How to Prepare for a Graduate School

A graduate school is a more advanced learning institute which awards advanced degrees to students who have an undergraduate degree already.

It is a school where people who have gained a bachelor\’s degree and are out to get an additional education go to achieve their dreams.

Grad schools can be located within academic departments of universities.

Who is qualified to attend a Graduate school?

To enroll to a grad school, you are required to have obtained a bachelor\’s degree from an accredited institution. That\’s to say, graduate schools are for people with degree certificates from accredited institutions. 

Requirements to get into graduate School

Going to a graduate school is worth the effort but the process can be discouraging though.

That is why a person who wants to go to a graduate school should be coordinated as the thrill you have for grad school might perish if you’re not ready for the admission processes.

Here are the necessary things you need if you are applying for a grad school:

  1. Application Form
  2. Statement of Purpose
  3. Academic Transcript
  4. Recommendation Letters
  5. Grad school Test Scores
  6. Curriculum Vitae/Résumé

1. Application form

This form can come in paper or online format. The data needed for completion of this form largely gives forth a curriculum vitae.

It comprises your personal details, education history, preferred course of study, outcome of any tests you are needed to take and the names of your referees. It is required that you fill this form with utmost caution.

2. Statement of Purpose

A statement of purpose is the focal point of a graduate school application.

Depending on the university, you will need to write about the course you want to study, your reasons for aspiring to study that particular course and the experiences you have gathered.

You will also need to write how your course of study will benefit you and your community after completing your program. 

Statement of purpose is an avenue to show the admission council who you truly are and explain why you are fit for the program.

It is also a good opportunity to show your writing prowess.

3. Academic transcript

Transcripts are a record of your achievement as a student. It has your CGPA and the individual scores of the various courses you took in the tertiary institution, from year one to final. 

It is one of the greatest prerequisites for getting into a grad school. Depending on your institution, you may be asked to provide originals or certified copies of transcripts of your undergraduate degree and other graduate schools you have received a degree from.

4. Recommendation Letters

Another tiring requirement for grad school is letters of recommendation.

Depending on the institution, you may be required to provide two to four recommendation letters.

It is ideal to get the letters from your past or present professors. It is also advisable to get the letters from professors you have good cordial relationships with so as not to get a tepid recommendation.

5. Grad school Test Scores

Tests you will be required to take is dependent on your program of study.

Some grad school programs may request one or more of the following regulated universally accepted tests as part of the application requirement:

  • GRE
  • GMAT.

6. Curriculum Vitae/Résumé

You will be required to provide your CV/résumé. This should contain your educational background, work experiences, achievements, publications, skills and after school activities. 

If you don\’t know how to write an academic curriculum vitae that is sound, we advice that you outsource it. Yes, they are people who write good academic curriculum vitae for students seeking graduate school admissions.

Benefits of going to a graduate school

The following are the benefits of going to a graduate school:

  • It helps in personal development
  • It gives you professional training
  • It gives you a commanding lead
  • It gives you an edge over others when it comes to job hunting
  • It increases your knowledge
  • It gives you proficient experience
  • It boosts your earning potential
  • It will make you have a better employment opportunities
  • It will helps you move up in your career ladder, even faster.
  • It will help you go deeper into your preferred course of study, thus becoming a specialist in your field of study.
  • It will enable you to connect with professionals 

How to Prepare for Grad School

1. know what you want to study

It is necessary that you know about the program you are aspiring to go for in grad school.

Before applying for that particular program, make some research about it.

This will give you a direction on what to achieve when you are done with it.

Knowing about your preferred program of study will help mould your analysis and give you the proficient improvement you seek. 

2  Evaluate your ability to take on your preferred program 

It is important that you evaluate your ability to cope with more tasks that will come with doing your postgraduate studies.

Make sure that you are motivated and committed to persisting through your decision.

Superficial motivation won\’t sustain you when challenges arise.

3. Financial status

It is imperative that you check your bank balance applying for grad school; this is because it cost a lot to enroll and successfully complete a graduate school program.

Make plans on how you will fund your program. Find out if your program will allow you to be working full time or part-time.

Make sure you have the necessary finances to see your self through grad school.

If you need financial help, start early to seek one by looking out and applying for scholarships.

4. Get the necessary documents

The required documents includes your transcripts, recommendation letters, curriculum vitae and test scores.

Plan for your letters of recommendation and ensure they are not Luke-warm.

Your recommendations greatly affect your chances of getting accepted into your preferred institution of study. 

5. Make sure your application is faultless

Do well to ensure that your application is faultless and is submitted on the deadline.

Seek help from students who are currently doing the program you are applying for; preferably in the same institution.

Ask them to direct you so as not to make mistakes. Give your application components to a trusted superior to analyse. That way your application will be faultless.

6. Ask professors for recommendations

Meet Professors that studied the course you intend to study before applying and ask them questions. 

This will help you in making the right decisions. They will also help you in selecting your research plan.

Ensure you communicate with them in a  respectful manner too. Ask them about their threats, rewards, powerhouse and the skills that helped them to do well.

Seek to know their course direction and their various encouragements at tough choice making points, this will help you greatly in your preparations. 


  1. Graduate school meaning in the cambridge dictionary.
  2. What is grad school?
  3. Graduate school definition and meaning. Merriam Webster.


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