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Monthly Archives: March 2017

Applying to Graduate School

Determining if Graduate School is the Right Choice for You

Graduate school is perfect for people who enjoy research and learning. It is not ideal for people who merely want to take more courses, or for those who are in a rush to get a job.
Undergraduate study differs from graduate education in that it requires more of your time, motivation, and effort. It also entails forming professional and personal relationships with professors and other students. Generally, it challenges you in what you want to achieve in your life.

The Right Time for Graduate School

The right time to pursue an advanced degree is situational. You can embark on graduate school right after you receive your bachelor’s degree, a year after graduation, or even several years later. If you are approaching graduation, and you have decided that graduate school is the next step for you, it may be helpful if you ask yourself the following questions:

1) Are you ready for another three to eight years of studying?
2) Should you take time off before moving on to graduate school?
3) If you want to take time off, why?

If the main reason for taking time off is fatigue, then ask yourself if the two or three months of vacation before graduate school can help you revitalize yourself. If you are convinced that graduate school is the next step for you, then there is no reason why you should delay your application.

Right after Graduation

If the knowledge you acquired in your undergraduate education is specifically relevant to your graduate program, then this option may be the right one for you. Other reasons for going straight to graduate school include your excellence as a student; your current status of having few (or no) obligations, both personally and financially; and your interest in pursuing an area of expertise that requires a graduate degree.

Take time to ensure that graduate school is right for you. Advanced study requires a considerable amount of motivation and the ability to work independently. Sometimes, a vacation from studying may help intensify your motivation and enhance your skills. As such, you may want to consider the following option.

After a Sufficient Rest Period

Many graduates take a year off before they start their graduate program. You can use this time to work, both to help you fund your studies and to gain experience. Perhaps, you simply want to travel. If you are traveling, remember to apply for courses at the right time, keeping in mind that you might be asked to attend an interview or an admission test. You will need to plan well ahead, sometimes as long as 18 months prior to application. In the case of some overseas programs, it is common for students to put together a timeline before they begin focusing on their time off.

It is important to understand that pursuing a graduate degree a number of years after undergraduate study is not uncommon. Some time off can be valuable if it improves your qualifications and primes you for the pressures and rigors of graduate school.

After Working Full-time

The reasons for acquiring work experience before graduate school include acquiring a better understanding of your professional objectives, obtaining relevant work experience, and developing a more responsible attitude toward studying. If you know in advance that you intend to pursue a graduate education after several years of work, look for an employer with a tuition reimbursement program. Often, employers are willing to finance part, or all, of the expenses entailed in graduate study.

While Working

The biggest percentage of the graduate school student population consists of part-time students. The idea of supplemental education is a growing trend because rapid industry changes affect almost all fields of expertise. Continuing to work, whether on a part time or a full time basis, can also be a means of paying for expenses incurred during the course of your graduate study.

Master’s vs. Doctoral Degrees

It is a common misconception that a prospective PhD student must possess a Master’s degree to enter a doctoral program. Although majority of graduate programs do require this, it is not always the case. It is better to conduct your own research and investigate the degree requirements for a program as opposed to making an assumption. In this booklet, we provide some of the more significant differences between being a Masteral and a Doctoral candidate.

The Masteral Candidate

You will spend, on the average, about two years in graduate school. The purpose of this program is to provide you with solid education in a specialized academic discipline

Your First Year The enrollment process is similar to that for undergraduate study. You are required to fulfill the coursework requirements of your degree. However, the work will be heavier, the course topics will be more specialized, and much more will be expected from you than when you were an undergraduate. With your adviser’s help (chosen by you or assigned by the program), you will start to solidify your academic focus.

Your Second Year You may take more advanced classes to complete your course requirements. Having determined your research direction, you will gradually spend more effort toward the completion of your thesis. Depending on your pace, you may need one semester or an entire academic year for you to finish your masteral thesis, the objective of which is to show your mastery in your area of study.

The Doctoral Candidate

You will spend, on the average, five to six years in graduate school. The purpose of the program is to provide you with comprehensive knowledge of your field, prepare you to conduct original and significant research, and make you ready to become a member of a teaching faculty.

Your First Three Years You will enroll in classes to fulfill your degree requirements and obtain comprehensive knowledge of your field of study. You will gradually establish your research direction, often consulting with an adviser (usually) appointed at the start of your graduate study. By the end of your second or third year, you would have completed a thesis or taken comprehensive exams, or both. The thesis and/or exams will allow your professors to evaluate your capabilities to continue with doctoral studies.

Your Last Three Years Coursework becomes a minor component of your academic workload, and may even disappear as you conceptualize your dissertation, a novel and significant contribution to the available knowledge in your specialization. You will teach more and more classes and gradually collaborate more with senior faculty members. You will form a close professional relationship with a faculty member who shares the same research interests as you do, and he/she will become your dissertation adviser. Your program will end with the completion of your dissertation, which may entail an oral defense of your research before a panel of faculty members and/or experts in the field you are in.

