Graduate school enrollment is on the rise because of the failing job market. So, one might ask, what do I have to do to get into grad school? What can I do to boost my candidacy in the eyes of my prospective institution? Is there anyway I can get out of working my ass off? How will I pay for it? Well, here are the answers to all of those questions, that’ll hopefully ease your mind in the submarine with it’s sites set on the briny depths of academia.

Do The Work

Okay, let me get this out of the way. You will not get into graduate school without putting a lot of work into it. By putting a lot of work into school, I’m implying that you “work smarter, not harder.” This means different classes/professors require different workloads. For instance, you may need to read the chapters before a test three or four times in order to feel fully prepared in one class. In another class the syllabus might say what chapters to read, but you get a study guide that tells you what pages to focus on. Just prioritize and you’ll wind up with a high GPA and a head start in getting into the grad school of your dreams.

Get the In

After working hard in their classes and reeping the benefits of good grades, becoming buddy buddy with professors will be mad easy. Professors can help you out so much when it comes to getting into grad school. They help in three major ways.

One, if they publish research (like journal articles) regularly, there’s a chance you could have your own spot on the byline for helping out. If you can say you were published on your grad school application, you’ll get pushed close to the front of the line. Two, your professor might know people at other universities or colleges. If he/she can put a call in, that’s ten times better than a written reference. Third, when you work with professors they get to know you, giving them more to say on their references. Anything more than “Jim was a good student… He got an A.” is going to make you stand out.

Pay For It

You’ve done work with your professor and have everything lined up on your application. The thought of money has crossed your mind before but never passed that point. Okay, before the latter happens let’s get something out in the open, there are some easy ways to pay for grad school besides taking out more loans. Look to see what kind of assistantships your new institution offers. The pay for answering questions in an undergrad class a couple of times a week could be free tuition or even more. I’ve seen it happen.