The US Agent Training Course (USATC)

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Welcome to the US Agent Training Course, created and developed by ICEF. The USATC is the first of its kind and supports professional development for agents specializing in the USA as a study destination.

Agents who take the USATC will acquire a firm foundation in the benefits and organization of the US education system. Agents will also gain access to resources to help international students study in the US at the most appropriate institutions and in programs that best meet their goals.

The USATC provides education agents with

  • An understanding of the reasons why the US is the world’s top study destination
  • Comprehensive knowledge of the study options and credentials available in the US, in all areas and levels of education
  • Tips on how to best prepare students for living and studying in the US
  • The knowledge and skills to work effectively with US institutions
  • The ability to provide students and their families with specialized advice

The USATC provides education agents with a general foundation in the education systems and processes in the US as they apply to international students. For information on the rules and processes of specific education institutions in the US, agents will have to conduct their own research and make direct contact. The USATC includes a helpful list of resources at the end of each section for the agent’s personal use.

The course is divided into several sections:

  • Section A: About the US
  • Section 2: The US Education System
  • Section 3: K-12 Schools in the US
  • Section 4: Intensive English Programs (IEPs) and Pathway (Bridge) Programs
  • Section 5: US Professional Education and Training (PET) Schools
  • Section 6: Community (Two-Year) Colleges
  • Section 7: Four-Year Colleges and Universities
  • Section 8: Graduate Schools and Specialized Programs
  • Section 9: The Culture of American Schools
  • Section 10: Living in the US – Practical Considerations
  • Section 11: Student Visa Information
  • Section 12: Working in the US
  • Section 13: Ethical Behavior in Recruiting
  • Section 14: Resources and Appendices

The USATC is free of charge and is delivered in a self-paced modular format.

USATC examinations are conveniently offered online, at ICEF Workshops and at international education events as advertised. An exam fee of US$350 will be charged. This fee includes 3 attempts at the final test if required.

Education agents who pass the USATC examination will receive a notification indicating that they have successfully passed and will be acknowledged with a US Course Graduate (USCG) listing on the ICEF website.

Benefits of the USATC

Education agents who wish to further their professional development and focus on the USA as a study destination should take the USATC. While they will not be officially accredited or endorsed by the US Government as a result of passing the USATC exam, agents will have their name posted on a website viewable by students across the globe.


There are no qualifications or specific language requirements for the USATC. However, English proficiency equivalent to an IELTS score of 5.0 (or TOEFL PBT 500/TOEFL iBT 61) is advisable for candidates with English as a Second Language.

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