After researching the grad schools you wish to attend, your application will probably be the most time consuming and challenging part of the process because it is contains several components:
- Transcripts are easy because all you need to do is request them from your former schools and send them to the schools for which you are applying.
- Test Scores (GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MSAT, etc.) are more time consuming and difficult as you need to study first before taking the tests.
- Essays. You should leave yourself enough time to answer the questions thoughtfully and honestly while writing your essay and making sure to proofread it thoroughly.
- Recommendations. Approach co-workers, former professors, etc., early to give them enough time to write good recommendations. Make sure the people you pick agree to write the letter and are enthusiastic to help you. Provide them with your resume or a list of your accomplishments to help them formulate your recommendation letter and incorporate those items.
Visiting Grad Schools
Visit the schools you are considering to talk with people there and get a better feel and understanding of the school. It also provides the opportunity to make a positive first impression on the faculty with your research interests and enthusiasm. Try to determine if these are people you want to work with for the next couple of years or so. Visiting the school also allows you to visit the area and check out the neighborhood, where you can go shopping, rental prices, etc.
Choosing a Grad School
The primary factors on deciding which school to attend if you have been accepted to more than one grad school is the quality of the program and faculty, the costs and financial aid provided. Do some bargaining—it can’t hurt.