Graduate Degree Student Requirements

Admission to the Kent Campus as a graduate student is selective. We take a holistic approach to the application review process and consider a variety of factors in the admissions decision. Our graduate programs carefully review each applicant based on multiple factors.


Admissions Criteria & Requirements

To apply to Kent State University's Kent Campus as a graduate student you should have:

  • A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university.

  • A total undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.000 on a 4.000 point scale. Some programs may require a higher minimum undergraduate or graduate GPA.

  • International applicants must meet other minimum requirements such as English proficiency and degree equivalencies. Please refer to the International Graduate Student Requirements.

  • Departmental requirements: Meet program-specific requirements. Please see below for more information.

Application Materials

Graduate admission is selective. Kent State uses the following common materials to determine admission decisions.

Common Departmental Requirements

Please refer to the Graduate Programs webpage for program-specific information regarding admissions requirements, which could include:

  • Goal or personal statement
  • Writing sample
  • Portfolio
  • Documented preparatory coursework or licensure
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Audition tapes, portfolios, slides, essays, writing samples, etc. as required by your department

You will be able to submit your documents through the application portal. Please consult the Graduate Programs listing to determine which of the following materials are required by your department.

Transcript Policy

At the time of application, Kent State University applicants can submit a personal copy of an official transcript from each college or university where a degree was/will be conferred. Applicants who attended college outside of the United States may be required to submit additional transcripts from non-conferring post-secondary schools. 

If an offer of admission is made, applicants who supplied personal copies of transcripts must request that their degree-conferring schools send official transcripts directly to Kent State University’s admissions office. Those who attended schools outside of the United States may take their official transcripts to the Office of Global Education, where the transcripts can be submitted as part of the student record or copied and returned to the student.  

Students who have not submitted an official transcript showing degree conferral by the second week of their first term will receive a hold on their student account. This hold will prevent further registration until an official transcript is received.

Official Transcript Policy

  1. Copies of OFFICIAL transcripts may be uploaded at the time of application.
  2. Upload a copy of both the front and back of the transcript.
  3. Transcripts from student portals will not be accepted.
  4. If your transcript covers more than one degree, upload the transcripts to each degree.
  5. Kent State University students do not need to submit transcripts for work completed at Kent State University. However, applicants must still submit transcripts for all post-secondary work completed elsewhere that is not already transcribed on your KSU transcript.
  6. Applicants offered admission to Kent State University will be required to submit official transcripts issued directly from each college or university attended where a degree was conferred.
  7. If official transcripts are not received by the second week of the student’s first semester of attendance, a registration hold will be placed on the student’s record. The student will not be able to adjust his or her course schedule or register for additional semesters until all transcripts are received.
  8. Transcripts from each institution that awarded a degree must show that a degree has been obtained.
  9. Any significant discrepancies found between student-provided copies of unofficial transcripts and official transcripts will be grounds for dismissal.

International Credentials

For students with international credentials, please submit a complete academic record for each institution attended. A complete record includes transcripts, detailed mark sheets, degree certificates, graduation certificates and diplomas awarded. Transcripts and mark sheets must include all attempted courses, even courses failed. These documents must be submitted in the original language along with a certified English translation. Copies of official documents may be submitted for international credentials for admission review.

Transcript Examples

Below are some examples of transcripts that are acceptable and not acceptable at the time of application.

Not Acceptable:

Acceptable at Time of Application:

  • PDF icon Official (mailed) transcript.pdf
    • An official transcript is issued from the originating institution and sent directly to Kent State University. Kent State will only accept transcripts that arrive in a sealed envelope bearing institutional validation (university seal, watermark, registrar signature). If you submit a copy of an official transcript, we will still need a formal transcript sent directly from your institution(s) if/when you are admitted.
  • PDF icon Official (electronic) transcript.pdf
    • Official electronic transcripts are acceptable if sent directly from your college or university.
  • PDF icon Work in Progress Transcript.pdf 
    • Kent State University accepts applications and offers admission to students who have not yet completed the appropriate bachelor's or master's degree in anticipation that the degree will be conferred prior to the start of their graduate study. The offer of admission is considered "provisional" until official transcripts with a conferred degree are received by Kent State University directly from the issuing institution. If they are not received by the second week of the first semester of attendance, a registration hold will be placed and the student's course schedule cannot be adjusted until official transcripts have been received.

Mailing address for transcripts: 

Graduate Admissions
P.O. Box 5190
Kent, Ohio 44242

Email address for electronic transcripts:

If you have any questions or need further assistance, please contact Graduate Admissions at or 330-672-2661. 

