Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

The following responses were derived from the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s SAA Graduate School Night.

  1. How can you tell if you are a good candidate for school? GRE® Scores? GPA Scores?
    • Research your programs and talk about your best attributes for the program in your statement to make it more personal.
    • Professors are looking for the connections you made in your statement and your research about the program.
    • Look at the mission statement and values.
  2. When writing personal statements, did you write a brand new essay for each program, or have one or two paragraphs to rewrite?
    • Rewrite a paragraph or two – watch for name changes.
    • Used a template for letter format.
    • One person wrote a statement for each program.
    • Label and double-check all statements to ensure you are sending the proper statement to the approximate school.
  3. What if your background isn’t communication sciences and disorders?
    • Think about why you are drawn to audiology. Use your background to explain on how you could combine it or what influenced your interests.
    • Use it to make you stand out instead of how to make yourself fit in.
  4. Are letters of intent that same as cover letter or personal statement?
    • Essentially yes, they are the same.
    • Cover letters introduce you, explain your purpose for writing, highlight a few of your experiences and skills, and request an opportunity to meet personally with the potential employer.
    • Personal statements are how you will introduce yourself to the university, which will reflect your personality and intellect.
  5. Some programs ask you to write about research experiences or leadership experiences that were not available in my undergraduate program. How can I write about these “lack of experiences” in my personal statement?
    • Use it as a strength about how excited you are to experience that in the graduate program.
  6. How many programs did you apply for?
    • Answers ranged from 4 to 10 programs.
    • This is a personal decision because there are a lot of factors to consider, such as size of the school, clinical experiences, fit into their GPA/GRE® requirements, and tuition and funding.
  7. How should I interpret CV vs Resume?
    • Resumes are meant to summarize your education and experience for graduate school applications or future employers.
    • A curriculum vita (CV) tends to be used more for research and academic positions, so there is much more detail included in the descriptions. Typically, it is much longer than 2 pages.
  8. Should you visit or tour the program before applying?
    • The answer to this question is personal. If your funding allows for travel, then you can certainly visit the program and speak with faculty and students. However, you could wait until you receive your acceptance letters to visit the programs.
  9. Did you talk about your personal interests?
    • Depends… if your personal interest is binge-watching television shows on Netflix, then definitely not. However, if your personal interest is related to audiology or seeing patients, then you will definitely want to talk about it. If your personal interest is something between these two examples, then decide how important it will be for your academic performance in graduate school. For example, you wouldn’t write about being in a sorority, unless you served a leadership role and discuss leadership skills gained.
  10. Should I talk about negative experiences, such as a low grade in a class or low GRE® score?
    • In some cases, yes. If your academic record is weak due to personal issues, such as a death in the family, medical issues, etc., it might be worthwhile to provide a thoughtful explanation. However, if you would prefer not to draw attention to it, then it would be best not to bring it up at all.