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Requirements needed to apply to grad school

Posted by Kari Clarkson on October 11, 2018 at 9:08 AM

accomplishment-celebrate-ceremony-267885Depending on where you’re applying to grad school and what you’re applying for, you’ll need to meet a few requirements.

Many institutions offer master’s and PhD programs as well as graduate diplomas.

Once you’ve narrowed your search in terms of the program you want to apply to and where, check their website to see what you’ll need for that specific school.

If you’re looking for guidelines, here are some general requirements to check when applying to grad school.

A related degree and competitive GPA

First on the list: a degree (or research project/thesis-based master’s level degree for PhD hopefuls) from a recognized institution that is in the same area of study you’re applying to, or at least closely related.

This is a bit of a no-brainer, as the program you’re interested in is likely going to be related to your undergraduate degree. However, make sure you double check your degree is compatible, just to be safe.

You’ll also need to achieve a certain letter grade average, usually in the B range. If you’re still in your undergraduate and working towards applying to grad school, keep this in mind to dissuade you from slacking off when times get tough!

agenda-appointment-business-1020323Meeting application deadlines

Application deadlines will vary by institution and program. Make sure you find the specific deadlines for the program you’re interested in and start your application well in advance.

If you aren’t able to make your deadline, some universities will consider late applications on a case-by-case basis. It may depend if there is room left in the program and you may need to contact the school’s graduate program director to inquire.

Don’t forget to double check your application. If you submit your application without all of the required documents, it may be considered incomplete.

Preparing your application

Here are some tips on items you should be looking into as you prepare your application:

  • A supervisor (for research and project-based programs). You’ll need to reference your prospective supervisor in your application.
  • Determine if you need to complete any tests or exams, like English proficiency.
  • Determine and contact your referees.
  • Make a list of all the necessary documents for your application and start collecting them.

agreement-application-business-893894Make sure to include only the required documents. Any extra documentation won’t be regarded and could delay having your application processed.

Here’s a quick checklist of required documents, provided by our department of grad studies:

  • Two (or three, depending on the program) letters of recommendation.
  • Proof of English language proficiency.
  • One unofficial transcript of each previous undergrad and graduate transcript.
  • One or two-page statement of academic intent.
  • Photocopy of your degree parchment(s).
  • Any additional program-specific documents.

For more details on any of our required items, visit the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies website.

Apply online

Once you have all your document ducks in a row, it’s time to apply online. Make sure you have access to a printer and about an hour of time to complete your application.

You will submit your application through the Ontario Universities’ Application Centre. If you don’t already have an account, you can create one.

Send your documents

To finish your application, you must send all your required documents to your selected grad school by the established deadlines.

At our university, once we have received your application we will send you an email with your student number and PIN, a link to the Admissions Portal and a link to upload your documents. Get more details about uploading your documents and what is exactly required for our university.

Check your status online

Once you’ve submitted your application and have received confirmation on your submission success, you’ll typically get a follow-up email from your school’s grad studies department. In the email, you’ll find a link, PIN and password so you can log in to the applicant portal and check your status.

As these are just general guidelines for applying to grad school, make sure to check the specific steps required by your chosen institution.

Want to learn more about the grad studies programs offered at our university? Download our grad studies viewbook today!

Download Grad Studies Viewbook