International Applicants

International visa-seeking applicants submit their complete application and accompanying visa request and financial certification paperwork by the following deadlines to allow the university sufficient time to process the visa request. Scroll to the bottom of the page for more information about the Visa Request and Financial Certification process.

Fall Admission: May 1

Spring Admission: September 1

To apply for admission, begin by reviewing the detailed directions on the application instructions page. In addition to the general application materials described, international visa-seeking applicants must also meet the following requirements to be considered for admission. 

English Language Test Requirements

Applicants who are not citizens of countries where English is the official language are required to submit results from one approved English language exam. In addition to the United States, the countries where English is the official language are listed here. Approved tests include the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), academic International English Language Testing System (IELTS), the Pearsons Test of English (PTE), and Duolingo English Test (DET).

Exceptions to this policy may be granted to applicants who:

  • Hold a bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degree from an institution in which English is the language of instruction and the official language of the country in which the university is located; or 
  • Hold a bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degree from an institution that is accredited by a U.S. regional accrediting agency (see list of acceptable schools).

​English language test scores (TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, and DET) may not be more than two years old. To ensure TOEFL scores are sent to GW, please use institutional code 5246.  An institutional code is not required to send IELTS, PTE, or DET scores to GW.

To be considered for admission, the minimum required scores are as follows:

Test Type On-Campus Applicants Online Education Applicants

Paper-based: 550

Internet-based: 80

Paper-based: 600

Internet-based: 100

IELTS 6.0 overall, with no band score below 5.0 7.0 overall, with no band score below 6.0
PTE 53 68
Duolingo English Test (DET) 110 120

Students in On-Campus programs with scores below the minimum may be eligible to apply to the program with an additional requirement to take Applied English Studies courses. 

GW English for Academic Purposes

In their first term at GW, international students enrolled in On-Campus programs are required to register for an English for Academic Purposes (EAP) course. The required course will be indicated in the student’s letter of admission. Those who are assigned EAP courses should anticipate additional tuition expenses as well as a possible extended period of time required to complete their degree. EAP courses are not available online. For more information please visit the EAP website.

Students with the following English language test scores or higher are exempt from the EAP course requirement:

Test Type Minimum Scores
TOEFL Paper-based: 600; Internet-based: 100
IELTS 7.0 overall, with no band score below 6.0
PTE 68
DET 120

International Transcript Evaluation

All international transcripts must be submitted to an approved, accredited independent evaluation agency prior to submission. A list of acceptable foreign credential evaluation services is available through National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) or Association of Credential Evaluation Services (AICE)

Be sure to request a detailed course-by-course evaluation showing all course titles, credit hours, grades, recommended United States degree equivalency, grade point average (GPA), and date of degree conferral. 

Visa Request and Financial Certification

In addition to submitting the application materials, international applicants requesting an I-20 or DS-2019 from GW must submit the following materials: 

  • Completed Visa Request form signed by the applicant and/or any sponsor(s)
  • Financial support documents showing proof of funding based on your program as outlined in the Visa Request Form addendum
  • Legible copy of the photo and biographical page of your current passport. Please note that your passport must be valid for at least six months.
  • Copy of the Dependent Information form and biographical and photo page of current passport of dependents (if you are bringing dependents)

Applicants currently in the US must also submit the following:

Applicants currently in F1 or J1 status:

  • Copy of your I-20 or DS-2019
  • Completed GW Transfer Form
  • Employment authorization card (if on Optional Practical Training)

Additional Resources

Two-Week Bootcamp Course: All admitted international students* are required to enroll in a writing bootcamp course two weeks prior to the start of Fall classes.  The two-week bootcamp course “The Power of the Written Word: Diplomacy” meets from 9am – 12pm on GW’s main campus. International students enrolled for the Fall term will need to arrive to GW 3-4 weeks prior to the start of the Fall term in order to attend this required bootcamp class (please consider these dates when arranging for housing). GSPM does not charge tuition for the bootcamp course (0-credit). The Director of Student Services will reach out to admitted international students and send a link where they can sign up.

The bootcamp course is designed to help strengthen language proficiency in ways that directly relate to the types of communication assignments that will be expected of students throughout their graduate studies at GSPM. The professor, Cheryl W. Thompson, has over 25 years of journalism experience, most recently at The Washington Post. She was part of the reporting team that won the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for national reporting, and she is a 2011 recipient of an Emmy Award.

* Exemptions from this requirement include the following: 1.) Admitted international students who hold a degree from a college or university in a country where English is the official language and the medium of instruction. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States. No other exceptions are made. 2.) International students enrolled in GSPM’s Maestría en Comunicación Política y Gobernanza Estratégica Master’s program, which is taught entirely in Spanish, online.

Career Events: GSPM encourages domestic and international students to attend career events to make connections and to build a better understanding of the steps that lead to job satisfaction. Students will learn about scheduled Career Events via email (weekly e-newsletter) once the Fall term begins.

University Writing Center: The University Writing Center provides trained tutors to help domestic and international students with common communication challenges.

Library Session: GSPM recommends that domestic and internationals students attend informational sessions at the library to learn about research tools and capabilities offered at GW’s Gelman Library. GSPM arranges library informational sessions throughout the year, and will learn about scheduled sessions via email (weekly e-newsletter) once the Fall term begins.