From the Road Map for Graduate Study: A Guide for Prospective Graduate Students
Dr. Donald C. Martin, October 2, 2014
Check out the Video Below to view a recording of a live webinar with admissions expert Dr. Donald C. Martin where he discusses the "7 Deadly Sins of Graduate School Applicants" and answers questions from prospective graduate students.
According to admissions expert Dr. Donald C. Martin the seven deadly sins of Graduate School Applicants are:
Rude or arrogant behavior
Applicants who come across as rude, grumpy, and overly confident may find that they quickly loose favor with members of a graduate school admissions committee. The best way to communicate with any member of the institution that you wish to attend is to be cheerful, polite, and, above all else, PROFESSIONAL!
Admissions committees are very good at fact checking the claims that you make on your application. It is far better to be honest about a blemish on your record than to get caught lying about it.
Too much contact
Making an effort to make yourself available for conversation with members of the admissions committee and staff at the schools you are applying to may be a good thing. Stalking committee members is not. It is not necessary to reach out to representatives from the school everyday. Find a PROFESSIONAL communication balance and stick with it.
Not following directions
Sending wrong or non-proofed information (essays, recommendations, etc.)
An application full of careless errors is likely to land you in the reject pile. Take the time to triple check your work. Have others review it for mistakes, and make sure it is customized for the school you are applying to.
Asking questions you could answer for yourself
Questions like; "When is the application deadline?" or "Is financial aid available?" are easily answered through personal research. Make sure that you sound knowledgeable about the program you are applying to when you are interacting with representatives from the university.
Leaving something completely unaddressed, or making excuses when addressing it
If there is a blemish on your academic or professional record you should be sure to proactively acknowledge that blemish. Do not fool yourself into thinking that an admissions professional will overlook any gaps in your academic and professional history.
The stated directions in your application are not suggestions, these are the standards upon which the admissions committee wishes to evaluate applicants. If the application specifies a word count for your personal statement, adhere to it. If there is a minimum or maximum number of recommendation letters an applicant is allowed to provide; provide that number of recommendation letters.
For more insight and advice from Dr. Martin go to www.gradschoolroadmap.com.
Dr. Donald C. Martin is an expert in the fields of enrollment management, student affairs and higher education administration. From 1980 to 2008 he managed divisions including admissions, financial aid, student development, registration/advising, and career, disabled and international services
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