Several years ago, I wrote a series of three posts for my (now hacked dead) blog The Extratextuals about applying to grad schools in media, cultural, and communication studies. They were some of the most read posts on the blog (admittedly an easy competition!), but with a new site, I thought I’d revisit the posts and republish with edits.

First, a big warning: these represent my own personal thoughts, beliefs, and observations. They shouldn’t be read as an official statement from Media and Cultural Studies or Communication Arts at University of Wisconsin, Madison. But they are about media, communication, and cultural studies: different fields have different norms, and the advice here may be horrible for other fields. Moreover, I have no secret access to truth and The Way It Is, and whereas some commentators out there recklessly suggest they do know The Way It Is, I can’t pretend to offer that. Take what I say with a grain of salt, therefore. Indeed, a key piece of advice I’d offer from the outset is to ask for advice from many people: we all see different things, don’t see different things, and you’ll get the lay of the land better if you ask more people.

My original post had three sections, and I’ll stick to them here, albeit in one post organized by tab.