Application Process Timetable

Sophomore Year: Spring/Junior Year: Fall

  • Research areas of interest. Review scholarly publications related to the programs/schools that you are considering, to see if the subject matter interests you.
  • Talk to your don and other faculty about specific interests, focus, schools and research findings.
  • Visit potential schools and schedule time to meet with representative faculty. Plan your questions in advance regarding your interests, their specialties and facilities. Feel free to ask about their recent graduates and current students. Assess your comfort at the school and in the community. Can you imagine yourself there?
  • Register and prepare for appropriate graduate admissions tests. Consider taking a test-prep class if previous experience with standardized tests has not been positive.
  • Investigate national scholarships and fellowships and note all deadlines.

Junior Year: Summer

  • Take required graduate admissions tests.
  • Upon receipt of your test scores, assess your profile in relation to students currently enrolled in programs you are considering.
  • Obtain application materials.
  • Verify application deadlines and rolling admissions policies.
  • Follow up with grants and national scholarship applications.
  • Any incomplete items from Sophomore/Junior year list, DO NOW!
  • Draft and have critiqued your application essay/personal statement.
  • Compile a "tiered" list of programs to which you plan to apply.

Senior Year: Fall

  • Schedule an appointment to meet with faculty you hope will write letters of recommendation on your behalf. Supply them with a copy of your personal statement, résumé, program and deadline information and specific names/addresses of the schools to which you are applying. Indicate how important it is to your application that each letter is personalized to the school and its unique characteristics.
  • Send in completed applications.
  • Register for Graduate and Professional School Financial Aid Service (GAPSFAS) if required.

Senior Year: Spring

  • Check with all institutions before the deadline to ensure your application file is complete.
  • Visit or re-visit institutions that accept you.
  • Send a deposit to your institution of choice.
  • Notify other colleges that accepted you of your decision so they may admit students on their waiting list.
  • Send thank-you notes to people who wrote your recommendation letters, informing them of your success.
  • Stop by the Career Services Office to let them know of your plans so they can update their records.
  • Celebrate the accomplishment of successfully completing the application process!


Reproduced and adapted with permission from Sarah Lawrence College's Graduate School Guide.

Page last modified January 19, 2009