- How to Apply
- Office of International Affairs
- International House
- English as a Second Language
International applicants to programs leading to a master's or a doctor of philosophy degree should hold an American bachelor's degree or an equivalent foreign degree requiring at least sixteen years of primary, secondary, and university education. Applicants should have received basic competence in their fields with excellent academic records (A or B+ and First or Upper Second Class degrees). A student who does not meet the normal academic requirements but who would like to be considered for admission should explain in detail in a separate letter his or her additional qualifications.
How to Apply
Applicants from foreign countries should follow the General Procedures for Application. In addition, they will need to submit scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) in place of the GRE, and follow the important guidelines listed below for submitting official academic records for each year of international post-secondary education.
English Language Requirement
International applicants for admission to the University of Chicago must meet the English language requirements outlined below. Please note that the University policy states minimum requirements. Individual Divisions or Schools may require higher minimum scores.
The University of Chicago accepts either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) for the purpose of meeting the English language requirement.
The minimum required score in the “new” TOEFL (the IBT TOEFL) is 104 overall, with sub scores of 26 each. The required scores in the “old” TOEFL are 600 with sub scores of 60 or better each or 250 with sub scores of 25 or better each, depending on whether you took the paper or computer version of the test.
Minimum required scores in the IELTS are an overall score of 7, with sub scores of 7 each. (Note: students are required to take the Academic Reading/Writing test within IELTS, not the General Training Reading/Writing test).
The English language requirement may be waived if the applicant studied in full-time status for at least one academic year within the last five years in the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, or English medium universities in Canada or South Africa. Students who studied in English in other countries—for example, India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Singapore, etc.—are not exempt from the English language requirement.
Please note: TOEFL or IELTS Score Reports are valid for two years and scores will be considered expired if the test was taken more than two years prior to the application deadline. Photocopies of TOEFL or IELTS Score Reports will not be considered valid.
More information regarding the TOEFL may be obtained from:
P.O. Box 6151
Princeton, NJ 08541
Phone: 877-863-3546 (toll free inside the United States, U.S. territories, and Canada)
Phone: 609-771-7100 (outside the United States, U.S. territories and Canada)
The school code for the TOEFL is 1832; the department code is 4901.
More information regarding the IELTS may be obtained from its Web site, at: http://www.ielts.org/ . The IELTS is jointly managed by the University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations , the British Council , and IDP Education Australia .
Official Academic Records
Applicants must submit official academic records (transcripts or mark-sheets) with grading scales for each year of post-secondary education (college or university). If detailed transcripts are not available, the certificates must be accompanied by official statements showing the class or quality of the degrees or diplomas as well as marks actually received on degree examinations as compared with the maximum marks obtainable. Official copies of credentials must be validated by a school administrative officer, such as the registrar or an official of the issuing body. Unless institutional policy prohibits, official documents should be assembled by the applicant and sent with all other application materials in the same envelope. Otherwise, the registrar of the institution should forward the transcripts or records directly to the Dean of Students in the Divinity School.
Documents should be issued in their original language. All documents not issued in English must be accompanied by official translations. The translation should be prepared or verified by a person whose position requires knowledge of both English and the pertinent language, i.e., a professor of English at a French university.
To clarify the University's expectations regarding previous educational achievements of foreign students, specific guidelines are listed below:
Applicants from Europe should submit official records of all university courses and examinations taken and the grades received. Photocopies of each student book, where available, should be certified by a school official.
Applicants from French-patterned educational systems, including Francophone Africa, should have completed, or expect to complete, the Maïtrise or a qualification such as a Diplôme des Grandes Ecôles.
Applicants from British-patterned educational systems, including Anglophone Africa, should have an Honours Bachelor's Degree in First or Upper Second Division and should present photocopies of their graduate and post-graduate diplomas. A statement showing the division or grade of the degree is necessary, as is an official list enumerating the subjects studied.
Applicants from India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan should have a master's degree completed by the time of matriculation at the University of Chicago. Applicants should present official certificates or certified copies of the degrees and diplomas earned. Applicants must also submit detailed mark sheets covering the work completed for each year for all degrees. Wherever possible, the rank in the university or in the examination should be indicated. True copies made by the registrar or the appropriate administrative official of the university attended, bearing the official seal and signature, are required. True copies prepared and signed by faculty members, or by city or government officials, are not considered official.
Applicants from Latin America should submit official records of their credentials from all universities attended. An official transcript covering all courses taken and grades received should be submitted for each school attended, together with a photocopy of the degree or diploma received.
Applicants from the Near and Middle East should present university records that describe each subject studied, by years, with grades received and degree or diploma awarded.
Applicants from the People's Republic of China who have studied at universities since 1978 should present the results of their university entrance examinations in addition to their other transcripts. Records should be presented in Chinese accompanied by an English translation.
Applicants from other East Asian countries should present official detailed transcripts from their universities that include all courses and grades received and degrees awarded.
If the schools attended no longer exist, or if it is impossible to obtain official transcripts from them, applicants should ask the Ministry of Education of the appropriate country to furnish an official statement testifying to the impossibility of obtaining records. Applicants must also ask the Ministry to supply the University of Chicago with a list of the courses ordinarily required by that school or university.
International students are encouraged to explore appropriate funding opportunities such as Fulbright-Hays, DAAD, SSHRC (Canada Council), Harkness, and World Council of Churches grants. Contact the Office of International Affairs for more information.
Admitted international applicants must provide verification of adequate financial support, and submit official records of all academic work completed and degrees received before visa documents can be issued. For further information, applicants should contact the Office of International Affairs at:
Office of International Affair
1414 East 59th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637
The State of Illinois requires all students entering a college or university to show proof of immunization against certain vaccine-preventable diseases before registration. All registered students must show proof of immunity to the following diseases:
-- Measles (rubeola)
-- German measles (rubella)
Two measles shots given no less than one month apart are required. The diptheria/tetanus shot must be given within the past 10 years.
In addition, all international students are required to have three diptheria/tetanus shots, with at least one given in the past ten years. The information presented on the immunization record card must be in English, or accompanied by a certified translation. The Student Care Center will administer vaccines for a fee.