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Information and Tips for Applying to Graduate School

Updated: Feb 20, 2020

By Brianna Teaff, Copy Editor

As students start to think about and prepare for their next steps after graduation, graduate school becomes a popular topic. Joel Templeton, senior graduate admission counselor at Hardin-Simmons University, shared some information and tips for students who are wanting to apply for graduate school. 

Students who are interested in applying for graduate school at HSU can apply online at under the “Admissions” tab. More information about the application process or graduate programs that HSU offers can also be found under Admissions tab > Graduate Admissions. 

Templeton explained how the process of applying for graduate school at HSU works. “Along with your application, there are supplementary items that you must submit such as letters of recommendation, transcript and/or an essay. Each program is different, but usually the requirements are similar. For HSU students who are applying to a graduate program at HSU, we will automatically upload [their] HSU transcript for them for free,” Templeton said. 

Templeton shared an idea of what graduate schools look for in applications. “Most schools have pretty detailed acceptance requirements related to GPA and sometimes major/your bachelor's degree. Sometimes certain programs look at test scores such as the GRE and rely on letters of recommendations and interviews,” Templeton said. 

Templeton shared a few tips for making your graduate school application stand out. “Making sure you have a good resume is a great place to start. Students should also work on achieving a good GPA, having good supplements for your application such as good recommendations from professors you have a good relationship with, being involved on campus that can be reflected on a resume and apply with confidence,” Templeton said. 

Templeton shared some words of encouragement for those looking to apply to graduate school. “Graduate school is often perceived as an intimidating next step, especially because students don’t always know what goes into the application process. The reality is it is just an extra step beyond your senior year. The content becomes harder, but the undergraduate years prepares you to take the next step, especially at HSU,” Templeton said. 

Templeton continued, “When you start looking for graduate programs, make sure you do your research and know what each program is going to require of your application. Also, while researching, make sure you understand what each program can offer you and make sure it is the right fit for you. Consider factors such as reputation, content, cost and if it is important to you, location. Make good use of the admission counselors at the university you’re applying to as they are meant to be your advocate,” Templeton said. 

Any student considering graduate school, even if the program is outside of HSU, Templeton welcomes them to come by his office and chat with him regarding the opportunities for graduate school. His office is located in the Dyess Welcome Center/Hunter Hall in office 114.


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