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Course Materials

Course Learning Outcomes

As you successfully complete this course, you will be able to

  1. Understand how to construct effective graduate school documents to become a successful and competitive applicant.
  2. Create well-crafted personal statements, resumes and applications.
  3. Learn to secure reference letters, scholarships and financial aid.
  4. Understand and practice successful interviewing strategies.
  5. Learn to effectively approach and take graduate school entrance exams.

Course Materials

Get Into Graduate School: A Strategic Approach for Master’s and Doctoral Candidates, 4th ed. (New York: Kaplan Publishing, 2011).

Kaplan is a leader in assisting students seeking graduate school admission. This text is written by eight authors, all specialists in their respective areas. This text is one that encourages you to understand proven techniques in the application process to get positive results. I hope this book helps you make better decisions and teaches you strategies that will help you be far more effective in your graduate school preparation.

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When you thoroughly prepare yourself through reading the material presented in the text, you should be able to complete the required assignments. All of your written assignments should be completed in Word or PDF format and submitted electronically through the course.


Summary: 5 computer-graded assignments; may be resubmitted for a fee.

At the end of each lesson will be a short quiz. These quiz questions are multiple choice/true false. They will cover the reading material and the course lesson content. These quizzes will help you prepare for the final exam.

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This course includes one final exam. The final exam consists of thirty-two multiple-choice questions and five short answer questions covering important concepts. It is approximately 10 percent of your course grade.

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Grading and Assessment

Grade Breakdown Points
Lesson 1

Reference Paper

Lesson 1 Quiz



Lesson 2 Graduate School Program Research Sheet 20

Resume or CV

Lesson 2 Quiz



Lesson 3 Take Graduate School Practice Test (in your area) 20
Answer 10 Professional Interview Questions 20

Mock Application to Graduate School

Lesson 3 Quiz



Lesson 4

Complete Personal Statement

Lesson 4 Quiz



Lesson 5 Financing My Degree 20

Success in Graduate School

Lesson 5 Quiz



Final Exam 20
Total 225

Grading for this course will be based on a percent system as follows:

Grading Scale
A 93–100
A− 90–92
B+ 87–89
B 83–86
B− 80–82
C+ 77–79
C 73–76
C− 70–72
D+ 67–69
D 63–66
D− 60–62
E (Fail) 0–59

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Copyright Notice

The materials used in connection with this online course are only for the use of students enrolled in this course for purposes associated with this course and may not be retained or further disseminated. Any copying or further dissemination of these materials may be subject to applicable U.S. Copyright Laws. For questions or more information, please visit the BYU Copyright Licensing Office website.

“Members of the BYU community who willfully disregard this Copyright Policy or the BYU Copyright Guidelines place themselves individually at risk of legal action and may incur personal liability for their conduct. The unauthorized use or distribution of copyrighted material, including unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may subject individuals to civil and criminal liabilities, including actual and statutory damages, costs and fees of litigation, fines, and imprisonment

Violations of the Copyright Policy may result in university disciplinary action including termination of university enrollment or employment.” (Emphasis added. Excerpt taken from the BYU Copyright Policy)

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University Policy - Title IX Statement

Preventing & Responding to Sexual Misconduct

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Brigham Young University prohibits unlawful sex discrimination against any participant in its education programs or activities. The university also prohibits sexual harassment—including sexual violence—committed by or against students, university employees, and visitors to campus. As outlined in university policy, sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking are considered forms of "Sexual Misconduct" prohibited by the university.

University policy requires all university employees in a teaching, managerial, or supervisory role to report all incidents of Sexual Misconduct that come to their attention in any way, including but not limited to face-to-face conversations, a written class assignment or paper, class discussion, email, text, or social media post. Incidents of Sexual Misconduct should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator at t9coordinator@byu.edu or (801) 422-8692. Reports may also be submitted through EthicsPoint at https://titleix.byu.edu/report or 1-888-238-1062 (24-hours a day).

BYU offers confidential resources for those affected by Sexual Misconduct, including the university’s Victim Advocate, as well as a number of non-confidential resources and services that may be helpful. Additional information about Title IX, the university’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, reporting requirements, and resources can be found at http://titleix.byu.edu or by contacting the university’s Title IX Coordinator.

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Accessibility Notice

BYU is committed to providing a working and learning atmosphere which reasonably accommodates persons with disabilities who are otherwise qualified to participate in BYU's programs and activities. In this spirit, BYU Independent Study aspires to improve web accessibility for users. While not required by law, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Levels A and AA provide a wide range of helpful recommendations to make Web content more accessible. BYU Independent Study strives to apply WCAG 2.0 recommendations where feasible, but may deviate from any recommendations that would result in an undue hardship to BYU Independent Study or alterations to program and course content and objectives. If you have questions about accessibility, or if you need to report problems with any accessibility features please see our Accessibilities and Accommodations Web Page.

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Course Policies

These policies are specific to this course. For additional information about general policies, please refer to Independent Study Course Policies page.


5 instructor-graded assignments; may be resubmitted for a fee.

Resubmit an assignment for a fee.


1 proctored, final exam; may retake once for a fee; must pass the final exam to earn credit for the course.

Retake an exam for a fee.

Getting Help

Please use the help menu in this course to contact Independent Study or your instructor. You can find a list of free tutors available to BYU Independent Study students on the Free Tutoring Services website.

Note: The Harold B. Lee Library website provides a number of online resources and librarians are available via phone, chat, and email to answer questions about library-related issues.

Inappropriate Use of Course Content

All course materials (e.g., outlines, handouts, syllabi, exams, quizzes, media, lecture content, audio and video recordings, etc.) are proprietary. Students are prohibited from posting or selling any such course materials without the express written permission of BYU Independent Study. To do so is a violation of the Brigham Young University Honor Code.

Copyright © 2016 Brigham Young University. All rights reserved.

Published by the
Department of Independent Study
Division of Continuing Education
Brigham Young University
120 MORC
Provo, Utah 84602-1514