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Grad School Resume Lacking Work Experience? You Can Still Be a Strong Candidate

October 29, 2014 by

Many students contemplating their grad school resume right after undergrad worry about their lack of work experience– especially when competing with applicants with multiple years’ worth of bullets on their resume.

Lack of work experience is a legitimate concern, but it definitely shouldn’t stop you from applying.  In fact, as was recently observed by professors at Harvard Business School, “younger students tend to be more open to learning compared with older students who tend to be more cynical or think that they’re beyond academic environments since they’ve already had substantial real world experience.”

What we’re hearing from admissions departments of graduate programs across the country is that the average age of those applying—and those accepted—is trending younger.  Top programs in business, education, engineering and public policy are seeing younger, less experienced applicant pools.  Reasons include:

  • a soft job market

  • a high unemployment rate (especially for those ages 22-29)

  • Read full post

Free GRE Vocabulary Comic

October 27, 2014 by

Learning GRE vocabulary can be more amusing than a circus clown with a whale balloon. We bet you’ll never forget the meaning of the GRE vocab word DISPARATE when you conjure the image of Bozo and John and the different career paths they have chosen!

Strong vocabulary skills are will help you earn a high score on the GRE, and we often hear the question, “How can I increase my GRE vocabulary before Test Day?” The GRE Verbal Reasoning section tests your vocab in a few different ways. To master the verbal section on the GRE, you must start building your vocabulary as soon as possible. Flash cards, mnemonics, and other helpful strategies will ensure that you go into GRE Test Day with a strong vocabulary, ready to tackle the verbal section of the exam.

What jokes, tricks, and images do you use to remember your GRE vocabulary? Share your … Read full post

7 Most Lucrative Graduate Degrees Series: Physics

October 24, 2014 by

Since, as a profession, “being Neil Degrasse Tyson” is already taken, future physicists have to consider alternate career paths these days. Fortunately, a career in physics is anything but a “Bohr!” In fact, physics is one of the most lucrative graduate degrees out there, so pursuing a master’s degree in physics is something even Heisenberg could be certain about!

If going into academia or working in a lab isn’t for you, earning a master’s degree in physics can prepare you for a career in many fields, from environmental control to patent law. At its core, physics is equal parts science and liberal arts, so a background in physics develops your strengths in problem solving, crunching big data sets, and navigating big ideas.

Path to Admission

Your path to a graduate degree in physics will typically begin with earning your bachelor’s in physics, but it doesn’t have to. Almost a … Read full post

How to Get into Graduate School: U.S. News Grad School Roadmap

October 22, 2014 by

With the end of the year approaching, many people turn their minds to life changes and new beginnings. Is graduate school in your future? Are you unsure of how to start the process, much less how to get into graduate school?  Fortunately, U.S. News published a blog series entitled the “Graduate School Road Map”, with entries on what to do each month for a year before your applications are due.

It is about that time to begin researching programs, visiting schools, and preparing to put together the strongest application possible, and there is a huge amount of information to glean from these roadmaps.  Some examples of the tips on how to apply for grad school successfully:

  • 12 months before applying to grad school:
    • Make an alphabetical list of between 10 and 20 programs, regardless of what you presently know or have heard about them. Write them all
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5 Tips for a Stellar Job Application

October 21, 2014 by

At that point in graduate school where you’re applying for a job, internship, or teaching assistant (TA) position? We’ve got five easy job application and interview tips that you can use when applying to just about anything.

Tuck these tips under your belt, and you’ll be strutting your way into a new job—not just an interview—before you can say, hired!

1.       Professionalism in all things virtual

Your virtual interactions—and that largely means emails when applying for an internship, TA position, or similar job—need to be strong reflections of your professionalism and support your candidacy for a position. Contemporary communication tends to be casual, and it’s easy to let that slip into your emails.

For starters, think of your email greeting, and let the rest of your correspondence follow in a similar tone. Avoid opening an email to a hiring manager with anything as casual as “Hey,” or … Read full post

How The Voice is Like Grad School Admissions

October 16, 2014 by

How is The Voice like grad school admissions?

