How to Apply


University Park

Fall Admissions: January 10

Fall Admissions: January 10
Spring Admissions: September 15

World Campus

M.Ed Only
Fall Admissions: June 15
Spring Admissions: October 15
Summer Admissions: February 15

Students applying for admission to the Higher Education Program at Penn State must electronically submit all application materials to the Graduate School at Penn State. The Graduate School confirms eligibility for admission of all applicants. The Higher Education Program will select and recommend applicants for offers of admission.

Applying to the Graduate School

Complete the Admission Application to The Graduate School.

As part of The Graduate School application, you will be asked to upload/supply the following documents/information:

  • Resume;
  • Statement of Purpose: A written essay discussing your professional goals and how, in light of the strengths you possess, the study of higher education will bring you closer to realization of those goals (PLEASE NOTE: Master's applicants please be sure to indicate clearly the particular completion option in which you are interested.);
  • Three letters of recommendation: Two academic and one professional (employer) are preferred (academic references in a placement file are acceptable). You will be asked to submit the name and email addresses of your referents.  The referents will be sent an email message directing them to the appropriate site to upload their letter of recommendation. You will be notified via email when a reference letter is submitted, but you will not be able to view the letter (PLEASE NOTE: All of your reference letters must be submitted before the application deadline to be considered for admission.);
  • Doctoral applicants should submit official GRE/GMAT/LSAT test scores no more than 5 years old: (For GRE, request the testing agency submit an original score report using the institution code for Penn State 2660; for GMAT, select Penn State, then select campus, then select Higher Education.);
  • Master's applicants should submit official GRE/GMAT/LSAT/MAT test scores no more than five (5) years old. (For GRE/MAT, request the testing agency submit an original score report using the institution code for Penn State 2660; for GMAT, select Penn State, then select campus, then select Higher Education.) Test scores are not required for M.Ed. applicants who have either: 1) attained three years of full-time experience in higher education; 2) have a Master’s degree in another field; or 3) completed the Institutional Research Certificate Program at Penn State;
  • Doctoral Assistantship Application (if applicable);
  • A copy of official transcripts/documents from all post-secondary institutions of higher education attended must be uploaded to your application. International applicants must upload university records in the language of instruction (and copies of an official English translation if English is not the language of instruction).

Applicants recommended for admission by the Higher Education Program will be notified via the online graduate admission system. Once a student accepts a program recommendation for admission, the Graduate School will request official/original transcripts/documents that must be sent from the originating institutions in the official language of the institution(s) attended (and if the language of instruction is not English, an official English translation must also be sent). The Graduate School will review and confirm all official documents before finalizing the offer of admission.

International Applicants Only:

  • Official TOEFL score report, if applicable.
  • Applicants should contact the University Office of Global Programs to learn about requirements for VISAs, registration, etc.