There is a bit of a debate among our interns and young authors, on whether grad school is right for them or not…we are here to weigh in with some tips.

Whether or not to attend graduate school is a question that many college students and graduates grapple with. During the great recession many students have opted to attend graduate school instead of face a difficult job market. And according to a recent survey conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council that strategy may be paying off for some 2017 MBA graduates. The survey reports an increase in hiring of MBA graduates compared to 2016. In addition, according to the Census Bureau, in 2016 college graduates between 25 and 29 with a master’s degree made on average $7,954 more annually than those with only a bachelor’s degree.

But before signing up for tutoring for the GRE exam, we recommend that students carefully consider the following steps:

  1. Do the math. Before deciding on whether to pursue graduate school, students determine whether graduate school makes sense financially. Specifically, students need to research what are the job opportunities in your chosen field. How much more can students expect to make with your graduate degree than without it? Students also need to find out what are the out-of-pocket costs as well as the cost of lost income to pursue an advanced degree. Once a student has collected all the information, they are then in a good position to do the math.
  2. Prepare for graduate school while an undergraduate. The first step students should take to prepare for graduate school is to get good grades as an undergraduate. As undergraduates, students should volunteer, work or intern in areas of interest to them. Students need to get experience that tells them if they like the field. The third step is to minimize debt as much as possible. Students can earn great money with online tutoring jobs and the best part is they only need a minimum of a high school diploma.
  3. Have a purpose for your studies. Most academic programs require a statement of purpose. Simply put, that means you need a purpose for your studies. Medical school, business school and most academic graduate programs expect you to know why you want to attend graduate school. Students need to research their intended fields or they can easily make mistakes.
  4. Take test once if possible. We also recommend that students take graduate school admission tests only once if possible. “Try to take one time and make it your best,” “Don’t take it on a lark.” Most business schools and law schools take the highest score. Graduate schools and medical schools policies vary.
  5. Use graduate school rankings as a data source not as a bible. The rankings themselves contain data that is useful but the “rankings themselves are for lazy minds who don’t want to think. The rankings that count are the one that the individual applicant should create.” Students should research graduate school programs on school web sites and they should also talk to people in the fields they want to join.
  6. Work first if possible. Depending on the graduate degree, it might be helpful for students to work first full time instead of going directly to graduate school from college. Students interested in pursuing an MBA degree work 2 to 6 years before graduate school.

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