Watching the final audition rounds on NBC’s singing competition The Voice got me thinking about grad school admissions and higher education.

That’s right, because belting out a tune that gets you that coveted four-chair turn on The Voice is not so different from putting together a graduate school application that elicits similar enthusiastic responses from admissions officers. Those contestants on The Voice who had the coaches fighting over them had a lot in common, and many of them were the same qualities that make you a competitive graduate school applicant.

Don’t we all want admissions committees fighting over us?

Here is your checklist for a competitive application that will make you the talk of higher education.

Create an admissions officer’s dream application

Just about every successful singer on The Voice has an absolutely clear (and usually memorable) answer to the following … Read full post

Would They Get Good GRE Scores?: The Walking Dead Edition

October 15, 2014 by

No spoilers here, but watching the new season of The Walking Dead got  me wondering about how these characters, who deal with life-or-death challenges, would fare if faced with the challenge of taking the GRE. Would they get good GRE scores?

My guesses are based on how we’ve seen the characters portrayed in the series and what we know about their lives before the zombie apocalypse. See if you agree…

Would They Get Good GRE Scores?: The Walking Dead Edition

Rick Grimes

A small town sheriff’s deputy who is wounded in the line of duty and wakes to a zombie apocalypse. Rick struggles to cling to his moral code in the face of increasingly dire circumstances. Rick is sincere and hardworking, but his fatal flaw is that he second guesses himself and changes his mind too much – this could certainly hurt his GRE score.

GRE Score: 156 … Read full post

Pursuing Higher Education in the Information Age

October 13, 2014 by

If you’re seeking higher education or going back to school…

Ever wonder how important going back to school is for your life, career, and earning potential?

According to LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, it’s crucial. “The world is changing so quickly,” says Weiner, that “it’s absolutely critical to continue to learn. Continuous education is no longer a luxury.”

Opportunities and competition in “continuous education”

The increased popularity of online education is all part of the new “techonomic” (a portmanteau of “technology” and “economics”) world that makes continuous education possible.

According to Philip Zelikow via Forbes, “the future can present opportunities to engage in a more ‘distributed’ economy, to enjoy a near-infinite variety of identities and pursuits, to learn from and be enriched by more flexible, adaptable social structures than ever before.”

These changes influence and shape higher education. “The barriers to becoming better educated are dropping in ways we’ve … Read full post

5 Tips for Getting into the Best Graduate Schools

October 10, 2014 by

Previously, we talked about how it’s never too early to start putting together your graduate school application. You might have pinned that post, thinking, “Wow, this is really going to come in handy when I am a junior or senior in college!” But even as a freshman or sophomore in undergrad, you can already start taking steps toward becoming a competitive applicant and getting into the best graduate schools.

Here are five ways to start building up the credentials that will ultimately help you gain admission to a top-ranked program in your field.

1. Do your research

First, research graduate schools themselves. What types of programs interest you? Which grad schools are strong in your field? Where do you want to live? Depending on what you want to study, your graduate education will typically last between two and five years of your life, so make sure you aim … Read full post

Q&A: How to Succeed in Grad School

October 8, 2014 by

In our Q&A with Kaplan’s Jeff Rogers, find out how he unlocked the good life by parlaying his love of video games—along with his acquired knack for research—into a first-class grad school education at the University of California, Berkeley, and a rewarding career in faculty management and test-taking expertise.

Kaplan Test Prep (KTP): Tell us about yourself, Jeff. What do you currently do; where did you go to grad school; what advanced degree did you earn?

Jeff Rogers (JR): I’m a senior faculty manager at Kaplan, which means that my job is to help Kaplan teachers encourage students to achieve their admission goals and boost their grad school exams scores.

Like Tom Cruise said in Risky Business, “I deal in human fulfillment.” But I mean that in the most academically-minded way, with an unwavering focus on how students can achieve their full potential on the GRE.

The master’s degree … Read full post

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