- General Information 2.0
- Application 2.1
- Admission Criteria 2.2
- Admission Materials 2.3
- Admission Classifications 2.4
- Reassignment of Admission Classification 2.5
- Admission Decision Procedures 2.6
- English as a Second Language (ESL) Requirement 2.7
- Spoken English Requirement 2.8
- Transfer of Graduate Program 2.9
- University Faculty and Administrators 2.10
General Information - 2.0
The admission of students to the Graduate School is the joint responsibility of the Graduate Studies Committee of the local program and the Graduate School. However, the Graduate School has the final authority for making admission decisions. The Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions receives and processes the application, collecting the application fee, transcripts, and test scores (if applicable). The Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions is also responsible for sending the official admission decision.
Application - 2.1
Online Application. All degree and non-degree graduate applicants must use the online application available at the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions website to obtain graduate program information and apply.
Application Deadlines. Domestic applicants interested in being considered for a Graduate School Fellowship must apply before deadlines posted by the graduate program of interest. International applicants interested in being considered for a Graduate School Fellowship must apply by the last working day in November. The Graduate School application process opens at the beginning of autumn semester and early applications can be considered by graduate programs as of that time. Graduate Program deadlines for receiving applications may vary but should be no later than May 15 for summer session, July 15 for autumn semester, and December 1 for spring semester. Domestic applicants who apply sixty days prior to the start of a semester or session can be considered for admission to that term. Earlier dates may apply for international applicants who require visa sponsorship. Graduate Studies Committees establish admission application deadlines and are not required to admit students every semester, session or term.
Application Fee. All Graduate School applicants are required to pay a nonrefundable application fee. Waivers to the application fee are offered by various colleges on campus, as well as, by the Graduate School. If an applicant believes that they meet the criteria for a waiver, they should visit The Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions fee waiver website for further details.
Admission Criteria - 2.2
Admission Criteria. An applicant must submit documentation that demonstrates fulfillment of the following admission criteria or equivalent qualifications:
- An earned four-year baccalaureate degree, graduate degree, or professional degree (or approved equivalent) from a regionally accredited college or university by the expected date of entry.
- A minimum of a 3.0 cumulative grade-point average (cGPA) (on the 4.0 scale used at this university) in the last degree relevant to the program of study earned by the applicant.
- For international students, the cGPA is calculated on the home institution’s grading scheme and the grade key on the transcript is then utilized to approximate an equivalent US grade based on the educational system of that country.
- Applicants whose last degree relevant to the program of study was earned at an institution with a grading scheme where a numerical cGPA cannot be calculated (e.g. narrative evaluation, satisfactory/unsatisfactory, etc.) require additional Graduate School consideration. Once a graduate program reviews and recommends the applicant for admission, the program is required to submit a petition to the Graduate School for a final determination.
- Please note that there are other university processes or systems (e.g., the fellowship competition, etc.) that may have different requirements and, as such, may require additional review. These reviews add time to the admissions process. Graduate programs, as well as prospective students, should plan accordingly to ensure that they meet all necessary deadlines.
- Prerequisite training that will enable the student to pursue the graduate program to which admission is sought.
- A minimum score of 79 on a valid internet-based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL-IBT), or 7.0 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). This requirement applies only to an applicant from a country where the first language is not English, unless a bachelor’s degree or higher was earned from a country exempt from the English proficiency requirements. Residents of Puerto Rico and asylees in the United States for more than one year are also exempt from providing English language proficiency test scores.
- Additional criteria published by the Graduate Studies Committee of the local program (e.g., professional accreditation or certification).
- The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) are not required for admission to the Graduate School. Certain graduate programs may require the GRE or GMAT and students will need to comply with the program’s admission requirements or have a waiver from the program. The GRE and GMAT are scheduled on a continual basis during the year throughout the United States and overseas. Pre-registration is required, and a fee is charged. Additional information may be obtained from the websites of the Educational Testing Service.
Additional Admission Recommendations. For applicants who received their last degree (relevant to the level of study) from an unaccredited college or university, the Graduate School strongly recommends that programs include other metrics of academic quality such as the GRE, GMAT, or Subject Specific test scores for their admission criteria. Alternatively, these students can enroll in the Graduate Bridge Program (GBP) and transition out of the GBP when the program is satisfied the student can be successful in their program. All applicants whose cGPA for the last degree earned is below 3.0 may be conditionally admitted if they meet the criteria for the program. If standardized test scores are required by the program, admission will not be considered until test scores have been received. Programs may opt into the GBP in order to recruit students with a cGPA below 3.0 that may not be candidates for conditional enrollment. The GBP is also an option for students that have a cGPA over the 3.0 minimum but have other reasons for being underprepared for Graduate School at Ohio State.