Test Scores

Official test score reports of the GRE, GMAT or MAT may or may not be required by your department. Please check with your program.

Additional Information

Application Review Process

Applications are managed by both Kent State University’s centralized admissions office and the Office of Global Education. Once your application is complete, the admissions office will conduct a review of the application file. During the review, you may be asked to provide additional information (e.g., diplomas, transcripts, English translations of international transcripts/mark sheets, test scores if minimum GPA requirement has not been met). Once the admissions office has determined that your application is complete, it will forward it to the department for review. 

Please note: An application is complete when all application requirements for the program have been submitted. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have submitted all required materials by the program’s deadline. Please monitor your application checklist to identify outstanding requirements.  

Application deadlines vary by program. Please see your program’s catalog entry for specific dates. 

Admission Decision

Your intended program will conduct an in-depth review of your application and supplemental materials to evaluate your eligibility for admission. The department’s admission decision will be forwarded to Kent State University’s admissions office to be processed, which will communicate the final decision. Admitted students may receive additional communications from the program, as well.  

Evaluation Timeline

Each program has different application review procedures and schedules. Some programs wait until the posted application deadline to review all completed applications at one time. The program may rank each applicant against the entire pool of applicants. Other programs review completed applications on a case-by-case basis as soon as they arrive and make admission decisions immediately. Please refer to your program's website, catalog entry, or Graduate Coordinator for more information about the evaluation timeline. 

Conditional Admission

Applicants who do not meet the minimum university and/or program requirements may be considered for conditional admission. Admission in such cases will depend heavily on other indices of the student’s ability to handle graduate-level work. These might include strong performance on standardized tests, GPA in the major and/or other experiences that are clearly indicative of strong academic ability.

Deferred Admission

Admitted students are expected to enroll in and attend courses during the term for which they were admitted. As a courtesy, the admissions office allows admitted students to defer the term of enrollment to another term within one calendar year from the term of admission. Initial enrollment beyond one year is not permitted. To defer enrollment to a later term, students can request that change through the application portal. If you have any questions, domestic applications should contact the admissions office at and international applicants should contact the Office of Global Education at

Students who have not enrolled in or attended courses within one calendar year of admission will need to submit a new application and pay a new application fee if they wish to attend courses.


Application Fee

Is the application fee refundable? 

No, application fees are non-refundable.

Are there application fee waivers?

No, we do not grant fee waivers. Your application will not be processed or reviewed without the receipt of the appropriate application fee for your application type.

Can I pay the application fee with a check instead of a credit card? 

Yes, you may pay the application fee with an electronic check. When prompted to choose a payment method, select "Pay Online with Electronic Check (U.S. banks only)." Please note that your completed application will be held for six days while the check clears. The application will not be processed for an admission decision until the check clears.

How much does it cost to apply?

The following application fees are charged for every application you submit except for sanctioned dual degree programs. When you apply, you will be prompted to pay the correct amount for your application type.

Domestic Charges
Degree TypeFee
Master's, Ed.S., Ph.D.$45
Non-degree (incl. certificates)$15
Grad Alum non-degree$15
Online programsVaries
International Charges
Degree TypeFee
All degree types$70

Application Policies & Procedures

I need to re-enroll and was directed to contact your office. Can you explain the re-enrollment process?

If you are returning from an approved leave of absence from the university and wish to return to your former program of study, complete the Application for Graduate Re-enrollment form found under Leave of Absence and Re-enrollment in the Forms Library. Please obtain all required signatures before submitting the form.

For additional information on the university’s enrollment policy, visit our Policies and Processes webpage.

How do I apply as a transfer student?

Transfer students are subject to the same requirements as degree-seeking applicants in that you must complete an application and submit all required documents. Questions concerning the transfer of credits should be directed to your academic department’s graduate coordinator.

I was admitted into my program, however, I didn’t attend as planned. May I start this semester instead?

If you have been admitted into a program of study, you have one year in which to begin. If you’d like to request a term (semester start) change, please use the Graduate Admission Offer form in your application portal to request an entry term change.

I need help logging back in to my application. Can you tell me my login credentials?

The graduate application is provided by our application partner, Slate. For security purposes, the admissions office is not able to recover your login credentials. Return to the application portal to log in to your account. Your username is the email address you used to establish your initial account. To recover your password, select "Forgot your password?"

How do I apply for admission into a graduate program?

