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Prospective Students FAQ

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  •   Important Dates

    The Department offers fall admission only. The application deadline for Fall 2021 admissions is December 15, 2020. Application decisions are made in early February.

    The application is available online; please see Graduate Office webpage for applicants.

    If you have further questions please contact: Dr. Ben Bagozzi.

  •   Admissions Requirements

    The Department of Political Science and International Relations establishes admissions requirements. Our decision to admit an applicant to the graduate program is primarily based on:

    • Unofficial transcript containing GPA (recommended GPA is 3.5 or above or equivalent).
    • Three letters of recommendation that speak to your academic performance and potential
    • Statement of purpose articulating why you are interested in a PhD in Political Science, what you hope to do with that degree and the reasons you are applying to our program.
    • TOEFL (minimum 600/250/100) or IELTS (7.5) for international students
    • GRE scores are optional for the current admissions cycle. If you wish to apply without a GRE score, please enter a future GRE exam date into the application when prompted. This need not be an actual exam date. Entering any future date will allow your application to be sent on to our review committee where it will receive full consideration. Reporting your scores is entirely optional. If you chose to not submit a GRE score, this will have no bearing on the competitiveness of your application. If you have any questions regarding this process, email
    • Writing sample: An academic piece from a course or thesis is required.
    • The ETS University of Delaware institution code is 5811. If your goal is to receive a PhD, please apply to the PhD program (whether you have a BA or an MA).  Application deadline is December 15
  •   How much is the application fee and where do I send it?

    ​A $75 application fee can be paid via credit card when the online application is submitted.

  •   Will applications received without payment of the application fee be processed?


  •   Where do I send my transcripts?

    ​Unofficial transcripts may be submitted as part of your online application. An official transcript may be requested at a later date.

  •   Where do I send my three letters of recommendation / resume / statement of objectives / personal statement?

    ​Please follow the instructions given on the Graduate Admissions website for uploading letters of recommendation/resume/statement of objectives/personal statement.

  •   What is required of a writing sample?

    ​The writing sample may be a course paper, a chapter of a BA or MA degree thesis, or a published work that best reflects the applicant’s writing and research aptitudes.

  •   Where do I send my writing sample / additional documents?

    ​A writing sample or additional documents must be submitted as part of your online application.

  •   Is TOEFL required for international students with no U.S. degree?

    ​TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) is required. A score of at least 600 for the paper-based test or a score of 100 on the internet-based test is preferred for consideration for admission.

  •   What undergraduate grade point average do I need for admission to the Department of Political Science and International Relations graduate program?

    ​Normally, a 3.25 overall and 3.5 in major field and 3.5 in any prior graduate work in political science is preferred for consideration for admission.

  •   Does the Department of Political Science and International Relations accept applications for Spring admission?

    ​No, the Political Science and International Relations graduate program does not accept students for Spring admission. All of our students begin their coursework in September, in the Fall semester.

  •   If I meet your above stated minimum criteria for admission will I be admitted to your graduate program?

    ​Admission to the graduate program is competitive. Those who meet stated requirements are not guaranteed admission, nor are those who fail to meet all of those requirements necessarily precluded from admission if they offer other appropriate strengths.

  •   What are my chances of receiving financial assistance from the department for my graduate work?

    The department funds the majority of graduate students through graduate assistantships, usually in the form of Teaching Assistantships and Research Assistantships. All applicants are considered for these assistantships at the time of their application. In addition, the department offers a Soles Fellowship for an incoming student interested in civic engagement or public service.


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