Does Every School Require a Graduate Admissions Test?

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Updated August 4, 2020

Does graduate school require graduate admissions test scores? This is a question that nearly every undergraduate student will ask at some point during his or her studies. Your professors might leave you to believe that every school asks you to take the GRE, MCAT or another test and submit those scores as part of your application. Though many schools do require that you take one of these tests, not all do. You'll also find that graduate schools ask for other types of information.

Graduate Admissions Tests

When looking at whether admissions to graduate school require graduate admissions test scores, you might want to look at what these tests are and what the tests include. The LSAT is a specialized test designed for law school students, while the MCAT is a test designed for medical students. The General Records Examination, or GRE, is probably the most popular test. It consists of three parts that cover reading comprehension, quantitative reasoning and analytical reasoning. Though some schools will ask you to submit your scores on that test, other schools accept graduate students who complete applications and have good references without requiring a test score.

Letters of Recommendation

One of the most important things that you need for graduate school is two or more letters of recommendation. While undergraduate programs sometimes ask for letters from your peers, graduate programs want letters from people experienced with your work at the college level. According to US News and World Report, Peter Van Buskirk suggests that you choose professors you have a connection with and that you sit down and talk with each one after asking them to write your letters. If you did an internship or had a part-time job while in college, you can also use one of your employers or supervisors as a recommendation.

Copies of Transcripts

There are two different types of transcripts that you can get from your school: an unofficial transcript and an official transcript. The main difference between the two is that an unofficial transcript is one that you can only use for personal reasons. Most graduate schools ask that you submit an official transcript that has the seal of your school on the front. The transcript shows your history with the school, including your total grade point average, each class you took and the grades you received in each class. Your transcript will also show whether you dropped, failed or retook a class.

Graduate Essays

Does graduate school require graduate admissions test scores is just as important as the question of whether the school requires the completion of a graduate essay. Many programs use this essay as a way to judge your writing style and whether you have the writing skills that will help you do well in the program. The question might be as simple as asking you about an important day in your life, why you want to study a specific topic or your goals for the future. You may find that the essay asks you about a topic relating to your field of study as well.

Related Resource: Graduate School Dissertation

Going to graduate school is a must for some students, and you may find that you need a master's degree to work in your career field. While many students want an answer to the question of does graduate school require graduate admissions test scores, the simple truth is that it depends on the school itself.

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