Masters abroad: preps and steps

Fall vs Spring Intake: What is it & Which is Better for 2025?

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Yocket Editorial Team
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What is the most important factor that you should consider while applying to universities in the USA? GRE and TOEFL scores, well-drafted statements of purpose, and letters of recommendation? Definitely! But what else?

While these factors are important, the season of application is also crucial. Should you apply in the Spring, or should you wait until the Fall intake? Is there any difference between them? - If you’ve been asking these questions, you’re in luck today! In this blog, we have broken down the essentials of the Spring & Fall intakes. It discusses all the factors you need to consider and the necessary adjustments you should make while applying for a Master's in 2025.

And when you do, make sure to connect with Yocket for unbiased counseling and end-to-end guidance. Once you connect with an expert, they will evaluate your profile and suggest the best application intake for you so that you can make the most of the opportunities. Explore Yocket Premium to learn more.

Table of Contents

What is Spring Intake?

"Spring intake" is the start of a new academic semester in the month of January or February. It is becoming increasingly popular, especially for international students. "Why," you might wonder? Because of the following reasons:

  • More flexibility: Spring intake can be a good option for students who need more time to prepare for their studies abroad or who have other commitments that keep them from starting in the Fall semester.
  • Less competition: The acceptance rates for the Spring intake are often higher than for the Fall intake, as fewer students apply during this time.
  • Shorter wait: Students who apply for spring intake may receive admissions decisions more quickly than those who apply for fall intake.

What is Fall Intake?

Fall intake is the academic semester that begins in September and ends in December. It is the primary intake for most universities in the United States and other countries around the world. What are some advantages of attending university during the fall intake? They are:

  • More options: Most universities offer the widest range of courses and programs during the Fall semester.
  • Scholarships: There are more funding opportunities available for students who start their international education in the Fall.
  • Flexibility: Students starting in the fall have more time to complete their degree requirements and graduate on time.

Spring vs Fall Admissions: Factors to Consider for 2025

Although there are more than 6,000 universities in the US, most international students look at the top 100-200 when applying. About 35% of these universities do not offer admission for the spring semester. Therefore, if a candidate applies for the Spring intake, will miss out on some of the top universities. In contrast, almost every university in the USA offers admission in the fall; hence, here are a few reasons to consider the fall intakes:

  • Intake

If you feel that there’s a lot of improvement to be done on your profile, it would be wise to skip the Spring intakes. In the US, fewer students get through during the Spring semester season, and the competition is higher. 

  • Universities

As we’ve discussed above, the top US universities usually do not offer admissions for the Spring season. It is advisable to do thorough research before applying to universities in the spring semester. If you want to find the best universities that not only suit your profile, but also your budget, head to Yocket’s AI-backed too, College Finder for the best results.

What is the right time to conduct this research, you may ask? A one year timeline is suitable and also gives you enough time to prepare for standardized tests such as the IELTS, TOEFL, GRE, GMAT and others.

  • Acceptance Rates

Class sizes for the Fall semester are generally larger than those of the Spring sessions. You can expect a greater acceptance rate for the Fall semesters.

Suggested: What to do After Getting an Admit?

  • Internships

Did you know that, as an international student, you are allowed to take an internship in the USA after completing 9 months (some universities permit it after 2 semesters, while others follow 18 credits) of the Master's course? It is mandated by the law, and this proves to be quite a loss for students taking the Spring semester. Why? Here’s the reason:

The internship period lasts from June to August, and none are available during January (the Spring semester). During this time, there are mostly available  assistantships or project-building sessions instead, which do not pay any money. Recruitment faces a huge lag, and this is one of the most important reasons why Fall semesters are better than Spring.

While we are on the topic of why internships in the US are crucial, here are a few reasons: 

  1. You earn good money throughout those three months, helping fund your final two semesters.

  2. The chances of a final placement offer (if not, at least an interview opportunity) from the same company are high. This can increase your chances of working in the USA.
  • Course Options

Most universities in the US offer core courses during the Fall semester. If you enroll in the Spring session, it might hinder your coursework planning. This can indirectly affect your performance during the master's course. Finding the right projects, ideal internships and final placements is heavily dependent on the kind of subjects you choose.

  • Job Opportunities

On-campus and off-campus part-time jobs often come to the rescue if you wish to fund your education. Most on-campus jobs in the US are occupied in the Fall since many students graduate in the summer or spring. New job roles may be available if new facilities are established in the Fall.

Suggested: Highest Paying Jobs in the USA.

  • Deadlines

Spring deadlines are generally around July/August. During this time, most undergraduate college professors are occupied with the semester exams. This means that you may have to get your letters of recommendation as early as May/June, which may not always be possible. 

More time before your application will give you the oppurtunity to gather and fix all the documents. This can increases your chances of getting accepted at top universities. If you want to understand how to get into them and arrange your documents in a better manner, make sure to schedule a free profile consultation call with a Yocket’s expert.

Suggested: University Deadlines for the USA.

Spring vs Fall for 2025: Adjustments to Make

Now let’s move ahead to discuss the benefits and drawbacks of both Spring and Fall seasons. We will also discuss the adjustments and adaptations you have to make as an international student. Some factors to be mindful of include:

  • Weather

While it is natural to romanticize snowfall in the States after watching a couple of Hollywood flicks, the reality is that spring is one of the coldest months. The temperatures drop to as low as -30 degrees in the northern regions, like Michigan and Minnesota. 

The weather in other regions, too, looms over -8 to -12 degrees, which is very cold for Indians. In the past, multiple cases have been recorded where the students have come back to India because they could not adjust to the extremely cold weather in Spring.

Suggested: Cost of living in the USA for international students.

  • Groups and Projects

International students who begin their course in the Fall already spend six months more in the course, compared to those who start during the Spring intake. This makes it difficult for the latter group of people to form friendships and professional relationships. Sometimes this may lead to trouble while choosing partners for projects and other collaborative activities. 

Yocket identified this problem and built a solution for it. At Admits and Rejects, you can connect with other students who have similar interests, have visited the same university as you, and many others! So don’t let time be a constraint; meet people now!

So, Which is better: Fall intake or Spring intake?

Though no intake is better as such, but they depend on the student’s preferences, and profile. The Fall intake usually has more places to fill in than the Spring intake, hence is considered to be better on those grounds.

From the Desk of Yocket 

8 lakh Indian students move to a different country for higher education. It's important for you to make the right choices - especially in the case of selecting the intake. Should you go for the spring intake, or the fall intake? What is at at stake? 

You must know that many factors decide which intake will be the best for you. Your profile, the country and university of choice, and your overall goals. There are various advantages to both the intakes, and you must do thorough research to find out which one works the best for you. Morever, if you need time to attempt the GRE, the fall semester is a good option. On the other hand, if you're a working professional and do not have college exams to clear first, you can take a shot at the spring intake. You should also consider the university deadlines.

For a better understanding of how to make the choice between the Spring and the Fall intakes, connect with a Yocket’s expert today. When you schedule a call, an expert will thoroughly evaluate your profile. They will understand your requirements, aspirations and your budget to suggest the best courses and universities for you - and the intake! Yocket is here to make international education easy for you. So, why wait? Explore Yocket Premium right now!

Frequently Asked Questions about Spring vs Fall Intake for 2025

Do top US universities offer admissions in Spring?

Which intake should international students opt for - spring or fall?

Which intake is the best for job opportunities in the US?

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