Graduate and Professional School Application Timeline
Spring/Summer of Application Year
- Talk to NU professors, academic advisors, or TA’s for advice on programs and schools
- Meet with an NCA Career Counselor for assistance with the graduate school decision-making or application process
- Review individual graduate school/department websites or obtain information directly from your program of interest
- Prepare for and take standardized entrance exams in spring, summer or fall
- Make a checklist of requirements and deadlines for each school. Financial aid applications may be due earlier than your overall application.
- Begin asking for letters of recommendation from 2-3 professors or advisors
- Research and review program applications
- Verify with the Registrar that your official transcript is accurate and up-to-date
- Draft a general statement of purpose
Fall of Application Year
- If taking time off, have your professors write your recommendations to keep on file
- Make an appointment with an NCA Career Counselor or visit the Writing Place for help with your personal statement
- Request that transcripts, entrance exam scores, and recommendation letters be forwarded to each of your schools (unless otherwise indicated on the application)
- Submit application documents to schools by or before the deadline
- Prior to the deadline, verify with each school that all of your application materials are complete.
- Prepare for interviews, if necessary
Winter of Application Year
- Develop a ‘Plan B’ by brainstorming and discussing alternative options with an NCA Career Counselor
- Evaluate and submit offers of acceptance
- Negotiate any scholarship or grant offers as applicable
- Congratulate yourself and celebrate getting through the process!