Graduate Admissions in Psychology: Transcripts and the Effect of Withdrawals

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Graduate admissions directors (N = 139) answered a 10-item Likert-type survey and 1 open-ended question about the impact of transcripts and withdrawals in the graduate admissions process. Factors of interest were (a) who looks at transcripts, (b) why look at transcripts, and (c) the effect of withdrawals on gaining graduate school admission. At least 2 faculty members generally examine transcripts; transcripts continue to be an important source of information; a low Graduate Record Exam or grade point average may prompt a closer examination of the transcripts; and although 1 or 2 withdrawals may not hurt an applicant’s chances for admission, withdrawals from particular courses or certain patterns of withdrawals may have a detrimental effect.