Admission Materials - 2.3
Admission Materials. An applicant must submit the following materials (see instructions accompanying The Ohio State University Graduate School admission application for further details):
- Completed application.
- Non-refundable application fee (unless waived, Section 2.1).
- An official transcript from each college or university attended, listing all courses taken, grades and degrees earned, and dates of graduation (Ohio State students need not submit transcripts from this university; these will be supplied by internal procedures.)
- Letters of recommendation from persons acquainted with the applicant’s academic program, scholastic ability, or professional performance.
- A brief autobiographical statement describing the applicant’s educational and professional goals and objectives.
- Additional material required by the graduate program’s Graduate Studies Committee.
- A curriculum vitae or resume if interested in fellowship consideration.
- English proficiency requirement (international students).
Note: Each admitted international applicant will also be required to submit certain financial documentation indicating that financial resources are available to defray the cost of graduate education.
Admission Classifications - 2.4
Applicants are admitted to the Graduate School in one of five classifications: regular, provisional, conditional, graduate non-degree, or the Graduate Bridge Program.
Regular. Applicants who have met all Graduate School and Graduate Studies Committee admission criteria and who have been approved by the Graduate Studies Committee to pursue a graduate degree are designated as regular students.
Provisional. Applicants who are recommended as regular admits but have one or more validating item(s) not available at the time of admission, such as an official undergraduate transcript or other items required by their graduate degree program, are designated as provisional students by the Graduate Studies Committee or by the Graduate School. Additional information may be found on the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions website.
International students who are admitted to an Ohio State graduate program under an international cooperative graduate degree agreement (ICGDA) for a combined or a dual degree program are designated as provisional students by the Graduate Studies Committee or by the Graduate School until the requirements stated in the specific ICGDA are met.
Conditional. Applicants whose academic records do not meet requirements for regular admission but indicate the potential to perform satisfactorily in a graduate degree program may be admitted as conditional students by the Graduate School. This classification is assigned for one or more of the following reasons, for example: The applicant has a baccalaureate or professional degree but the college or university is unaccredited, less than an overall 3.0 cGPA in last degree earned with evidence of improvement in latter terms and/or in coursework relevant to the graduate program, and/or subject matter deficiencies as specified by the Graduate Studies Committee. Applicants whose last degree earned was from an institution that does not utilize a grading scheme where a numerical cGPA can be calculated (e.g., narrative evaluation, satisfactory/unsatisfactory, etc.) may also be considered for conditional admission.
It is recommended that conditional students not enroll for more than nine credit hours per autumn or spring semester and not hold graduate associate (GA) appointments requiring them to give instruction in the area of subject matter deficiency. If the conditional designation results from a low entering cGPA, the candidate is ineligible to hold an appointment as a GA. Conditional students are ineligible for Graduate School fellowships.
Students admitted to the Graduate School on a conditional basis must maintain a 3.0 cGPA during the first 10 hours of graded graduate credit. Programs petitioning for a student’s conditional admission may also be asked to provide a mentorship plan for Graduate School consideration.
Conditional Admission for International Students. The Graduate School’s policy on conditional admission based on English proficiency is intended to facilitate admission of academically qualified, degree-seeking international students who have not satisfied the minimum English language requirement, yet are being considered for admission by a graduate program. To be considered for conditional admission, international applicants must meet the following criteria: an IBT TOEFL score of 61 or higher, but lower than the required 79; or an IELTS score of 5.0 or higher, but lower than 7.0; and formal recommendation of the conditional admission from the graduate program. Students who are conditionally admitted under these criteria will attend and successfully complete the American Language Program (ALP) for one autumn semester, spring semester, or summer term and obtain a minimum score of 550 (in the old) or 19 (on each section of the new) paper-based (TOEFL) institutional testing program (TOEFL-ITP). Students are not permitted to hold graduate associate (GA) appointments while attending ALP.
