Applications for admission to the PhD program for the upcoming Fall semester with or without financial aid are due by December 1. Applications for admission to any of the Master's programs for the Fall semester are due by January 1.
We are no longer accepting applications to the Master of Arts in Teaching program. Please refer to the Master of Science in Linguistics program for information regarding masters-level graduate study in the Department of Linguistics.
All applications and materials must be submitted through the Graduate School. To apply, please go to the Office of Graduate Admissions website.
Department of Linguistics Application Checklist
- Application Form
- Statement of Purpose (500 word limit)
- Writing sample (see below)
- Official Recommendations (3)
- Indication of concentration (for M.S. and Ph.D. applicants)
- Non-refundable Application Fee
- Official Transcripts (all prior institutions)
- Exam Scores (ETS test code number is 5244)
Please see the Graduate School's Application Requirements Checklist for more information.
The application form, statement of purpose, writing sample, and three recommendations should be submitted electronically as part of the application to the Graduate School. Materials should NOT be sent to the Department of Linguistics. Official transcripts and exam results should be sent directly to:
Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
Graduate Admissions, Box 571004
Attn: Credentials (Linguistics)
3520 Prospect Street, NW, Room CB-207
Washington, DC 20057-1004
If prospective students have administrative questions or general questions about the application process, they are encouraged to contact Erin Esch Pereira. Please understand that application materials sent to individual faculty members cannot be considered.
Each applicant must submit an appropriate academic or professional writing sample in English, e.g., a term paper, thesis, or professional article that demonstrates writing and analytical skills. We have no length requirement, but recommend that submissions be between 15 and 40 pages. Doctoral applicants should submit a research paper that demonstrates their ability to conduct original research in Linguistics or a closely related discipline.
Students applying to the M.S. or Ph.D. programs should indicate on their application form (and written statement of purpose) the concentration that best matches their interests (choose one only):
- Students whose interests cross concentration boundaries may also, in consultation with their faculty advisors, plan individualized courses of study. Applicants who wish to pursue this option should indicate the "General" concentration on their application, and describe how their interests correspond to those of particular faculty in their statement of purpose.
Interested PhD applicants may ask to be considered for a second concentration in the Interdisciplinary Concentration in Cognitive Science. The Interdisciplinary Concentration may be selected in addition to, but not instead of, one of the concentrations listed above. Details on this concentration can be found here. Applicants interested in this concentration should describe their research interests in Cognitive Science, and in interdisciplinary study, in their Statement of Purpose.
Notes on Ph.D. admissions:
Admissions to the doctoral program are limited and highly competitive. In their statement of purpose, doctoral applicants should outline a research program and explain their qualifications to pursue advanced research in their chosen area. It is often useful for prospective students to indicate the faculty member(s) with whom they would be interested in working.
Notes for Non-Native Speakers of English:
- All entering students who are not native speakers of English must demonstrate a satisfactory level of proficiency prior to registration, as outlined below.
GRADUATE RECORD EXAM (GRE)
Results of the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) are required for all applicants. There is no minimum required score on the GRE. Information on registering to take the GRE can be found on the Educational Testing Service website.
ENGLISH PROFICIENCY: TOEFL/IELTS
All applicants who are not native English speakers are required to demonstrate a level of proficiency in the English language sufficient to meet the admission requirement of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Proficiency can be demonstrated in the following ways:
- Bachelor's or advanced degree from an accredited institution of higher education in the United States or from a university where English is the primary language of instruction.
- Minimum score on either the TOEFL or IELTS test.
TOEFL: A minimum score of 600 (paper-based test) or 250 (computer-based tests) or 100 (iBT test) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).
IELTS: A minimum score of 7.5 from the International English Language Testing System.
Admitted applicants with a TOEFL writing score of less than 28 (iBT) or an IELTS writing score of less than 7.5 that intend to matriculate are required to take the Department of English as a Foreign Language Writing Placement Exam prior to enrolling in Fall courses. Students who score less than 5 on the written exam will be required to enroll in ENFL-111: Expository Writing for Foreign Students. More detailed information will be sent the summer prior to matriculation.
Test scores must be received by the application deadline date. Applicants should allow six to eight weeks from the test date for the reporting of scores to the institution. Applications will not be considered without GRE or TOEFL/IELTS scores.