FAQs

All Applicants

International Applicants

All Applicants

What criteria are used to evaluate graduate applications?

Our school evaluates each application to the graduate program using multiple criteria, including undergraduate/M.A. grades, standardized test scores, letters of recommendation, fit with our faculty, and prior work/life experience. The minimum GRE scores are 146 Verbal, 140 Quantitative, and 4.0 Writing. We do not have required minimum for grades; rather, an applicant's relative strength in all of these areas is considered. Return to top.

Do I have to take the GRE?

The GRE General Test is required for admission into our graduate program. The report of GRE scores is valid only if received directly from ETS. Have scores sent to Institution Code 1631; Department Code 4599. A complete list of materials needed for application can be found at here.

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What kind of financial assistance is available?

Students rarely can afford to attend graduate school without financial assistance. We try to offer every student whom we admit to our graduate program a teaching assistantship, provided oral English proficiency has been demonstrated. The teaching assistantship waives tuition as well as most student fees and pays a monthly salary. We also nominate especially talented students for school and university fellowships. For more information about teaching assistantships and fellowship opportunities, look here.

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Do I have to have a master's degree to apply for the doctoral program?

A master's degree in Communication or related field is required for admission into our Ph.D. program. Some schools admit students with only an undergraduate degree into their Ph.D. program. These students, however, often must overcome additional hurdles that end up slowing their degree completion. Students admitted in our doctoral program at Purdue can complete their coursework, preliminary exams, and dissertation research in four years. Students admitted straight into other doctoral programs that do not require an M.A. degree often take at least five to six years to complete their Ph.D. degree.

If I am accepted, can I transfer credit hours from another school to Purdue?

Students can transfer up to six hours from another school towards their M.A. or Ph.D. degree with approval, but only if these hours were not used to obtain an earlier degree.

If I start out in non-degree seeking status, can I transfer the hours earned in that status to a regular degree-seeking program?

Twelve credit hours with a grade of B or better may transfer towards their M.A. or Ph.D. degree with approval, presuming that they are admitted into our program and that the courses fit coherently into their eventual plan of study. Return to top.

What is the deadline for applying to the graduate program?

We begin considering applications for each fall on December 1st of the previous year.  Applications will not be considered until they are complete. Those applications completed on or before December 1st will be considered in the initial group of admissions decisions. Applicants are encouraged to submit application materials before December 1st.

NOTE: We occasionally admit graduate students to start spring semester. Students who seek teaching assistantships, however, usually begin in the fall and complete the school's teacher training program during their first semester. Only students with substantial prior teaching experience would be admitted with a teaching assistantship in the spring. Return to top.

If I apply to the graduate program in the spring and am not admitted, do I have to pay the application fee again to apply for the following fall?

Yes, the application fee is only good for one academic year. The academic year runs fall, spring, and summer. Return to top.

International Applicants

What standardized tests are international applicants required to submit from Educational Testing Services (ETS)?

TOEFL and GRE. To be considered for admission into the graduate program, non-native, English-speaking applicants must achieve a TOEFL score of 77 overall; 27 Speaking; 19 Reading; 14 Listening; and 18 Writing. The score must be documented by an official report from ETS and must be no more than two years old at the time the application credentials are reviewed in the Graduate School. Non-native.

IELTS with a score of 8 or higher will be accepted by the school. Only official TOEFL scores received directly from ETS are acceptable.

All TOEFL scores should be sent to us from ETS as follows: Institution Code 1631, Department Code 83. Return to top.

How old can my TOEFL be?

No more than two years old. The Purdue Graduate School policy regarding the TOEFL is as follows: The score must be documented by an official report from ETS and must be no more than two years old at the time that application credentials are reviewed in the Graduate School. Report of TOEFL scores is valid only if received directly from ETS. Have scores sent to Institution Code 1631; Department Code 83.

If the TOEFL score is more than two years old, the Graduate School may require that you retake the TOEFL. Return to top.

Can international students apply for teaching assistantships?

Yes. However, in order to be considered for financial support as a teaching assistant, non-native, English-speaking applicants must also achieve a score of 50 or higher on the Test of Spoken English (TSE), 27 (TOEFL) or 8 (IELTS). The score must be documented by an official report from ETS and must be no more than two years old at the time application credentials are reviewed in the Graduate School. For more information, contact Deanna Bush in the Office of Graduate Studies; (765) 494-3330. Return to top.

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