PhD Admissions

Global Studies admits Ph.D. applicants for the fall quarter only. For a successful application, the online graduate application materials listed below and the application fee must be submitted by December 15, 11:59 PM PST. 

Applicants must demonstrate strong oral and written communication skills, a capacity for excellence in theoretical research and critical thinking, and an interest in problem-solving. Ideal candidates will also have experience with foreign countries or cultures, completed volunteer work or internships, and demonstrated a strong and focused interest in global affairs.

The admissions committee will consider all of the candidate’s materials, along with an interview(s), when making decisions about admission. The candidate’s academic orientation and fit with our field and Core faculty are also important considerations that should be reflected in the Statement of Purpose essay as listed below.

Before applying, applicants should read and research the published work and field of our Core faculty in your intended area of specialization (i.e., Global Cultures & Ideology, Global Governance, or Global Political Economy & Development). Decisions are based upon the overall strength of the application as a whole, compared to other applicants in that pool, and not solely on the basis of one particular aspect. 

  • Statement of Purpose: 2-3 pages, formatted with 1.5 to 2 line spacing, and include:
    • Why you are seeking to pursue a Ph.D. degree in Global Studies;
    • Academic and relevant achievements in theoretical research and critical thinking; 
    • Descriptions of the Global Studies-related issues in which are you interested in researching;
    • Examples of the main research questions driving your theoretical research interest in global processes;
    • Methods to pursue within your interested global issues, and elaborate on a realistic research agenda timeline;
    • Which Global Studies Core faculty members that you would propose to work with and why;
    • Where in academia you foresee working after obtaining a Ph.D. degree in Global Studies.
  • Curriculum Vitae or Resume: Include education along with foreign languages and your level of comprehension (i.e. fluent, read only, write, etc.). Applicants are required to demonstrate the equivalent of at least two years of proficiency in a second language with a "B" or better in the final course, or already be fluent in a second language. 
  • Writing Sample: 15-20 page sample of academic writing involving research on a global issue or related topic. The writing sample helps us assess your theoretical, analytical and writing skills. All written work should include a bibliography, footnotes, or references, if applicable. All writing samples must be written in English or translated into English by a certified translator.
  • Official transcripts i.e., Official transcripts ordered by the applicant to themselves, and opened & uploaded by the applicant to the application. Please list all institutions in which you completed 12 or more units in the 'Education History' section of the application and upload an official transcript.
  • GRE scores: GRE scores are NOT used as part of the application process.
  • English Language Exam Scores (if required) Applicants whose native language is not English are required to take the TOEFL, IELTS, or Duolingo English Test, with the exception of applicants who have completed an undergraduate or graduate degree at an institution whose official & sole language of instruction is English. To see if your institution is listed as an English-only institution, please conduct a search through the World Higher Education Database.
  • 3 Letters of Recommendation: The department prefers that LORs be academic in nature (e.g., from professors in your major). Non-academic letters may be useful when they relate directly to the intended area of study, such as work experience, internships, teaching, etc.
    • When evaluating an applicant, letter writers should address in their LOR the following:
      • Circumstances under which the recommender has known the applicant;
      • Overal intellectual ability (e.g., academic & scholarly ability, analytical skills, critical thinking and theoretical skills)
      • Independence of thought (e.g., insight, imagination, creativity) and effectiveness of both oral and written communication;
      • Self-motivation, persistence, self-discipline, thoroughness, etc., to complete graduate-level theoretical research work; 
      • Overall probable contributions to understanding complex global forces and related social, cultural, economic, and political processes 

U.S. permanent residents who received a degree from a U.S. institution should follow the application guidelines for U.S. applicants. U.S. permanent residents who received a degree from an international institution should follow the instructions for international applicants.