After careful consideration of all of the factors listed, you’ve decided grad school is for you. Now what?

  1. Narrow in on a topic or program.
    This may seem like an obvious first step, but it is easy to overlook in the frenzy to find the right school. Which program is right for you, though, depends on what you want to study, so it’s important to give careful consideration to your specific research interests and discipline before moving forward.
  2. Check out the latest rankings by program.
    While a program’s ranking shouldn’t be the only criteria by which you make your decision, it should be still be a strong consideration. You can find the most recent rankings by searching for your subject of study here.
  3. Get acquainted with the scholars in your field.
    More important than a school or program’s rankings are whether or not they have scholars working on similar projects or with similar methodologies to your own. Do some research to find out which professors work with graduate students in the programs you’ve selected. You can even reach out to them to see if they’re interested in your potential research before applying.

Once you’ve zeroed in on a research topic or question, researched program rankings, and found some scholars with which you’d be interested in working, you can start putting together your application materials. These will vary depending on the school and the program, but one thing you can count on are application fees. If you require financial assistance for this part of the process or want to widen your application pool, be sure to look into the IHS PhD Application Fee Waiver.
Check out the next post in this series, featuring great PhD programs to keep on your radar.