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Graduate School

Not sure if graduate school is the right choice for you?  This page contains helpful resources to help you put the pieces together and make an informed choice.
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Explore the Graduate Programs offered at Eastern!
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Why go to Graduate School?

One of the best reasons for attending graduate school is to earn a degree that will allow you to work in a field that requires specialized training. For some, the passion for acquiring knowledge and keeping pace with current developments in a specific field is the reason to pursue an advanced degree.

Taking the time to evaluate your reasons for attending graduate school is imperative. If you are uncertain about your career or educational goals, you may want to speak with a career counselor. Graduate school may not be necessary to support your career aspirations.  Graduate school is more than an extension of your undergraduate degree.  No matter your area of study, graduate work involves performing intensive research.

Graduate Levels and Degrees

  • Traditional graduate degrees include the Master of Arts (M.A.) and the Master of Science (M.S.).  Both require one to two academic years of full-time study to complete. The M.A. in a liberal arts field, generally requires a thesis or comprehensive exams, whereas the M.S. usually requires a project or scientific research.

  • A Doctorate Degree signifies the highest degree of education that can be earned, often referred to as a terminal degree. In addition to coursework, it requires the pursuit of original research and presenting a dissertation of your work.

    Examples of doctoral degrees include: Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy), Ed.D., in the discipline of education, and the Psy.D. (in Psychology). A J.D. is awarded for law, an M.D. is awarded for medicine. These programs vary in the number of credit hours required to complete each program. Most, however, require a total of at least six years of college work for completion.

  • Certificates of Advanced Study (C.A.S.), Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies (C.A.G.S), Professional Diplomas and Specialist Certificates are post-master's programs that involve additional coursework beyond the master's (i.e. six years) and are intended to provide further expertise in a discipline.

Graduate School Preparation

  • As with any major life decision, we encourage you to first do your research.  Which colleges and universities are best suited for you?

    Each September, our office hosts a Graduate School Fair.  This is a great place to start! 

    Additional resources include:

    US News Best Graduate Schools

    Peterson's Graduate Schools

  • The following links provide helpful tips on prepping for graduate school entrance exams, including how to register and complete practice exams.

    • ETS Net Provides access to information on taking the GRE, GMAT, LSAT, TOEFL and Praxis. Practice with sample test questions.
    • GRE Online The official GRE site allows you to register online for a GRE General or Subject Test, view scores online and order additional score reports
    • Kaplan Online Extensive resource for graduate school applicants. In addition to business, medical and law school information, includes nursing, dental school and accounting exam preparation.
    • The Princeton Review Provides information on entrance exams, admissions requirements & financial aid. Includes business, law and medical schools.
    • My GRE GRE practice tests, tutorials, hundreds of practice questions, a vocabulary tutor, as well as study guides.
  • The thought of financing your graduate studies can be daunting, but there are resources available to you to help finance or off-set the cost of pursuing your advanced degree.  We encourage you to consider some of the following:

    • Graduate, Teacher or research Assistant Positions Many graduate programs offer GA, TA or RA positions students may apply to.  Often times these positions will pay for the majority of your tuition expenses.
    • Grants and Scholarships In most cases these are awarded based on academic achievement or financial need and do not have to be repaid.
    • Federal Grants and Loans As a graduate student you may still qualify for federal or state financial aid assistance.
    • Employer FinancingSome employers may offer full or partial tuition reimbursement as part of your benefit package.

    You may find reviewing some of the follow articles and websites we found online helpful in as you consider graduate school financing options:

    "Use These 5 Strategies to Pay for Graduate School" March 28, 2019 US News

    The SallieMae website

    "Graduate (Less) Broke: Tips To Pay For Grad School Wisely" March 12, 2019 Money Under 30