grad schools, financial aid, and scholarships

<p>I just looked at a thread that talks about saving money in college so you have enough to go to grad school. I've always thought that grad school offers like 95% of their accepted students full rides. I forgot where I got that information. Maybe that offer is limited only to Iowa State college of medicine, idk.</p>

<p>I need clarification.</p>

<p>Graduate programs which award a PhD generally pay tuition and a living stipend for students. PhD students are often required to be research assistants or teaching assistants in order to earn their tuition waivers.</p>

<p>Master's programs can sometimes be funded by companies, fellowships, or teaching assistantships, but are most frequently funded by students.</p>

<p>Professional programs, such as medical school, law school, and business school, are generally funded by students themselves.</p>

<p>The best Ph.D programs tend to offer full funding to Ph.D students--that is a waiver of tuition and a living stipend. The amount of the stipend will vary by institution and area of concentration (science and engineering stipends tend to be funded largely from third party grants and tend to be more generous; humanities and social science students tend to be funded completely by the university and, thus, they tend to be less generous). Normally, funded Ph.D students are expected to to be a teaching assistant or a research assistant to earn the funding. Lesser Ph.D programs (often from less endowed universities) grant partial or no funding except to the very top students (unfunded students in those places are expected to take loans).</p>

<p>Masters programs are usually not funded, although there are exceptions for exceptional students. Sometimes a research or teaching assistant is available if there are insufficient Ph.D students.</p>

<p>Professional programs (medicine, law, business, etc.) are usually not funded--loans are the normal route here.</p>

<p>you guys made me more confused. forgive me for being stupid in this process but after college and before getting a full time job, what's in between, exactly?</p>

<p>It depends on what you want that job to be. :)</p>

<p>Of course, if you want to be a doctor or a lawyer, you go to medical school or law school. (That's the easy case to understand.)</p>

<p>If you want to be an academic (a scientist or a historian or an economist, for example), you would go to a PhD program, sometimes after completing a master's and sometimes after taking a few years off from school to work.</p>

<p>If you want to be something like an engineer, you would go to a master's program, sometimes after taking a few years off from school to work. </p>

<p>Does that clarify the situation somewhat? Is your planned career path something other than what I've listed?</p>

<p>There's a decent number of engineers in my field that get PhDs. MS degrees are often a sign of not being able to cut it for a PhD.</p>

<p>After college, most people get a full time job. Some go to grad or professional school. Some, if they have the money or generous parents, travel for a while. Some move back with their parents and ponder what they are going to do with their lives. Basically, you're in the real world now.</p>

There's a decent number of engineers in my field that get PhDs. MS degrees are often a sign of not being able to cut it for a PhD.


That depends on the field. Many people in my field have no intentions on getting a PhD; it simply isn't worth if you do a cost-benefit analysis. The research experience you gain doesn't do you any good in my industry, but that may be different in other fields.</p>

<p>"After college, most people get a full time job"
well say I want to be part of the upper class with a good paying job. Does that arbitrarily mean that I'd have to go to grad school?</p>

<p>Also, what % of people out of college get scholarships in grad school. If it varies then a figure would help. I would also like to know the amount of the scholarships: small amount --> full ride.

<p>That's all very dependent upon what department/program and what school you're in.</p>

<p>For my friends and myself applying to engineering grad schools from CMU, all of us that wanted to go were able to get fully-funded fellowships, but I think that sort of percentage drops off rapidly as you get to lower ranked schools.</p>


There's a decent number of engineers in my field that get PhDs. MS degrees are often a sign of not being able to cut it for a PhD.


<p>There are a lot of people who want to get MS engineering degrees without bothering with PhD programs. The truth is that 4 years of engineering education is insufficient for some jobs/fields, and the pay differential between BS and MS holders tends to be large enough to justify paying out full tuition for a masters program.</p>

<p>As for the people who aren't able "to cut it" for PhD, that's mostly because most schools will award an MS to people who don't complete the PhD program - even if that school doesn't actually have any "MS students" enrolled - which is why it's gained a bit of a reputation as a "consolation prize"</p>

<p>But there's nothing wrong with going to school to get an MS on it's own, and I'd go so far to say that the vast majority of people with MS in engineering never pursued a PhD at all.</p>

<p>It's not possible to speak about "grad school" generally without getting into specifics about which degree and which field. And if you don't know which degree and which field you want, then you can't think of going to graduate school yet -- graduate school isn't something anyone has to do, and you have to think carefully about which field you'd like to pursue.</p>