Evaluation Criteria Used By Graduate School Selection Committees

In order of importance

Program Requirements (Standards Unique to Individual Programs)

  1. GPA (Major GPA, Overall GPA)
  2. GRE Scores (Quantitative, Verbal, Analytic Writing; Psychology GRE if applicable)

Once you meet the program requirements, the Graduate School Selection Committees will assess you on the following:

  1. Letters of Recommendation
  2. Experience (Research, Field work, applicable Volunteer work)
  3. Personal Statement – Includes who you wish to work with, and whether that potential advisor is accepting students
  4. Resume or C.V.

The former will help the committee assess whether or not you will fit with the mission of the program.  Other areas that will help to determine a “good fit”:

  1. Quality of application materials
  2. Personality characteristics about work and school ethic
  3. Special projects and honors/graduate coursework
  4. Diversity

If you are deemed worthy by the Graduate Committee to be offered an interview, this will be the most important opportunity to show them that you are who you said you were, you have a good attitude, and you really want to attend that specific program for valid reasons.  You will often meet with multiple people on an interview, and the program will spend money to bring you there to attend.  Be professional! 

Another option is that the program may schedule an over-the-phone interview with you.