Guidelines for Researching Professional Degree Programs
Questions to Consider
- What is my goal?
- If it is not teaching or research/analysis, a professional degree may be a smart choice.
- What is my timeline?
- These programs are typically two years in length, though they may also be offered as evening degrees that can be combined with employment.
What are some of the options?
There are many professional degree programs. The following is a sample:
- Criminal Justice
- Data Science
- Human Development
- International Business
- International Relations/International Studies
- Law Schools
- Library and Information Science
There are many, many others—you just have to look around (Google search!)
How do these programs work?
- In general, you are more likely to pay up front (through savings, work, or loans)
- In general, you are more likely to get a return on your investment (you make more money when you finish)
- Many jobs now require a Master’s level degree
- Deadlines in February and March
- Fee: approximately $50.00
- Often need Graduate Record Exam (GRE)
- GPA requirements vary
- Will need 3 academic or employment references—ask faculty for letters before you leave Western (start developing those relationships NOW)
- Also need to submit financial aid forms, transcripts, and resume
- Work experience is highly valued—get practical experience (internship, volunteer)
- May have an internship or practicum component
- May require a writing sample
- May require letter of intent