Graduate Bridge Program (GBP). The GBP is a bridge to Graduate School that allows potential students who are not regularly or conditionally admitted, for up to one full academic year, to receive mentoring and complete graduate-level coursework before fully transitioning to regular student status within an academic program. The GBP is geared toward prospective graduate students who do not meet the criteria for regular admission and do not have strong enough academic records for conditional admission. Examples of candidates for GBP are those who desire to explore graduate school or enter a graduate discipline very different from their undergraduate discipline, life-long learners returning to the university after a significant lapse of time, and individuals with weak undergraduate records but through relevant life experiences are now better prepared to meet the academic challenges of graduate school. Please see Appendix G for additional information regarding the GBP.
Graduate Non-Degree. U.S. applicants who do not intend to pursue a graduate degree at this university may register in the graduate non-degree classification. Eligibility is extended to those who are enrolled in a graduate program at another U.S. university who wish to study for one term as a transient student at Ohio State and transfer course credit back to their home institution and to those enrolled in established exchange programs or special university-sponsored workshops. International applicants with an F or J visa are restricted in their ability to be admitted as a graduate non-degree student. Such applicants will be reviewed by the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions.
On verification of a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution, graduate non-degree students may enroll in the Graduate School at large to take graduate courses open to graduate non-degree students. They are not registered in a specific graduate degree program, nor does their enrollment require the approval of a Graduate Studies Committee. Graduate non-degree students may not register for courses numbered 8998 and 8999.
If a graduate non-degree student is admitted to a graduate degree program, no more than 10 hours of graduate credit accumulated while in this non-degree classification may be counted toward a graduate degree. If a dual degree student, the credits may not be used as dual or shared credit. If a graduate non-degree student is admitted to a graduate certificate program, no more than four hours of semester graduate credit accumulated while in this non-degree classification may be counted toward the certificate. Within this limit, the number of graduate credit hours is determined by the Graduate Studies Committee of the student’s intended degree program. Regardless of the hours counted toward degree requirements, all courses taken for graduate credit in graduate non-degree status count in the total earned hours; graded courses (A-EN) count in the cumulative grade-point average. Prior to the effective semester, session or term of admission to the degree program, the Graduate Studies Committee notifies the Graduate School of which courses are to count toward that degree.
Specifying Conditions of Admission. The Graduate Studies Committee is responsible for specifying the conditions of admission. The committee must state not only the requirements of conditional admission but also the means by which the requirements are to be satisfied and the time limit for completing them. Once a conditional student has been assigned an advisor, the Graduate Studies Committee is responsible for informing the advisor of the admission conditions.
Reassignment of Admission Classification - 2.5
Provisional to Regular. The provisional restriction is removed by the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions upon receipt of the materials pending at the time of admission, or upon meeting the requirements specified in the ICGDA, when applicable Submission of official transcripts should follow the guidelines specified by the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions.
Conditional to Regular. It is the dual responsibility of the Graduate Studies Committee and the Graduate School to monitor the progress of students in the conditional classification. Each semester, the Graduate School notifies the Graduate Studies Committee of students listed as conditional. On completion of the conditions of admission set by the Graduate Studies Committee, the chair asks the Graduate School to change the student’s classification to regular.
The status of a student admitted in the conditional classification should be changed to regular by the Graduate Studies Committee before the Application to Graduate is submitted. However, if the Graduate Studies Committee Chair signs the Application to Graduate for a conditional student, the Graduate School assumes that the student has fulfilled the conditions of admission and the student’s classification is changed to regular by the Graduate School. Failure to complete the conditional admission requirements within the time limit specified by the Graduate Studies Committee results in the student being denied further registration in that graduate program by the Graduate School.
Graduate Bridge Program (GBP) to Regular. It is the dual responsibility of the Graduate Studies Committee and the Graduate School to monitor the progress of students in the GBP. Students in the GBP who have achieved the 3.0 minimum GPA would be enrolled into their mentoring graduate program to which they have been accepted as a regular graduate student or apply to other graduate programs at the end of any term. Students in the GBP with a graduate GPA less than 3.0 may be conditionally accepted into the graduate program, but this is not guaranteed by the GBP commitment.
Graduate Non-Degree to Regular. Graduate non-degree students who wish to become regular students at this university must submit another application to the Graduate School through the Admissions Office.
Admission Decision Procedures - 2.6
Application Worksheet Form. Once the applicant’s application material is complete, the graduate program requests from the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions a GPA calculation for those applicants the program wishes to review. The GPA calculation is reflected on the Application Worksheet form. The applications are then reviewed by the Graduate Studies Committee of the program for an admission recommendation.
