Ten questions you should be finding answers to while researching grad schools and programs.
During the graduate school research and application process, it can be easy to forget that YOU are selecting a program as much as THEY are selecting you. Many students will half-jokingly say “I’ll go anywhere, literally anywhere that admits me”. Listen, I get it, the admissions process can be time consuming and emotionally draining. But never forget that you don’t want to attend just any graduate school. You want to attend a program that provides support for you to successfully pursue your academic, career, and personal goals. How can you tell if a graduate school will allow you to do so? You gotta ask questions.
Now, many of your questions should come directly from researching each program and forming targeted questions from that research. However, here are some good general questions to consider asking during your process:
#1. Where are recent alumni employed? What do most students do after graduation?
#2. How closely do students work with faculty? Is it common for students and faculty to publish together?
#3. How long does the average student take to complete your degree?
#4. How do you measure success in your degree program?
#5. Do you have programs or services that holistically support graduate students specifically?
#6. What opportunities are available outside of the classroom to achieve my professional goals?
#7. Can you describe the faculty/student relationship in your program, and the structures that support that relationship?
#8. How do graduate students in this program engage with the local community?
#9. What do you look for in assessing an applicant’s fit with your program?
#10. Can I be connected with a current graduate student to discuss their experience?