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Graduate School Admission Timeline

If you do decide to apply to graduate school, here is the timeline to use.

Summer Before Senior Year

  • This is the time you should be deciding which grad program is right for you. This involves research that can be done using the Web sites mentioned above or by talking with faculty at your school. You can also consult with the Monmouth University Career Development office for advice.
  • Begin to understand which standardized admission test is needed for your particular program. You may consider enrolling in a test prep program such as one offered by Princeton Review ( or Kaplan ( if feel you could use some test-taking coaching. Visit our main page for a list of links to free on-demand sample tests.
  • Here are a list of programs and their corresponding tests:
    • Humanities, Education – GRE
    • Most nonbusiness-related programs – GRE
    • Law school – LSAT
    • MBA – GMAT
    • Medical School – MCAT
  • Begin to draft your graduate school essay.


  • Continue online research of schools.
  • Start networking with professionals to get a better idea of what type of commitment would be required by your chosen field.
  • Finalize your list of schools.
  • Begin to identify professors who are willing to write letters of recommendation for you.
  • Begin to have people you trust review your graduate school essay and offer suggestions to improve it.
  • Contact your school’s registrar’s office and begin to have your official transcripts sent to your schools of choice.
  • Take the required standardized test no later than October.


  • Have your test scores sent to the schools to which you want to apply. You can retake the tests if you are not happy with the results.
  • Begin completing grad school applications.
  • Drop off recommendation forms to those writing recommendation letters for you. Be organized! Set up folders for each school on your application list and keep copies of forms and letters in the folder for reference. Be sure to provide your references with a resume and a copy of your personal statement so they use this information in writing their letters for you. Also, provide them with an addressed, stamped envelope for their convenience.
  • Be mindful of financial aid deadlines for each school.
  • Submit your applications and supporting documents either via e-mail or postal mail. Be sure to keep copies for your own records.
  • Verify that letters of recommendation have been sent.


  • If applying for financial aid, you will have to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as soon as possible after January 1.
  • Now you will need to begin the wait for schools to decide on your application.

Good luck in your application process, and be sure to contact Monmouth University Career Development if you have any questions about your application to graduate school.