An application for graduate study is completed by applying online. Once an application has been submitted, you will receive an email confirmation. In addition to the email confirmation, you can check your status at anytime through the application portal.

When all required application materials have been received, a Graduate Evaluation (GVAL) will be completed by admissions and your file will be sent to the appropriate academic department for review.

Application Status

How will I receive my decision letter?

Decision letters will be posted in your application portal. When a decision has been made you will receive an email notification that your decision letter is available in your portal. Click on "View Decision Letter" to view your admission decision. KSU student credentials (e.g., email, student identification number) will be emailed to admitted students a couple of days after the admission decision has been made.

How long does it take for the college to review my application and make a decision?

Each college has different processes and timelines for reviewing applications. Once your application has been sent to the appropriate academic unit for review, you will be notified with a final decision

My application is incomplete, but I have submitted all required materials.

Please monitor the status of your application via your application portal and note any requirements that say "Needed." If you have submitted all documents (e.g., goal statement, resume, portfolio) and your status remains incomplete, please note the status of your letters of recommendation and your transcripts. You can change recommenders or send email reminders from your application portal. Please also note the status of your transcripts. When reviewing transcripts, our office may identify transfer credits that were not disclosed at the time of application. You will receive an email notification if additional transcripts are required or additional information is needed.

How do I check the status of my application?

You can check the status of your application at any time by visiting the application portal.

Changing Application Information after Submission

How do I change my intended program of study?

If you have not been admitted yet, you may change your program of study's concentration by emailing your request to To change the degree or program to which you are applying, you must submit a new application. 

If you have already been admitted to a program, you should contact the graduate coordinator of the proposed program to determine whether you should submit a Change in Program of Study form or complete a new application. If a Change in Program of Study form should be submitted, it can be found under "Degree Changes" in the Forms Library.

How do I make changes to my application after it has been submitted?

Once your application has been submitted you cannot make any changes. If you need to change your email address, please return to your application portal and follow the instructions for changing your email. If you would like to change your area of concentration, delivery mode of your program (i.e., online, in-person), address or phone number, you can send a request via email to

Standardized Tests

How long are my GRE scores valid?

GRE scores are valid for five years.

Can I substitute any other test for the GRE?

The GRE is mandatory for all programs in which it’s required. However, some programs accept more than one type of test score for admission. If your program accepts more than one type of test score, it will be stated in the University Catalog.

Can GRE scores be waived? If so, what is the procedure?

In rare circumstances, GRE scores may be waived only if it’s stated in the University Catalog. If you believe you qualify, contact your program’s department regarding the waiver requirements. If approved, your department will send the waiver request to our office.

We do not accept waiver requests directly from applicants, they must come from the department.

What is the minimum GRE score needed to apply?

There is not a minimum GRE scored needed to apply, however, please check with the department of your intended program of study to see if they have a minimum GRE score required for admission as these requirements vary by program.

What is Kent State University’s ETS code for the GMAT?

The GMAT code is N4Q.

What is Kent State University’s ETS code for the GRE?

The GRE code is 1367. If you are requesting your scores be sent to specific schools, please use 1367 for Kent State University.

Application Materials

What is the "Questions in Anticipation of Licensure" form and where can I find it?

If applicable, the Questions in Anticipation of Licensure form will be listed on your application checklist as the Verification of Moral Character form. You should submit the form with only a signature. Do not answer the questions at this time. You will answer the questions when you apply for licensure. Graduate admissions only needs a signature acknowledging that you’ve reviewed the form at this time. The form can be found in the Forms Library listed under Graduate Application Forms.

What is the difference between a Goal Statement and a PRSE?

These are two separate and very different documents.

A goal statement is both a description and justification of your program of interest. A goal statement must be submitted for all degree-seeking applicants. View suggestions on how to write an effective goal statement.

The PRSE (Personal Explanation Statement) is required by any applicant who answered "Yes" to the application questions related to past or pending criminal offenses/charges, or a non-academic college or university dismissal. This applicant must submit a written statement explaining the personal history of the event(s).

Can I submit my application and supporting materials at different times?

Yes, you may submit part or all of your application and supporting materials at any time. However, you are responsible for ensuring that all necessary documents are submitted prior to your program’s application deadline. The department will not review your application until all required materials are received and processed by graduate admissions.

What is the deadline for submitting my application and other materials?

Application deadlines vary by program. The University Catalog includes the links to all academic program websites, where you can find specific information about application deadlines.

Can I use the same documents on my new application that I used on a previous application?

