Grad School 200: Preparing for Graduate Education – UW Graduate School Skip to content

Grad School 200: Preparing for Graduate Education

What is GRDSCH200?

GRDSCH200 is a course designed to help undergraduate students ask and answer the questions about graduate and professional school that will help them find the path that’s right for them, whether they decide to pursue an advanced degree at the UW or look into other options. It offers an overview of the structure and organization of graduate education, and focuses on helping students learn the skills to find resources, build a network and make decisions about continuing their studies beyond the baccalaureate.

What this class is

  • An opportunity for you to find out about graduate school, the application process and work on developing materials for the application
  • A chance to really think about what you want to do in life and if graduate school is a part of that
  • A large lecture style class dependent on student engagement and involvement. You will be helping each other throughout the course.
  • A fun way to get 2-credits while doing things you would normally have to just do on your own at home

What this class is NOT

  • A set of hard and fast rules about graduate education and/or the application process
  • A class to tell you that you SHOULD go to graduate school
  • An individual assistance course on the application process.
  • A guarantee that you will get into graduate school.

Why should I take GRDSCH200?

GRDSCH200 is for students who are sure they are going to apply to graduate school and for students who are unsure if graduate school is the right option for them or want more information in order to consider pursing a graduate degree. Graduate school is a large commitment and big life decision. Being clear about why you want to go and what you intend to pursue helps you make the most of your time, energy and money. We want to help you make better decisions towards your academic and career goals and carefully consider your options.

Who takes GRDSCH200?

GRDSCH200 is an open course offered to juniors, seniors and non-matriculated post-BACC students from all majors and disciplines. Students taking the course apply to a wide range of schools and programs located all around the world. Here are just some of the highlights about the over 450 students who have taken our course over the past 5 years.

  • Students enter the course with a range of preparedness for graduate school; from just seeking information to knowing exactly when they want to apply and to which specific program(s)
  • The course serves students from varying educational backgrounds including first-generation, transfer students and international students.
  • Roughly 30% of students are from natural science programs, 37% of students are from the social sciences and 33% of students are from humanities – making it an equally diverse course in terms of disciplinary field
  • Students in the course apply to programs all over the world, not just UW
  • Students in the course also apply to programs seeking a wide variety of potential graduate degrees; While the majority apply to MS and PhD program, many of our students apply to professional programs and other terminal graduate degrees

When is the best time to take the class?

There is no “right” time, but feedback from students has given us some insight on the timing for students to take the course. Graduate school applications are typically due between December and February for Fall admissions. For students who want to transition straight from their Bachelor’s degree into a graduate program, this generally means apply during the first quarter of their senior year. Seniors who have taken the course in the Fall right before their application is due have reported feeling very pressured to get the content out of the class in time to apply. For that reason, students who want to transition straight from their undergrad to graduate school we recommend that you take the course either Spring or Summer quarter finishing your junior year. However, the class can benefit you no matter where you are at in the application process even if it’s doing to the application while taking the class or if you might choose to take a gap year or more.

Is GRDSCH200 only for those interested in applying for graduate school at the UW?

NO! We want to help prepare UW undergraduates to be the strongest applicants possible regardless of where you want to pursue graduate school. While we would love for our undergraduates to apply to graduate school at the UW, we also are thrilled to see UW undergraduates applying to programs world-wide.

How do I register?

This 10-week, 2 C/NC course is for juniors and seniors who know they want to pursue, or are considering the possibility of, graduate education; learn first-hand from faculty and staff involved in graduate admissions how to find a good program fit and how to prepare effective application materials.

The course seeks to engage students in determining the right “fit” for their individual graduate education goals through three primary objectives:

  • Investigation: What is your desire to attend graduate school?
    • What you need to know about the graduate school experience
  • Revelation: What do graduate school admission committees actually expect?
    • Demystify the process
    • Personal statements, resumes/CVs and letters of recommendation
  • Preparation: How does investigation and revelation lead to finding a “good fit,” and how do you chart a course of action?
    • Why do you want to go? When do you want to go? Where do you want to go?
    • What do you want to do? How can you do it?

Find the Course in the Time Schedule