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FAQ for Prospective Doctoral Students

PhD in International Education

For general questions about your application, please read the Graduate Admissions Application Guide.

What is the deadline for the application?

December 1

Where can I find the application?

The application is available on the Graduate Admissions website.  

Is the GRE required?

Yes, the GRE is required.

Can I submit a GMAT score instead of the GRE?

No, we only accept the GRE.

What is the average GRE score?

There is no fixed cut-off score for admission to the program and we review all applications holistically.  Successful candidates have typically had scores in the 70th percentile. Special consideration may be made for students who did not go through the US education system. 

Do I need to submit letters of recommendation?

Yes, three letters of recommendation are required for the PhD program. Please note that these should be academic references.

Where do I send supplementary materials, such as letters of recommendation and transcripts?

You can now upload transcripts, GRE and TOEFL scores directly to the online application. Letters of recommendation must be submitted by your recommenders through the online system.

Can I have the application fee waived?

The NYU Steinhardt Office of Graduate Admissions handles fee waiver requests. Please review the Policy on Application Fee Waivers to determine how to properly request a fee waiver.

What are the English proficiency exam requirements?

All applicants whose native language is not English are required to take one of the following English proficiency exams and submit the score: TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic. See more information on English proficiency testing.

What is the GPA requirement?

There is no fixed GPA requirement; evaluations of undergraduate and MA GPA scores depend on the quality of the institution as well as other factors. However, successful candidates typically have high prior GPAs.

Is funding available?

Yes, all full-time admitted PhD students are fully funded. More information about the funding package is provided at the time of admission. 

Is an interview required for admissions?

No, we do not conduct admissions interviews.

Can I defer my admission?

NYU Steinhardt does not allow deferrals and the Office of Graduate Admissions is no longer permitting applicants to update their application and application materials for future consideration. Applicants who wish to be considered for a future semester must reapply by submitting a new application including all of the supporting materials by the application deadline.

What are the qualifications for admissions?

Applicants will be evaluated on four main criteria:

  • Statement of purpose
  • Research interests
  • GRE scores
  • Academic references

We are looking for applicants who are a good fit with our department and whose research interests align with those of our faculty members.

What should I include in my statement of purpose?

Your statement of purpose should describe your research interests. You should begin to formulate the questions you want to study and outline the preliminary methods for how you will go about conducting your research.

Your statement should also identify a person in our department who would be your primary mentor and additional faculty in our department you would be interested in working with.

Do I need to have a fully developed dissertation topic when I apply?

Your dissertation topic does not have to be fully developed at the time of application. However, you should have a clear idea about your research interest. 

Is there a language requirement for admissions into the program?


Can I transfer credits I earned from a master's degree to the doctoral requirements?

No. Credits previously earned for a different degree cannot be applied toward the doctoral program.

When can I attend an open house?

Open houses is hosted once a year in the fall. We do not host open houses during the summer. For the open house date, check the website in August.

I cannot attend the open house. Can I still meet with an adviser or faculty member to discuss the program?

Yes, send an email to request a phone appointment with an adviser or faculty member.

I live far away and cannot meet with an adviser or faculty member in person. Can I make a phone appointment?

Yes, send an email to request a phone appointment with an adviser or faculty member.

Can you mail an information packet on the program to my home address?

We do not send materials via mail. Detailed information can be found on the program website, including course requirements, course schedules, job placements, grant materials, faculty biographies, and contact information for current students. After reviewing the website, if you have additional questions, please email an adviser.

When will I receive a decision from NYU?

Decisions are typically emailed in mid- to late-March.

I live overseas and snail mail is inconsistent. Can the admissions decision be emailed to me?

At this time official decisions are sent out by email. Please contact the admissions office directly at 212-998-5030 or via email if you have questions.