The Application Process

Assembling and completing materials to support your application takes time and planning. Be sure to stay organized and pay close attention to deadlines! Make requests to appropriate offices/individuals for transcripts, reference letters and test scores several weeks in advance of deadlines to avoid last minute panic.

Most deadlines for fall admission are between January and March, however, in some graduate programs, applications are reviewed and approved as they are received. As a result, programs may be completely filled long before the application deadline. In these cases, early submission of all application materials could increase the possibility of acceptance.

Fill out all forms and applications legibly and completely. Completing forms online is recommended whenever possible. Do not leave any blanks or exclude any pertinent information. Save a copy of everything before sending in your application.

Common pieces of the application:

Letters of Recommendation (Give recommender AT LEAST one month before application deadline)

  • Ask faculty and/or supervisors of internships/jobs who are familiar with you and your talents. The best references will be from those who know you, not from the person with the most impressive title.
  • Graduate schools typically request 2-5 letters and it is suggested that at least two references be from faculty.
  • When asking someone to write a reference letter, make a point to meet in person or by phone. Discuss your plans; share a draft of your application, essay and/or resume, and a list of topics you would like addressed in the recommendation letter. Ask if they would be willing to write a letter in support of your application to graduate school. You may get a variety of responses including an enthusiastic "yes." If the person is cautious and expresses hesitation about providing a useful reference, don't push it. Identify an alternative person to approach.

Essay/Personal Statement (Allow THREE weeks to ONE month). Use faculty, the CAPE, and the Writing Program for assistance with revising your first draft.

Standardized Admission Tests:

  • Plan time to study in advance and become familiar with test material.
  • Schedule your test so that you'll have your scores in time to submit your application.

Official Transcripts request through the Registrar's Office

How Admission Decisions Are Made

There is no standard formula that graduate admissions committees follow in making admissions decisions. Many hesitate to provide specific GPA and/or test score numbers because they want to evaluate you as a whole candidate. Personal conversations, application essay, test scores and academic record are all taken into account and are considered important.

Career & Professional Education

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