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The decision to attend graduate school to work on a Masters or a PhD degree should not be taken lightly. It involves a potentially long time commitment as well as a substantial financial outlay. Aside from deciding on a disciplinary specialty/degree at a particular university, perhaps the most important issue is the choice of a graduate advisor. Indeed, this latter choice may be intimately tied up with the selection of a university as well as the degree. This is especially true when seeking a PhD. If the MS degree is your goal, the choice of graduate advisor may not be so critical, at least initially. But it can still very much affect the long-term outcome of your graduate studies.