Test Strategies for Students

First, consider your own attitude regarding the test:

Do you, as a parent or teacher, treat the test as the be-all and end-all? Do you send the unspoken message that a child is “good” or “bad” depending on his or her performance? If you are honest with yourself, you can work to temper some of your own anxieties and instead promote a positive message – the test, while an important measure of achievement, is just one facet of the total child. Focus on helping children prepare the best they can. Convey the idea that their effort and hard work will pay off.

Understand the consequences of stress:

Needless worry can prove not only to be wasted energy, but also could have an adverse effect on overall performance. Some studies have shown that undue amounts of stress can lead to negative side effects, including sleep disturbances, lack of appetite, and even temporary memory loss!

Acknowledge your child’s feelings:

Just knowing that you care and understand can lessen anxious feelings. On the other hand, if you dismiss or minimize your child’s concerns, he or she may feel ignored or abnormal for experiencing these emotions.

Talk your child through the fear:

Sometimes, discussing the worst-case scenario can actually help allay a child’s worries. If, for instance, your child fears that doing poorly on the test will lead to retention, you can easily put your child at ease with the message that this will not happen. Sometimes a child fears the unknown, but once he or she understands what really will or will not happen, the worries disappear!

Help your child feel prepared:

Do whatever you can to give your child a sense of efficacy. This can take many forms: assist your son or daughter with test-taking strategies, work through practice problems, help the child understand the directions (especially the vocabulary), and focus on your child’s academic strengths. If you feel that this falls outside your comfort zone, consider practice books and/or tutoring to build your child’s skill set. With increased confidence, your son or daughter will feel ready and able to tackle the test!

As a teacher, look for ways to prepare students properly without becoming test-obsessed:

If you have focused on content standards throughout the year, you can rest assured that you have already been preparing your students. In the months prior to the test, help build independence in children by giving them directions similar to the test, familiarize them with the vocabulary and format of the assessment, and give them opportunities to practice problems in a timed format. All of these measures will ease a child’s fear of the unknown and build test-taking confidence.

Tricks Get Better Grades in High School

Be organized

You should organize yourself for better management of time. In high school you have to do multi tasking. You should maintain personal planner for keep tracking on your class assignment and exams due dates. Create dedicated area in your home for study so you can easily concentrate in your study.

Set goal and try to achieve it

Set realistic goal and do proper planning for achieve it. Goal may be anything like doing assignment work, reading class note. Set day to day goal and try to achieve it.

Use Time sensibly

Use your time wisely for handling multi tasking. Time is most crucial factor for high school students. You should maintain discipline in your work. Do smart work rather then only hard work. If you have large work then you have to develop ability to break it into small manageable parts so you can easily execute your work.

Take regular break between your works. Consider break as reword. Do some other activity in break time and refresh yourself for next task.

Use text books

You should read text books for every subject. Text book will cover all topics for particular course. When you read any course material use outline system for comprehend that material. Make separate note for reading material this will help you lot in exam time.

Improve your writing skill

Good writing skill adds extra advantage in your academics. During the whole term you have to write many assignments, term papers and case studies as per course requirements. If you have good writing skill then it helps in your study.

Tips Study For Test

1. Start getting ready in the beginning of the term
In the beginning of each term, you should not miss classes. This is the time when you meet your new teachers, get course books and course syllabuses and other elementary stuff. In addition, in the first weeks of each semester the instructors are busy introducing the new modules or topics. You have to be present to get first hand information. Take notes meticulously and ask the teacher a question if necessary.

2. While at home or dormitory, create a study schedule for the entire week
Plan your time as reasonably as possible when drafting your schedule. During your reading sessions every night, go through the notes you wrote during various lessons. Have a separate notebook to write notes as you study. At the end of the day, you will sleep knowing what was difficult to understand in each subject.

3. Work on your difficult areas as early as possible
Each day you will find out what was too difficult to comprehend on various subjects. You have to avoid procrastinating by solving these problem areas as soon as they are due. There are many ways of doing this. First, you can use your text books and the ones available at your school library. Read through the topic again carefully and thoughtfully. Download internet notes and read them too while making short notes. After gathering and analyzing extra information, create questions to ask a fellow student, members of your study group or teachers.

4. Find and try practical questions and exercises each day
You are certainly not the first student to learn the course you are doing. Thus, you can take advantage of the fact that there have been prior students who took a similar course in your school. Gather their past examination papers for revision. If your friend is taking a similar course at a different university, collage or high school, borrow his or her prior revision papers too. Look for past tests on your problem areas and use them for practice. Create questions personally and try to answer them without using your books or notes.