Application Requirements

To apply to one of our programs, applicants are required to submit the following:

  • Completed online application form
  • Current résumé/CV
  • Statement of purpose
  • Official transcripts from all academic institutions from which you earned credit
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • $55 application fee

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Résumé

Your résumé/CV allows the admissions committee to review your background and previous experiences. We encourage you to be detailed and thorough in preparing your résumé and to include internship and volunteer experience in addition to traditional full-time work experiences.

Statement of Purpose

Your statement of purpose should clearly state your reason for undertaking graduate studies in your chosen field, what you expect from the program, and how you can contribute to the program. It should include your research interests and your academic and career objectives. As your statement offers the committee the opportunity to get to know you, discussion of your relevant qualifications and experiences is encouraged. The statement should also demonstrate your composition skills and analytical ability. While there is no minimum or maximum length, we suggest a length of approximately 1,200 words.

Transcripts

All applicants to the School of International Service’s (SIS) graduate programs must possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution by the date of anticipated enrollment. Applicants are required to submit transcripts from all institutions attended, including community colleges and transfer credits.

Many schools issue transcripts electronically, either through their own Web services or through vendors. If this option is available through the institutions you attended, please specify that your transcript(s) be sent to applicationservices@ironline.american.edu or select American University International Relations Online if listed as an option through a vendor. This will expedite the delivery of your transcript(s) and the completion of your application.

If you wish to mail your transcripts, the sealed, official transcripts from U.S. institutions should be sent directly to:

Application Processing Services
American University International Relations Online 
Suite 501 
7900 Harkins Road 
Lanham, MD 20706 

Students who completed degrees at institutions outside the United States are required to submit a transcript evaluation (and a translation, if applicable) in addition to original transcripts. Please contact your admissions counselor for specific information about acceptable transcript evaluation services.

Letters of Recommendation

All applicants to SIS graduate programs are required to submit two letters of recommendation to support their application. Letters of recommendation should evaluate your suitability for graduate study in international affairs.

MAIR Economics Preparation

If you are interested in applying to the MAIR program, it is highly recommended that you have previous microeconomics and macroeconomics course work prior to enrolling in the program. However, prior economics course work is not a prerequisite for admission to the program. Students who have not previously completed approved economics course work will be required to take SISG-773 Introduction to Economic Theory. Registration and sequencing of this course, if applicable, will be coordinated between the student and academic advising.

Application Fee

The application fee for SIS graduate programs is $55. The application fee is waived for:

  • Active duty members or veterans of the U.S. military
  • Active or returned Peace Corps, AmeriCorps, Teach for America, and LanguageCorps volunteers
  • First-generation college students 

If the application fee is paid off-line, the check must be sent, payable to American University, to the following on-campus address:

International Relations Online
Attn: Matthew Meekins  
School of International Service  
American University  
4400 Massachusetts Avenue, NW  
Washington, D.C. 20016 

International Applicants

International students are vital to the International Relations Online and the School of International Service’s community, and we encourage professionals outside of the United States to apply to our program. All international applicants, regardless of their country of citizenship or location, will be evaluated equally to applicants who are U.S. citizens. This applies to the Master's in International Relations and Executive Master of International Service.

Please note there are additional application requirements for international applicants.

English Language Proficiency

Applicants whose native language is not English are required to submit scores from an English language proficiency exam.

Our online international relations graduate programs accepts Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing System (IELTS), and Pearson Test of English (PTE) scores. The SIS Institution Code for TOEFL score reporting is 3313 and there is no department code.

IR Online’s minimum scores accepted are as follows:

IR Online's minimum scores accepted
Exam SIS Code Minimum Score
TOEFL Internet-based test 3313 100
TOEFL computer-based test 3313 250
TOEFL paper-based test 3313 600
IELTS n/a 7.0
PTE n/a 68

 

This requirement can be waived for applicants who hold a bachelor’s degree or higher from an accredited university whose sole language of instruction is English and is located in a country in which English is the official language. For information regarding official country languages, visit the CIA World Factbook, find the continent and country on the map, and open the “People and Society” section.

Transcript Evaluation

In addition to submitting original transcripts, applicants who earned degrees at higher education institutions outside of the United States are required to submit a transcript evaluation and a translation, if applicable. Translations must come from recognized bodies such as universities, embassies, overseas EducationUSA advising centers, or other certified translation agencies. Please contact your admissions counselor for specific information about acceptable transcript evaluation services.