You can choose to study a postgraduate degree by looking at different graduate schools and courses. But what is grad school actually?

Grad school is a higher education institution that awards postgraduate degrees. Most commonly, it refers to masters or doctorate programs. Before applying to grad school, you will need to have earned an undergraduate (bachelor) degree.

There are two options for grad schools: one can find them in academic departments at universities and another way, which is to say, separate colleges that offer only postgraduate education.

Students will usually pursue a master’s degree or doctorate in the same subject they studied at the undergraduate level. This is to gain more knowledge in a specific area. There are many options to study in a different area of study if your career interests change or you want to learn new skills.

There are many master’s programs available for graduates from any subject. Many will also consider work experience in addition to academic qualifications. If applicants have to complete a particular set of courses modules, it might be possible to do a fast-track course or conversion course to get to the required level.

Is the term “grad school” used elsewhere?

Although the term “grad school” is most commonly used in North America and elsewhere, some universities around the world may use the term to refer to their postgraduate programs as the Graduate School of Law, or Graduate School of Medicine. Some universities do not use the term “graduate” to include both undergraduate and graduate courses within the same faculty.

Different types of grad schools

Professional School

A professional school can help you prepare for a career as a lawyer or other related professions. These professional schools offer more work placements and a more practical learning environment.

Academic school

Postgraduate degrees are not limited to professional schools. They can be divided between academic research and vocational training. This will vary depending on the subject. Some fields are more suited to research while others are more geared towards professional practice. Many postgraduate degrees allow students to combine both of these skills, which allows them to be useful in a variety of graduate career paths.

What is the difference between undergraduate and grad school?

You should have developed an independent learning style during your undergraduate degree. At grad school, you can further develop this with the support of your academics.

Undergraduate studies are primarily focused on passing on knowledge that has already been acquired by the human race. Postgraduate studies are more focused on contributing to the body of knowledge. Students are encouraged to do their own research. This is especially true if you choose a research-based master’s or Ph.D.

Postgraduate courses often have smaller classes, which means students are able to engage with their tutors and classmates more directly.

What is a “terminal degree”?

The term ‘terminal degree’ is most common in the US. It refers to the highest academic degree possible in a particular field of study. This can be a PhD or professional master’s degree in engineering or architecture. These degrees can often be followed by a PhD, but academic master’s degrees are not considered terminal degrees. However, there are exceptions. For example, the Master of Fine Arts qualification is considered a final degree in the US.

Meet grad school admissions officers face-to-face at the World Grad School Tour.