Graduate Study and College Teaching

The academic qualification for most positions in college teaching is possession of the master’s or doctor’s degree. Teacher certification is not required. The doctorate often is also the avenue to a career in research, education, or industry as well as to various executive responsibilities in management.

Usually the master’s degree requires at least one year of full-time study beyond the bachelor’s degree. The doctorate requires at least three additional years. Graduate study presupposes fundamental preparation in a special field as well as supplementary skills in foreign or computer language or statistics that should be acquired in the undergraduate program.

Students contemplating graduate study should become familiar with conventional procedures, the comparative merits of various institutions, and the availability of financial assistance. Faculties and graduate schools tend to have particular strengths in special fields, with corresponding prestige for their graduates. Fellowships, assistantships, and other types of appointments often are available to students who require financial assistance. Information is available at the University or public library, on the Internet, in graduate school bulletins, the annual Directory of Graduate Programs published by the Educational Testing Service, and the annual Peterson’s Guide to Graduate and Professional Programs. Early in senior year, students should contact selected graduate schools to obtain applications for admission, financial aid, and other information. Most graduate schools now have online applications.

Early and sustained consultation with John Carroll faculty will be most helpful in planning graduate study. Faculty may assist in submitting applications for admission to graduate study or graduate appointments. Credentials commonly must be submitted in the late fall and early spring, and selections are usually announced in mid-spring.

Undergraduate preparation generally requires a full major in the chosen field. Quality of achievement as evidenced by grades is an important index to probable success in graduate study. Undergraduate transcripts are required and examined by the graduate school for both admission and appointments. Another common expectation is good performance on an examination, which should be taken as early in the senior year as necessary to submit test scores by the date designated by each graduate school. Students must determine whether a particular graduate school requires the Graduate Record Examination General (Aptitude) Test or Subject (Advanced) Test or both. Other tests such as the GMAT or the Miller Analogies Test may also be required. Information about testing dates and locations may be obtained at this website:

Students must take the initiative in seeking advice and obtaining application forms, meeting requirements, and enlisting recommendations. The dean and the faculty of the major department, however, are ready to assist in any reasonable way to provide endorsements warranted by the student’s ability and achievement.