Applying to Graduate School
Starting the applications after selecting schools to apply to.
Know your deadlines
Applications are often accepted in late December or early January for the following fall semester, but some schools have a "rolling admission" process or different application cycles, so be sure to get the deadlines and instructions from each school.
Prepare all documents
The following are typical admission materials, but you should check with each graduate program before proceeding:
- Application(s)- Complete and submit the application and all required materials on time. You can always ask questions directly of the graduate program. Be aware you may be asked to pay an application fee. If that is a hardship, there may be scholarships or waivers available, so check with the graduate program admissions staff.
- Official transcripts- Request all transcripts from all universities attended. To request your DePauw transcript, visit the DePauw Registrar's Office.
- Writing to relevant faculty- Write to faculty at your chosen schools; let them know of your scholarly interests and read their published works. You can ask them questions about the program and their research, but keep it balanced between general inquiry and professional dialogue.
- Statement of purpose- Sometimes referred to as a personal statement, you should begin writing early and ask for lots of feedback on your writing. This is a critical piece of your application, so spending time to work on multiple drafts is necessary. Ask peers, faculty or other advisers to provide feedback.
- Critical writing sample- If requested, your writing sample should reflect your best work as it relates to what you want to pursue in your graduate program.
- Entrance exam scores- Take the appropriate graduate entrance exams well in advance (e.g., GRE, MCAT, LSAT). Request your scores be sent to your schools of choice.
- Letters of recommendation- Request letter from faculty member who know you well enough to discuss your work and potential in detail. General statements about you doing well in a class or general reference to your GPA are not helpful.
- Curriculum vitae or resume- You also will need to submit your resume or CV that conveys the experience you’ve had so far. You can take advantage of on-campus leadership opportunities, Extended Studies offerings including community service and off-campus study, and job shadowing to create a well-rounded DePauw experience
- TA/fellowship application- You can apply for teaching assistantships or other available fellowship programs. There is usually a separate application for financial support opportunities.