Featured Graduate School Programs

DID YOU KNOW?

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in the Fall of 2014 -- 25% of graduate students were enrolled in exclusively online courses![a]

Is an online graduate degree right for you?

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Should I Go to Grad School? 4 Reasons Why Going To Graduate School May Benefit You!

There are several nuanced reasons why people may choose to attend grad school, but according to Aslanian Market Research, one tried and true theme remains constant. In their most recent study it remained unchanged that the primary driver for online students seeking to further their education is for career related reasons. More than 75% of respondents to their study cited career as their motivative.[vi]

Below are 4 reasons why going to graduate school may benefit you.

  1. Differentiate yourself as a Specialist

    While a profession may not require an advanced degree, it may be helpful to advance or to distinguish oneself from the pack. Some people may choose to specialize in certain areas of a particular subject such as a Master of Accountancy (MAcc) or a Masters of Taxation (MTax), MS in Strategic Human Resource Management (MSSHRM), an MS or a MHA in Gerontology just to name a few.[i]

  2. Potential Salary Increase

    While advancing in a field could sometimes lead to higher pay, attending and completing grad school also has the potential to increase a person’s earning potential in certain fields.[ii]For example, in the education field, the level of education one obtains could determine the pay scale they are on in combination with the number of years one has worked.[iii]

    If you are considering this reason, be very careful to weigh the costs (including the loss of earnings if you are enrolled full time) with your potential salary after graduation. In particular, research the career center of the program you are interested in, to get a feel for the job opportunities available.

    Going to Graduate School PAYS!

  3. Requirement for Employment

    For some occupations, in order to even be considered for employment, an applicant must hold a graduates degree in their respective area. This is not only applicable for doctors and lawyers, but for professions such as Physical Therapists, Counselors, Psychologists, Occupational Therapists, and Social Workers.[iv] In education, a teacher cannot become an administrator without earning a Supervisors Certificate or a MA in Educational Leadership.[i]

  4. Career Change

    According to Aslanian market Research, this is the #1 reason for continuing education[vi]. Despite an individual's level of educational attainment, very few people stay in the same career throughout their entire work life. Reasons for changes vary from being laid off, burn out, or change of interest. However, when the time comes to look for a new opportunity, one's past experience may not be relevant enough to switch careers without training.

    Fortunately, most programs do not require an applicant to have majored in the same content area. This makes it easier for someone to pursue a graduate school program in a new field as long as they at least hold a bachelor's degree. Some do however have prerequisites that a student must take before matriculating; nursing is a great example here.

    There are direct entry MSN programs where the applicant does not need a BSN but might need to complete prerequisite math and science academic courses in order to have the foundation to handle the rigors of the program.

Graduate School Advice

If you're interested in learning more about what it means to be a graduate student, or you are interested in finding out more about financing options, check out our grad advice articles. We have enlisted the services of several subject matter experts to help us bring you information and tips about the application process, and how to survive and thrive once you enroll in a graduate school.

MBA Grad School Scholarship for Graduate Students

Exclusive MBA Scholarship

Looking for a way to pay for your Education? Be sure to check out our exclusive $1000 scholarship. Enter by submitting a very short essay question. Read Article
Letter of intent for grad school

How to Write a Letter of Intent

Pay close attention to the letter of intent as they are one of your only opportunities to present who you are! Read Article
Grad School Interview Questions

Interview Questions Grad Schools will ask you

Your grad school interview can make or break your application. Show ‘em what a stellar candidate you are by preparing your answers to some of the more commonly asked questions by colleges and universities. Read Article
Paying for Graduate School - Graduate Student Loans

Paying for Graduate School

Federal Perkins Loans are awarded to students with grave financial needs determined by the FAFSA. The definition of need... Read Article
Graduate Fellowships and Fellowships for Graduate Students

Types of Fellowships

One of the many challenges current students face is obtaining the funding needed to pay for tuition, fees and living expenses. Fortunately, there... Read Article
Graduate Student Loans and Assistantships

Student Loans & Assistantships

Need advice on how to borrow money for grad school, how much to plan to borrow and how to manage the loan process? These articles will... Read Article
Applying to Graduate School

Applying to Graduate Schools

So you have decided graduate school is right for you and you have taken your standardized test. Now it is time to prepare your application. Most... Read Article
Getting Recommendation Letters for Graduate School

Getting Recommendation Letters

Applying for grad school can be tedious and nerve-wrecking, and perhaps the worst step is getting good recommendation letters. But... Read Article
Master's vs PhD Degree - Which Is Right For You?

Master's vs PhD

If you are considering continued education after your undergraduate education, you might wonder what the differences are between the MA and the PhD. Read Article
Writing Your Personal Statement for Graduate School

Writing Your Personal Statement

As you gather application materials for grad schools, you will be required to include a written statement as part of the process. These... Read Article

Browse Popular Graduate Degrees and Programs

Business Administration & Management

Business

Psychology

Psychology

Social Work

Social Work

Education Leadership & Administration

Education Leadership & Administration

Healthcare Administration & Management

Healthcare Administration Management

Sports Management

Sports Management

ESL/TESOL

ESL/TESOL

Organizational Psychology

Organizational Psychology

Communications & Public Relations

Communications & Public Relations

Nursing

Nursing

Computer Science

Computer Science

Graphic Design

Graphic Design

DID YOU KNOW?