Most departments require letters of recommendation and goal statements that reflect an interest in the department in which you are currently applying. In rare cases, the department may accept past documents, but you would need their approval first.

How should I submit my application materials?

Upload all application materials (e.g., goal statement, copies of transcripts, resume) through your online application portal (link to Official transcripts should be sent directly from the originating institution to Kent State University through a third-party electronic service (e.g., Parchment, National Student Clearinghouse) or by emailing them to If an institution only mails transcripts, please send them to:

Kent State University Graduate Admissions
Schwartz Center
P.O. Box 5190
Kent, OH 44242

Letters of Recommendation

My recommender hasn’t submitted their recommendation. What should I do?

Reach out to your recommender to follow up on the request. If you are unsuccessful in your attempt, or are concerned that they will not submit a letter on your behalf or before your program’s deadline, it may be in your best interest to ask someone else to submit a letter for you.

May I submit more than the required number of recommendations?

Yes, we will accept and attach up to five letters.

Do recommendation forms have to be submitted with all letters of reference?

It is preferred, but we accept letters without the forms. It is important that your letter writers include your full name and student ID number on the letters they submit.

How do recommenders submit a letter of recommendation?

Letter writers may submit recommendation forms and/or letters through the automated email they receive when your application is submitted, or through one of these methods:

Graduate Admissions
Kent State University
P.O. Box 5190
Kent, OH 44242


How can I see if a recommendation was submitted on my behalf?

By checking the status of your application at any time by visiting the application portal.

How many letters of recommendation are required?

Most programs require three letters, although some programs require two. Your application checklist will reflect the number of recommendations required for the program in which you are applying. The letters should be completed by people who are familiar with your educational goals, and professional and/or academic ability.


Will you accept an electronic transcript from my college or university?

Yes, Admissions will accept electronic transcripts if they are sent directly from the originating institution to Kent State University through a third-party electronic service (e.g., Parchment, National Student Clearinghouse) or by emailing them to If an institution only mails transcripts, please send them to:

Graduate Admissions
Kent State University
P.O. Box 5190
Kent, OH 44242

If I attended Kent State University previously, do I have to send you my KSU transcripts?

No, graduate admissions will obtain copies of your Kent State University transcripts.

If I applied last year, do I have to send my transcripts again?

No, not unless you’ve attended another institution since your transcripts were last submitted.

Do I have to request transcripts from my previous institution(s)?

You will need to provide official transcripts from all institutions where you have completed a degree, with the exception of Kent State University transcripts. Applicants who attended undergraduate study outside of the United States should provide copies of all official transcripts at the time of application regardless of whether or not a degree was received.

If you have already had transcripts sent to Kent State after 2008 for a previous application, please contact our office at or 330-627-2661. If we still have them on file and there have been no changes since they were last submitted, they will be applicable.

Please make certain you include all aliases, maiden and previous names on your application so that official transcripts can be promptly matched to your application.

International Admissions

I am an international applicant; who should I contact with questions?

You can contact international admissions in the Office of Global Education at 330-672-7980 or International applications are received and processed by Kent State’s Office of Global Education.

For additional information on the international student application process, view international admissions' frequently asked questions.

How are materials for an international application submitted?

You may submit your application materials through your application portal, by emailing them to or mailing them to:

Kent State University Office of Global Education
625 Loop Road
106 Van Campen Hall
Kent, OH 44242

Am I considered an international student?

If you are not a permanent resident or citizen of the United States, you are classified as an international student.


If I plan to live in Ohio before enrolling, can I pay in-state tuition?

Residency for purposes of in-state vs. out-of-state tuition is determined at the time of your application. If you will not be enrolling right away and want to learn more about changing your residency status, please refer to the Financial, Billing and Enrollment Center's Ohio Residency Status.

Who should I contact if I have trouble with registration?

Contact the department in which you have been admitted.

I can’t register for a class because there’s a prerequisite, what are the next steps?

Contact the department in which you have been admitted.

I’ve been admitted; when should I register?

Your admission letter will explain how you can log in to FlashLine (your portal for registration). Degree, certificate and other credentialed students should not register until they have confirmed course requirements with their academic program’s coordinator or graduate faculty advisor.

Registration for future terms can be found on the Financial, Billing and Enrollment Center’s calendar and deadlines section.

Campus Tours and Advising

I want to make an appointment to speak with an advisor. Who should I contact? 

Contact the department in which you are applying or have been admitted.


Your Next Steps

As one of Ohio’s top universities, Kent State offers graduate programs in a variety of areas through competitive admission. Please review the steps of the application process below.