Graduate study differs from undergraduate study in that it involves becoming more specialized and focused in a particular area of interest. Graduate programs usually require not only taking additional courses, but also active participation in research study and/or practica, internships, externships and clinical experiences. Graduate study allows a student to develop specialized skills to practice in certain professions or conduct research.
Types of graduate degrees:
St Catherine University offers both Master’s and Doctoral Programs.
Whether or not to attend graduate school is a decision that deserves careful consideration. Some students pursue graduate studies simply because they lack another career focus. However, the high cost of the degree, intense workload, and low rate of completion can make graduate school a costly decision. Know the cost of the degree and calculate the return on investment. Research fellowship opportunities. Additionally, approximately 50% of doctoral students drop out before completing their degree.
As you contemplate whether or not graduate school is right for you, consider your answers to the following questions:
How to select a program that is right for you
Begin your research by consulting with people:
Continue your research by consulting reference materials. Peterson’s Graduate and Professional Programs provide a comprehensive listing including degrees offered, certifications, enrollment figures, admission and degree requirements, tuition, financial aid, housing, faculty and more Access current Peterson's guides in the Career Resource Library.
Factors to Consider as you create your list of potential schools:
One of the most crucial things for a prospective PhD student to consider is whether there will be an advisor in your department who can help you advance in your career. When evaluating potential advisors in a program look for the following: tenure/length of time in field, amount of time s/he will be able to spend with you, whether s/he is active and respected in her/his field, and his/her “clout” within the field.
The application itself may contain all or most of the following parts. Each is important. Download the guide for more tips
Timelines for admissions to Graduate and Professional Programs
Most people should start the process of preparing for an application a full year and a half before their anticipated date of undergraduate matriculation. Some scholarships have even earlier deadlines.
Most deadlines for classes entering in the fall are between January and March (of your senior year). Application deadlines can range from August (before your senior year) for early decision programs of medical schools, to late spring or summer (after your senior year) for a few programs with rolling admissions.
Grad School: Application Timeline by National Association of Colleges and Employers
The timetable below has been adapted from Peterson’s Guides to Graduate and Professional Programs: An Overview. These guides are available in the Career Development Resource Library, CdC 460.