Admissions blog: Who gets a grad review?
Not all applicants who complete Master's degrees will receive a "graduate review" of their application. Most of the time, course-based Master's students will be assessed as undergraduate applicants - meaning they need to meet the undergraduate GPA requirements. If not all graduate students receive a graduate review of their application, who is subject to the lower GPA cutoff?
To assess if someone qualifies for a graduate review, we are looking to see if they have substantial productivity during their graduate degree. Typically, for your application to warrant a graduate review, you would need to complete a research-based Master's or a PhD, and have at least one first author publication that has been published by the time of application on your Academic CV. It is important to note, however, that whether or not an application warrants a graduate review is assessed by the admissions committee at the time of application, and no decision on how your application was assessed will be released to you.
Our ultimate goal in this assesment is to review candidates in the stream in which they will be most competitive.
FAQ's on Grad Reviews
What if I am enrolled in a research-based Master's and plan to have a publication submitted by the time of application?
In this case, it is likely that you will be assessed as an undergraduate applicant. Though we can never make guarantees, typically the paper must be published by the time of application for your file to warrant a graduate review.
Is it possible to get a graduate review of my application without a first-author publication?
Potentially. The admissions committee will assess all of the academic productivity on your Academic CV. The first-author publication is the piece that will most likely qualify you for a graduate review. However, if you have substantial productivity in the forms of posters, presentations, patents, conferences etc. - it is possible that you may still receive a graduate review. Ultimately the admissions committee will place you in whichever applicant pool that you will be most competitive - whether that is undergraduate or graduate.
Do course-based Master's students ever receive a graduate review?
In some cases, yes. If you were able to accrue substantial productivity during your course-based Master's, you can submit an Academic CV and graduate supervisors letter as part of your application. Again, the admissions committee will make the decision at the time of application and no decision on how your application was assessed will be released to you. In most cases, course-based Master's students are not able to accrue substantial productivity to warrant a graduate review of their application.
Does my course-based Master's provide any benefit to my application?
Everything that you do has the potential to benefit your application. While a course-based Master's program is unlikely to warrant a graduate review of your application, you are still able to learn a lot from such a program. You will still disclose that you have completed a course-based Master's program on your application, and this will still be taken into consideration during the application process. Keep in mind, your acomplishments from your course-based Master's program might be worth highlighting on your autobiographical sketch - so it can certainly enhance this section of your application as well.
What is the benefit of a graduate review?
The benefit of a graduate review is that your Academic CV and graduate supervisors letter are assessed and you are subject to a lower undergraduate admission GPA (3.0 is posted, with 3.5 being considered competitive for grad students). We assess all applicants (other than international) in one pool and choose the most competitive overall applicants for interviews.