Researching Programs and Schools
There are various ways to research graduate programs in which you are interested. The first step is to think about the factors that are important to you in a graduate school: location, program focus, cost, type of institution, etc. (see “Choosing a Graduate Program” for more possibilities to consider for evaluation). Once you have established the influencing factors you can begin your graduate program search. There are a few approaches that we suggest:
- Online research: Here are a few websites that are helpful in narrowing down your possibilities and decisions:
- Petersons.com: This site allows you to search for programs using various search criteria. Many of the possible graduate programs will be listed. There are also alternate resources available for you as you begin down the path to graduate school.
- GradSchools.com: This site functions much in the same way that Peterson’s does. You can indicate search criteria and find graduate programs that fit with those criteria. Again, the list may not be entirely exhaustive but many of the programs will be listed.
- Specific School Websites- If you are interested in some specific schools, you should always check out their websites. This way you can gain the most accurate information about the program.
- AC Online: This site provides information on accredited online programs. It includes a series of guidebooks for veterans, students with disabilities, Hispanic students, and other college hopefuls dedicated to quality and affordable higher education; an in-depth financial aid section with articles, guides, expert Q&As, and walkthroughs of key processes and forms; an expert-driven, 20-page guide to online learning success; and a directory of introductory Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) from top universities.
- Talk with Alumnae: Search the Alumnae Resource Network to find alumnae contacts that have attended schools that you are considering. Alumnae are an excellent resource of information!
- Program Literature: It is helpful to begin your search on the internet but as you narrow down your options, request an information packet from the schools and programs in which you are most interested. More than likely, you will receive more than enough information about the program and you will have established some type of contact with the program coordinator. Don’t be afraid to use these coordinators as resources as well.