Graduate Students' Academic Advisement

A graduate student refers to someone who works towards a degree beyond Bachelor's degree. Since graduate educational system in the U. S. may not be similar to the one in your country, this section will address important issues you should be aware of before and during the time being a graduate student in a U.S. university.


To better prepare you for the academic demands of higher education in the U.S., these activities are designed to expose you to authentic experience through video clips showing meetings between academic advisors and students at California State University, Los Angeles (CSULA), an urban state university situated in the heart of the Los Angeles metropolitan area.


   
Sequence:
Click on each box to explore the activities in the order as shown.

1   2   3   4

 

5

 

6

FINAL CHECKLIST

Program
Requirements

Elective
Courses

Degree Completion Options

Signing a Contract

Applying for an MBA


In order to be familiarized with the new academic culture in U.S. universities, a careful program planning with the departmental academic advisor is very important for every graduate student. This section will expose you to video clips showing a meeting between a newly admitted international student with an academic advisor of the Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) department in Charter College of Education, CSULA.

 
Program Planning: Program Requirements

 

The purpose of a program planning is for the student to discuss about program requirements with her or his academic advisor. Program requirements usually consist of prerequisites, required courseselective courses, and degree completion options. However, each academic program in U.S. universities has different set of requirements for students to follow, therefore, you must check with the department that you plan to apply or attend for specific program requirements.

 

To learn more about the program requirements of the TESOL Program, print out the Program Information sheet. Pay special attention to the list under prerequisites and required core.

 

Note: You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to access this page.

 

View the following video clip about the program's prerequisites and general requirements. While viewing, do the following:

    1) Make a check in front of the prerequisite items that this student has completed.

    2) Ask yourself these questions: Which item(s) from the prerequisites that you have already completed or achieved? If applicable, are these prerequisites similar or different from the ones required by the academic program that you plan to attend?

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Video Clip

Program Planning:
Program Requirements

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Incorporate the information learned from Step 1 and Step 2 to complete this multiple-choice activity.

 

  • To learn more about the steps required in order to complete a Master's degree, check out the Program Sequence provided by Charter College of Education, CSULA.


Program Planning: Elective Courses

Apart from required courses, students can enroll in elective courses in order to fulfill the program requirements. Electives are courses which provide students with the opportunity to explore other areas of interest that complement their major. Usually, elective courses are not free choices. Most programs have a preferred list of courses from certain colleges or departments that the students have to select from.

 

To view the list of all elective courses that students in the TESOL Program can select from, print out the Program Information sheet. Pay special attention to the list under Electives.


Note:
You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to access this page.


View the following video clip about selecting elective courses. While viewing, ask yourself these questions:

    1) How would this student benefit from each elective course she selected?

    2) Do you agree with her selections? Why or why not?

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Video Clip

Program Planning:
Elective Courses

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Incorporate the information learned from Step 1 and Step 2 to complete this multiple-choice activity.


Program Planning: Degree Completion Options

In addition to the required courses and electives, many academic programs in the U.S. require students to work on either thesis, project, or comprehensive examination in order for them to fully complete a degree. The activities in this section will help you learn more about the degree completion options that you may have to select once you attend an academic program in a U.S. university.

To find out which degree completion option that you would be a good candidate for, whether it is thesis / project, or comprehensive exam, print out and complete this short quiz.

Note:
You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to access this page.

View the following video clip about the degree completion options available at the TESOL Program, CSULA. While viewing, ask yourself these questions:

    1) What are the major differences between each degree completion option?

    2) Which degree completion option would you choose? Why? How would you benefit from your selection?

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Video Clip

Program Planning:
Degree Completion Options

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Use the information learned from Step 2 to complete this short-answer activity.


Program Planning: Signing a Contract

Once the academic advisor and the student have agreed on all the courses and completion option to be taken in the program, they both will sign an agreement, or a contract.

Print out and look into the TESOL Program Contract that will be used in Step 2.

Note:
You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to access this page.

View the following video clip about signing a program contract. While viewing, pay attention to these issues:

    1) The type of information required on the program contract sheet.

    2) How to further get assistance from the departmental academic advisors.

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Video Clip

Program Planning:
Signing a Contract

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Incorporate the information learned from Step 1 and Step 2 to complete this multiple-choice activity.


Applying for a Master's degree program in U.S. universities can be significantly different from what is required in your country since you will be applying as an international student. The application procedures may take longer and may be more complicated. Therefore, it is important that you are aware of the rules and regulations of both the academic program and the institution that you plan to attend.
 

To learn more about how to apply for the Master's of Business Administration (MBA) Program, print out this application procedures page provided by College of Business and Economics, CSULA.


Note:
You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to access this page.


View the following video clip about a student who plans to apply for an MBA. While viewing, pay attention to these issues:

    1) The type of information provided on the MBA program Web site.

    2) The admission services that are provided 'online' for applicants.

    3) Ask yourself these questions: Will I be applying as an international or domestic applicant? What are my filing periods? How or where can I get more information that is not provided online?

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Video Clip

Applying for MBA

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Incorporate the information learned from Step 1 and Step 2 to complete this multiple-choice activity.

 

  • To learn more about general admission policies to a graduate program, read this graduate programs admission page of College of Business and Economics at CSULA.

  • To see the list of courses required in the MBA Program, visit this MBA Catalog page.


Let's move on to the Final Checklist


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This page was last updated on January 30, 2005