According to a recent study done by Aslanian Market Research, the top 3 Graduate Majors are: Business Administration, Computer Science & Engineering and Nursing.

Are you ready to start your Grad School journey?

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What is Grad School?

Ok let's take a step back for just a moment and take the time to define what graduate school is. Simply said, a grad school is a college or university that offers students programs at a higher level of education than a bachelors degree. Some schools focus only on the graduate level, while others offer separate 'schools' for graduate and undergraduate work. The purpose of attending a grad school is to earn a graduate degree. 

A graduate degree is often referred to as 'postbaccalaureate', meaning a degree that you earn after your bachelors degree. A graduate degree is intended to focus a student more in on a specific subject area, to become more knowledgeable and specialized. 

Finding the Right Graduate Program

Making the decision to go to graduate school is no easy task. You will have to ask yourself a lot of questions, such as: "Do I want to earn a master's degree or PhD?" "What field of study interests me most?" "What course of academic study will help me reach my long-term career goals?" "How can I pay for this?" Since 1996 our team has been working to compile the most comprehensive listing for prospective students.

This site offers a large list of graduate schools! Thousands of options at hundreds of colleges and universities, across masters degree programs, PhD programs, and certificate programs.

GradSchools.com helped more than 6.4 million students research programs last year. You can use our degree finder above to get matched to your perfect grad school program. Or you can search our directory of 70,000 programs for  programs by subject area, program format, and location.

When you find programs you are interested in select the "request info" button next to the university, fill out our simple form and your information will be sent to counselors at that college or university. Then those counselors will contact you with more information about their academic program. 

Types of Graduate Programs

There are two main types of graduate degrees. That being the Masters Degree and the other being a PhD. Within those degrees there are different nuances which further distinguish degree types. For example, some degree types are course and lecture based while others are research based.

Research based programs are more independent and require the student to conduct their own research projects in a specialized area. Primarily you will find that most research degrees are at the doctoral level, however there are a few masters programs out there such as the Master of Research (MRes). 

Each type of degree also offers further distinction typically based on the subject or career being pursued. And even within a subject there can be different degree options available.  

Masters Programs: Require the completion of a bachelor's and typically take one to two years of full time study to complete. Common types of degrees are the Masters of Arts (MA) and Master of Science (MS), which can be applied to a wide range of content areas. Other common types at a more subject oriented level would include the MBA, Master of Fine Arts (MFA), and Master of Social Work (MSW).  

If we take a look at a subject such as Education, you can also see that there are several different types of degrees available within a subject such as the M.Ed. M.S.I, M.A.T. or M.Ad.Ed., just to name a few. 

Doctorate Programs: Even though most research based programs are doctoral programs there are still professional degrees offered at this level. Examples of research based degrees would be Doctor of Theology (ThD) or Doctor of Education (Ed.D.). Examples of professional degrees would be Doctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P.), Doctor of Jurisprudence (J.D.) or Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)

Time to complete a doctoral program varies by institution and type of degree, however it is typical that a doctorate degree program can take about 4 to 6 years to complete after the Bachelors degree. If you already old a Masters degree in that subject area it may be possible to complete your doctorate in about 3-years of full-time study.

Certificate Programs: Though not a 'type' of graduate degree, a certificate program offers many students the opportunity to gain advanced training in a specific area. They are not often required to pursue a position per se, but give alumnus added credentials that make them more marketable to future employers as well as become specialists in certain areas within their field.

Grad School Requirements

Once an applicant has built their list of grad schools to apply to, the application process is fairly similar to the college admissions process. 

  1. When considering graduate school, the first thing one must do is identify which entrance exam they must take. Unlike applying to college where either the SAT or ACT is accepted at all institutions, graduate school programs require different entrance exams based on the type of program one is applying to. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is a general skills standardized test similar to the SAT. Like the SAT there are Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, and Analytical Writing sections each scored on a 200-800 point scale.

    For more specialized graduate programs, specific subject-related entrance exams are required such as the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) for business, Law Admissions Test (LSAT) for Law, and the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) to attend a medical university or college.
     
  2. Determine if the school you are interested in requires that exam. There are schools and programs that do not require GREs or GMATs. 
     
  3. Determine what GPA requirements there may be. Certain subjects may require specific GPA levels. There are also some schools which have no GPA requirements. 
     
  4. Fill out the application online and send your undergraduate transcript, personal essay, and letter of recommendations. 
     
  5. If an applicant passes the paper round then they are often times brought in for an interview round. These interviews may be one-on-one or in groups. Many times graduate work involves extensive research and the admissions committee wants to ensure that a graduate student will work well with others in their respective departments.
i. state.nj.us/education/educators/license/sl/ | ii. bls.gov/emp/ep_chart_001.htm | iii. uft.org/new-teachers/moving-pay-scale | iv. careerplanning.about.com/od/exploringoccupations/tp/hi_growth_mast.htm | v. nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=27 |   vi. Aslanian Market Research 2016 Online College Students  a. nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=80