Preparing for Graduate School
Prepare During Your Freshman Year
- Explore your interests and abilities.
- Talk to and visit your academic support system, including advisors, counselors, professors, and other graduate students.
- Develop effective study habits and time-management skills.
- Attend workshops, tutorials, guest speaker events and campus presentations.
- Establish a GPA of at least 3.0.
Prepare During Your Sophomore Year
- Define and establish your personal, life, and career goals.
- Meet and talk with contacts in your chosen area.
- Identify potential mentoring relationships with professors and other graduate students.
- Conduct independent research with a professor.
- Attend graduate and professional school fairs and research presentations.
Prepare During Your Junior Year
Committing and preparing
- Continue to define and reestablish personal, life, and career goals.
- Strengthen mentoring relationships.
- Discuss your interests with professors, peers, and other individuals in your interest area.
- Explore different types of graduate programs.
- Visit campuses and departments when possible.
- Research standardized tests, test dates and required fees.
- Participate in a summer research internship or other experience opportunity.
Prepare During Your Senior Year
Applying and selecting
- Take standardized tests (GRE, MCAT, LSAT, etc).
- Apply early. Electronic applications are standard for most programs and universities.
- Inquire about deadlines and other important dates.
- Stay organized.
- Applying to graduate programs is time- and labor-intensive: build an organizational system to keep each application together.
- Initiate and maintain funding opportunities, like RAs, TAs, GAs, scholarships, grants, etc.
- Apply for financial aid (FAFSA) and other external funding opportunities.