- Research areas of interest, institutions, and programs.
- Talk to advisors about application requirements.
- Register and prepare for appropriate graduate admissions tests.
- Investigate national scholarships.
- Begin planning your references.
Summer: Fifteen Months Prior to Beginning a Graduate Program
- Take required graduate admissions tests.
- Write for application materials.
- If possible, visit schools of interest.
- Write your application essay.
- Check on application deadlines.
- For medical, dental, osteopathy, podiatry, or law school, you may need to register with the national application or data assembly service most programs use.
Fall: Twelve Months Prior to Beginning a Graduate Program
- Obtain letters of recommendation.
- Take graduate tests if you have not done so.
- Send in completed applications.
- Register for financial aid.
Spring: Six to Nine Months Prior to Beginning a Graduate Program
- Check with all institutions before the deadline to make sure that your file is complete.
- Visit institutions that accept you.
- Send a deposit to your school of choice.
- Notify other institutions that accepted you of your decision as soon as possible to allow for others to be offered admission.
- Send thank-you notes to all references and others that may have assisted in your process.