Below are questions frequently asked by prospective students.
Will my life and employment experience be a factor for admissions?
Applications to Northeastern’s School of Journalism are judged on a number of factors. Although an applicant’s academic history is important, the School is also looking for evidence of commitment to journalism. Previous professional experience will be taken into consideration, as well as interesting life experiences and perspectives. In short, we want our students to be curious, engaged and eager to enter our profession with a sense of purpose.
What are the academic requirements for admissions?
We consider past academic history, as well as your score on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). Applicants must have completed a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution.
A GPA of at least a B (3.0) is preferred. All applicants must take the GRE. Applicants are expected to score at least 153 in the verbal section of the GRE, though the 160+ range is preferred. Subject GRE tests are not required. GRE applications are available from www.gre.org. Northeastern’s GRE institution code is 3682. Scores will be sent directly to the Graduate School of the College of Arts, Media and Design by the ETS.
What is the difference between the Professional Concentration and the Media Innovation concentration?
They are very different programs. In general, the Media Innovation Concentration is designed for those news media professionals who have experience in the news business and want to advance their careers. The Professional concentration is designed for individuals with little or no professional news experience who are looking to enter the field of journalism.
How important is my personal statement?
An informative, smartly written, well-rounded, and interesting personal statement is critical to your application. It is your first writing sample. It should speak to who you are, what you plan to study and why you want to attend our program. It should be one to two pages in length, single spaced. Please indicate whether you are applying to the Professional Concentration or the Media Innovation Concentration on your essay.
What factors do you consider in the letters of recommendation?
Students must submit three letters of recommendation. Ideally, applicants request letters from a mix of professional, academic and personal contacts. You should choose people who can speak to your character, drive, work ethic and commitment to the field of journalism.
Do you accept transfer credits from other institutions?
The School of Journalism graduate program accepts a maximum of nine semester hours of credit obtained at another institution that might be applied to toward your degree provided that these credits:
- are no more than five years old, and
- consist of work taken at the graduate level for graduate credit, and
- have been earned at an accredited institution in the United States, and
- carry grades of B (3.000) or better, and
- have not been used toward any other degree or certificate.
Transfer credit grades do not count toward a GPA at Northeastern University.
Where should I have my official transcript sent?
Have your official transcript sent to: Moki Smith, Coordinator, Graduate Student Services; College of Arts, Media and Design; 360 Huntington Avenue; 122 Meserve Hall, Boston, MA 02115
Should I include samples of my work?
Applicants who have been published in newspapers, magazines, newsletters, books, etc. can include samples of their work. Copied clips or CDs of PDFs are all acceptable. Students who have worked in radio or television should feel free to include tapes with their materials. Samples will not be returned.
What if I don’t have published samples?
Some students enter the program because they are changing careers and might not have published work. In this case, we will look at the writing in your personal statement, your letters of recommendation, your GPA and your GRE score. Because you have little news writing experience, you are encouraged to take the Intensive Reporting seminar offered prior to the fall semester.
What are the requirements for applying for departmental financial assistance?
The School of Journalism offers full or partial funding to a small number of qualified students. Students interested in financial assistance should note this on their applications. The official deadline for departmental financial assistance is early February.
For more information about federal financial aid visit the Financial Aid Website.
Is housing available for graduate students?
Northeastern University offers limited housing for full-time graduate students. For more information on housing, please visit the Housing & Residential Life webpage.
What are the application deadlines?
Applications received by Feb. 1 are given priority by the selection committee. However, applications from domestic applicants are accepted through August 1, and applications from international students by May 1. Typically, applicants are informed of the admission decision within one month of receipt of the application and supporting materials.
I am an international applicant. Are there any additional requirements?
Northeastern’s School of Journalism has a rich history of attracting students from around the globe. International students go through the regular application process as well as a few additional requirements:
Test of English as a Foreign Language: Applicants whose first language is not English must submit proof of English proficiency. Satisfactory evidence includes (1) a minimum score of 100 (Internet based test) or 250 (computer-based test) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL); (2) a minimum score of 7.0 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS); (3) proof of a minimum of four years of study culminating in the receipt of a degree from an undergraduate institution where the medium of instruction is English.
A completed I-20 Request Form must be submitted at least 16 weeks before enrollment. Students cannot receive visa application forms – required to register for courses- unless they file the e-form, certifying that they have financial support to cover all educational and living expenses.
International applicants already in the United States must also submit copies of a current SEVIS I-20 or DS-2019 form, current visa, I-94 card (front and back), the first page of a valid foreign passport, and an ISSI Transfer-in Form. If you do not require an I-20 or DS-2019, please complete the Data Form.