The first step you need to take when weighing the decision of switching schools for a graduate degree is to determine the cost to attend your current college versus an alternative graduate school. Many graduate degree programs are costly. In an article written by Ben Edwards, he reported that Business Week estimated last December that the average tuition for a two-year MBA program now tops $60,000 – that doesn’t include room and board or other fees. So for top graduate schools in many fields – not just business – the whole graduate school bill can easily top $100,000. (Moneysmartlife.com, 2010) If your school offers an affordable graduate program, then you may want to consider continuing your education there.
Next, you should understand what graduate degree programs and courses are available at the alternative graduate school. Typically degree seekers continue their education based on their undergraduate career path, however, with the constant change in the economy, many students are switching majors (as seen in the example above). Nonetheless, you should understand the degree you want to pursue in graduate school and the time and courses needed to complete the degree.
Accreditation is one of the most important factors to consider when you are thinking of switching schools for a graduate degree. As you look for various graduate schools, keep in mind their accreditation status, which range from regional to national. Accreditation guidelines help future employers identify if your degree is valid or not.
Finally, you need to realistically assess your needs and the requirements of each graduate school. When assessing your needs, be mindful of your actual ability to travel/move for the graduate program, your work needs, and the needs of loved ones you may support. The requirements of each graduate school vary in regards to admissions, test scores, work experience, competitiveness and other decisional factors that may make it difficult for you to get accepted. If you have no educational experience in your targeted degree field, then some schools may require x amount of years of work experience for consideration instead.