Pursuing Graduate Study

Graduate School Application Process

If you are interested in graduate school, it is best to start preparing in your junior year for the application process. Click here to download a PowerPoint about Successful Graduate School Applications

Why Attend Graduate School?

  • You have a clarity of purpose in career and personal goals.
  • You understand how a graduate degree fits with your goals.
  • You understand what a graduate degree will do for you, such as a professional license, marketability, advancement in a field, or to teach in higher education.

Bad Reasons To Choose Graduate School

  • You don't know what else to do.
  • To avoid going to work.
  • To please others that want you to go.
  • Because you have good standardized test scores.

How To Choose A Graduate Program

  • Good advisor in your specialty. Your advisor generally becomes a very important mentor to you as you complete graduate school.
  • Make sure program has classes in your specialty.
  • Be sure to check what application pre-requisites might be required and that you meet them.
  • Be sure they have good research facilities, an adequate library, and the accessibility of the faculty.
  • Try to find out the reputation of both the faculty and the program.
  • Geographical considerations.

Application Timetable

  • Start researching graduate school programs in your junior year, if still a student. Generally, 1 1/2 years before you want to start program.
  • Take the standardized tests about 1 year before you want to start.
  • Get letters of recommendation and complete applications about 8 months to a year before you want to start. Base this timeline on the deadlines for the programs.
  • Six months before you start, verify that schools have received your application. Be sure to follow-up with programs and be proactive.

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