree path may be influenced by the STEM field you choose to pursue, as employees of the same institution may have varied educational backgrounds based on their job duties. A medical technician, for instance, could require an associate's degree, although doctors often hold both a bachelor's and a medical degree. While choosing the type of STEM degree to pursue, you can also take into account your other factors. Some STEM graduates start out with an associate's or bachelor's STEM degree, gain experience and expertise, and then decide if they want to pursue a graduate STEM degree for future progress.

Step 3: Research About Different Universities Abroad 

Each university abroad that is offering STEM programmes often has a homepage with information on admissions standards, a course catalogue, and details regarding financial assistance. While some programmes include on-campus instruction, others are entirely online or hybrid. You could also learn about the professional placement or internship chances for students in a certain programme. You may get the best programme that suits your career objectives by learning about various different ones.

Top STEM Scholarships for International Students

Universities across the world offer scholarships to students applying for a STEM degree. Let us look at a few of them:

Name of Scholarship

Country

Value

Arkwright Engineering Scholarships

UK

600 personal financial award

400 school financial award

IET Awards and Scholarships

UK

INR 500,000

Imperial College London PhD Scholarships in Chemical Engineering

UK

Fully Funded

Toptal Scholarship

-

$10,000

Women Techmakers Scholars Program scholarships

-

$10,000

AfterCollege STEM Inclusion Scholarship

USA

$500 each

AFCEA Educational Foundation Scholarship

USA

STEM Major Scholarship ($2,500)

Undergraduate Diversity Scholarship ($3,000)

Cyber Security Scholarship ($5,000)

Society of Women Engineers Scholarships

-

Fully Funded

Palantir Women in Technology Scholarship

-

Up to $10,000

Scope of Studying STEM Courses Abroad

Based on the degree completed under STEM, one can apply for different job roles in the STEM field. Following are some of the popular job roles along with the average salary offered in countries like the USA, Canada and the UK:

STEM Jobs

Average Salary in USA (in USD)

Average Salary in UK (in GBP)

Average Salary in Canada (in CAD)

Statistician

75,546/-

31,743/-

68,791/-

Electrical Engineer

75,752/-

32,087/-

69,479/-

Chemist

56,442/-

24,870/-

53,535/-

Mechanical Engineer

70,846/-

31,377/-

65,410/-

Web Developer

59,578/-

25,457/-

53,292/-

Information Security Analyst

72,078/-

33,045/-

69,904/-

Systems Software Developer

1,09,890/-

31,189/-

70,281/-

Astronomer

88,950/-

45,000/-

98,076/-

Physicist

93,711/-

34,559/-

77,888/-

Mathematician

70,820/-

39,037/-

48,696/-

It is not the most compelling argument, but if you want to study abroad and work in the STEM industry once you graduate, there are not many options to travel once you have graduated and are fully employed. Although education may be difficult and time-consuming, the professional world can be much more so, making your college years excellent for studying abroad if you are interested. Take advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to go abroad and have it count towards your degree, all while gaining vital cultural and life experiences.

For more information on STEM courses and admissions to universities abroad, you can write to us at abroad@collegedekho.com.

Seek FREE Guidance to Studying Abroad?

FAQs

Do international students require professional or work experience to pursue a master's degree in STEM abroad?

The United Kingdom, as well as several European nations, such as Germany, France, Sweden, Ireland, and the Netherlands, offer preference to candidates having at least two years of work experience. Although some institutions allow individuals with no job experience, it is preferable to get some related professional experience before applying to the best universities. There is no minimum level of professional experience necessary to study STEM in the United States, Canada, Australia, or New Zealand.

Which country is the best place to pursue STEM courses for international students?

The United States, sometimes known as "the land of opportunity," offers its students with the best education available anywhere in the world. American universities are also noted for having high academic standards, adhering to rigorous policies to preserve quality, and being well-supported in order to provide their students with a good education. According to the QS global ranking 2023, the United States has more than 25 of the top 100 institutions. Besides being home to some of the best institutions in the world that continuously rank in the World University Rankings, the US offers 3 years of stay-back period to STEM graduates.

Why should you pursue STEM courses abroad?

Pursuing STEM courses abroad is not just a trend that we are noticing in today’s time. Gone are the days when knowledge was everything. In today's world, you need not only to understand your topic but also to have a good understanding of its practical applicability. You must be able to connect concepts from many sectors and employ inventive strategies that will guide you along the path of creativity. As a result, the goal here is to develop young minds from an early age. To motivate students to question pre-set notions, challenge what is already established, and uncover the unknown, rather than merely transfer information and turn them into products of a conservative education system that promotes cramming and prioritises excellent grades.

Does STEM education offer better job opportunities to international students?

Various countries throughout the world, including the United States, Ireland, and New Zealand, are making it easier for STEM graduates to find jobs. In Ireland, for example, you can work and remain for two years after graduation, and eventually, apply for Permanent Residency. Additionally, while studying at STEM universities, students get the opportunity to use cutting-edge technology and intern or work with industry giants like Google, Tesla, and Netflix.

What are the exams required to pursue STEM courses abroad?

Certain standardised exams must be passed with a minimum score acceptable to international colleges for STEM programmes. Scores may differ based on the university's admission requirements. Some of these tests that are a part of the eligibility criteria of universities abroad to pursue STEM courses include the following:

  • Aptitude Tests like SAT or ACT for bachelors and GRE or GMAT for masters

  • English Proficiency Tests like IELTS Academic, TOEFL, PTE Academic, Duolingo, etc.

You can share this post!

Admission Open 2024

Cranfield University

Cranfield, United Kingdom

Related Articles

Aug 18, 2023 04:28 PM IST

How to Apply for Masters in USA?

Aug 03, 2023 01:18 PM IST

Documents Required for TOEFL

Our Study Abroad Offerings

Popular Universities to StudyAbroad

Planning to study abroad?

Interested in Studying Overseas?

Connect with us and kickstart your learning journey for a rewarding experience!

By proceeding ahead you expressly agree to the CollegeDekhoAbroad Terms of Use & Privacy Policy.