Graduate and Professional School Planning Timeline
Spring of Junior Year
- Begin asking faculty, advisors and professionals about graduate programs in your field.
- Identify and read professional journals in the field. Learn as much as you can about the current research.
- Identify the leading researchers and institutions for your field of interest.
- Visit the Office of Career Services for information on graduate and professional school programs.
- Develop as many options as you can; then eliminate some by researching them before you leave for the summer.
- Register and prepare for graduate admission tests.
- Call or write the remaining schools on your list for applications and program information.
- Look over the materials you receive and continue narrowing your list.
- Contact admissions offices for information on acceptance rates, test scores and GPA ranges.
- Ask for information on placement rates and typical employers for each program.
- Talk to professionals in the field regarding their research and employment opportunities.
- Identify alumni currently enrolled or recently graduated from the program and contact them.
- Begin writing your personal statement, which must be modified for each school.
- If you haven’t done so, register and prepare for admission tests.
- When school starts, finish narrowing your list of schools.
- Begin asking for letters of recommendation.
- Continue working on your personal statement.
- Check on application deadlines and rolling or early admissions policies.
- Read the applications thoroughly and prepare any other materials requested.
- For medical, dental or law school register with the appropriate application and data assembly service.
- Submit completed applications for any early decision programs.
- Prepare for and take graduate admissions exams if you haven’t done so already.
- Contact schools to schedule visits during the fall semester.
- Continue to gather and complete the necessary application materials.
- Continue to send applications, paying close attention to deadlines.
- A good rule of thumb is to submit your applications by Thanksgiving break or shortly thereafter.
- Follow up with graduate schools to confirm that all necessary application materials have arrived.