Admit. If the Graduate Studies Committee recommends admission as a regular student and if the applicant meets minimum Graduate School admission criteria, the Admissions Office notifies the applicant of admission by e-mail. If the Graduate Studies Committee recommends admission as a regular student but the application requires additional consideration (e.g., the student’s last degree earned was from an institution that does not utilize a grading scheme where a numerical cGPA can be calculated, etc.), the program refers the application, via petition, to the Graduate School for a final determination.
Provisional. If a required document (e.g. an official transcript) is missing in the application material of a student who is recommended for regular admit, or for incoming international students under an approved ICGDA, the Admissions Office notifies the applicant of provisional admission by e-mail.
Conditional. If the Graduate Studies Committee recommends the conditional admission of a student whose record does not meet published Graduate School admission criteria, the program refers the application, via petition, to the Graduate School for a final determination. The candidate is ineligible to hold an appointment as a GA. The Admissions Office notifies the applicant of the final admission decision by e-mail.
Denial of Admission. If the Graduate Studies Committee or the Graduate School recommends denial of admission, the Admissions Office notifies the applicant of that decision by e-mail.
Admission Notice. Graduate School admission is valid only for the autumn or spring semester or summer term and year indicated in the letter/e-mail from the Admissions Office. Admitted students wishing to defer enrollment should contact their graduate program office to see if the program can accommodate the request. All application material becomes the property of The Ohio State University and will not be returned to the applicant or forwarded to another institution.
English as a Second Language (ESL) Requirement - 2.7
Upon arrival, students who are from a country exempted from the English proficiency requirement or who have received a bachelor’s degree or higher from a U.S. institution within 24 months of their matriculation into an Ohio State graduate program are exempt from the Academic English Writing Assessment (previously known as the ESL Composition Placement Essay). Based on the essay result, students needing English writing instruction will be placed in EDUTL 5901 or 5902. The student is expected to complete EDUTL 5902 within one calendar year after beginning graduate school. The Graduate Studies Committee in the student’s graduate program may request an extension of the time limit. Such requests must be sent to the Graduate School for review. The Graduate School will monitor the student’s progress toward completing the ESL course sequence.
Exemption from sitting for the Academic English Writing Assessment may be granted to students who either have a total score of 114 on the IBT TOEFL, or a total score of 101 and a score of 28 on the writing section. Alternatively, students with a score of 9.0 on the IELTS, or an overall score of 8.0 and a score of 8.0 on the writing module are also eligible for exemption.
Spoken English Requirement - 2.8
International or permanent resident graduate students for whom English is not the first language must certify their proficiency in spoken English before assuming any Graduate Teaching Associate (GTA) instructional duties. They may become certified by scoring 28 or higher on the spoken portion of the TOEFL IBT, 8.5 on the IELTS, or by scoring at the appropriate level on the Oral Proficiency Assessment (OPA) administered by the Intercultural English Language Programs (IELP).
Transfer of Graduate Program - 2.9
Current students or students who graduated from an Ohio State graduate program within the past three terms are required to notify the Graduate Studies Committee in the current program of their intent to transfer into a new graduate program. Current students may transfer from one graduate program to another by completing an Intra-Graduate Transfer (IGT) application with the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions. This application requires the approval of the Graduate Studies Committee in the receiving program. Graduate Associates should speak with their current advisor and supervisor about any potential impacts to their appointment.
The Graduate School will verify student-provided information pertaining to the student’s academic performance to the Graduate Studies Committee of the proposed graduate program. The Graduate Studies Committee may require additional material from the student before review. If the Graduate Studies Committee approves the transfer, it will specify the admission classification and the courses already completed that will count toward its graduate degree program.
The Graduate Studies Committee must notify the Graduate School of the admission classification and courses to count prior to the effective autumn or spring semester or summer term of transfer. Graduate School Fellowships (Section 10) do not automatically transfer with students who are approved for transfer into a different graduate program. Doctoral candidacy status (Section 7) does not transfer to a new graduate program.
University Faculty and Administrators - 2.10
Faculty. No tenure-track faculty member, clinical/teaching/practice faculty member, or research faculty member will be permitted to pursue a degree offered by the tenure initiating unit (TIU) in which the faculty member holds an appointment. In those instances where faculty members wish to pursue degrees in other units or colleges, they are subject to the provisions of University Rule 3335-9-11.
Administrators. IIn those instances where senior administrative and professional appointees wish to pursue graduate degrees, they are subject to the provisions of University Rule 3335-9-11.