Are applicants required to take the GRE or GMAT for entry into the program, and if so, is there a minimum score required?
While we no longer require that applicants submit a GRE or GMAT score, they may be helpful in cases where the undergraduate academic record is not as strong as other parts of the application, the applicant has not yet completed significant coursework in microeconomics, macroeconomics, and statistics (or they completed that coursework many years ago), or when the undergraduate GPA may be hard to interpret. We recommend thinking objectively about the strengths and weaknesses of your application and asking yourself if there are areas of your application that it would be helpful to balance with an additional data point. We consider applications very holistically, and sometimes, additional data in the form of standardized test scores can help address weaknesses in other areas of an application.
Is there a minimum TOEFL/IELTS score required for entry into the program?
The TOEFL score should be a minimum internet-based score of 100. The IELTS should be a minimum score of 7.0.
Are my test scores still eligible?
GRE scores are retained for five years following the testing year (July 1 – June 30) – any test taken within this period is considered eligible. Georgetown does not accept GMAT scores from tests taken over five years ago. TOEFL scores are valid for only two years from the testing date.
I will not be able to take the GRE/GMAT/TOEFL in time for the application deadline, can I still apply?
GRE or GMAT are no longer required for admission to the GHD program, and applications submitted without these scores will be assessed based on the assessment of other required materials. Applications submitted without the required TOEFL/IELTS test scores by the deadline (January 15 for scholarship consideration, April 1 final deadline) may not be considered for review.
Do I need to take the TOEFL/IELTS exam?
If you received a BA from an accredited institution of higher education where English is the primary language of instruction then you do not have to take the TOEFL/IELTS. If you completed some coursework at a university where English is the primary language of instruction you will still need to take the TOEFL/ITS. If you transferred to a university where English is the primary language of instruction and were awarded an undergraduate degree from this institution, you may still need to take the TOEFL based on the number of years spent at the institution. If you have questions, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to clarify whether a TOEFL score is required.
I have not taken any economics or statistics courses and am not currently in school, how do I fulfill this requirement?
You can complete courses at an accredited higher education institution to fulfill this requirement. If attending a course in-person is not possible, you can complete an online course. There are many accredited higher education institutions that offer online courses in economics and statistics. If you do enroll in an online course, we highly recommend that it is through an accredited higher education institution rather than a private company or organization. Prerequisite courses must be formal classes with assignments, exams, and other assessments built in, rather than self-paced courses.
Do AP economics courses satisfy the economics requirement?
AP credit will not be counted towards the economics requirement.
Do I need to fulfill the prerequisites (introductory micro- and macro-economics, introductory statistics) by the application deadline?
The quantitative prerequisites need to be completed before the program begins in August rather than by the application deadline. Applicants will be asked how they plan to fulfill any uncompleted prerequisites during the application process, and applicants who have not yet completed the required prerequisites will not be at a disadvantage during the admissions process.
If I do not have extensive experience living, working, or studying outside of the United States, can I apply to the program?
We strongly recommend that applicants have spent time living, working, or studying abroad. However, we look at the overall application when making admissions decisions and if you demonstrate excellence in other areas, we will take this into consideration.
Do you recommend submitting a resume or CV?
Either option is suitable.
Are there requirements for who should write the letters of recommendation?
We recommend having both academic and professional recommendations. In particular, as this is a practitioner-oriented graduate program we highly recommend having at least one professional recommendation. The depth of the relationship with your recommender is far more important than their title, so we suggest soliciting recommendations from individuals who are deeply familiar with your academic and professional achievements and personal qualities.
Is an on-campus interview required?
On-campus interviews are not required. However, we encourage applicants who are able to visit campus to schedule a meeting with the Associate Director for Academic Programs. To do so, please email us at email@example.com.
Submission and Notification Process
Do I qualify for an application fee waiver?
You can receive a fee waiver for the following constituencies:
- AmeriCorps Alumni
- Congressional Bundestag Youth Exchange (CBYX) Alumni
- EducationUSA Opportunity Funds Grantees
- Foreign Fulbright Scholars
- Graduates from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)
- International Parliamentary Scholarship (IPS) Alumni
- Jesuit Volunteer Corps
- McNair Scholars
- Members of the U.S. Military
- Payne Fellows
- Pickering Fellows
- PPIA Fellows
- Rangel Fellows and Scholars
- Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCV)
- Those applying from Sub-Saharan Africa
- Teach For All (including Teach for America)
- Truman Scholars
How do I apply for an application fee waiver?
You can request a fee waiver by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Requests must be made at least a week before you plan to submit your application. In your email, please include documentation that demonstrates that you match one of the above criteria. Please also upload this documentation to your application.
For example, a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV) should submit the Peace Corps Description of Service (DOS). This can be uploaded as a PDF AFTER you submit your application. Once you submit, you will have access to an application status portal where applicants can upload additional materials, including the DOS. If you have any trouble, email your DOS to email@example.com and we can add it to your application record.
What is your policy about transcripts?
Applicants may upload unofficial transcripts into the online application. If you are admitted and decide to enroll, Georgetown University’s Office of Graduate Admissions requires applicants to provide hard copy official transcripts of all work beyond secondary school – undergraduate coursework, graduate coursework, study abroad courses, community college courses, and non-degree courses. Do not send electronic or paper copies of your transcripts before receiving an offer of admission. Upon enrollment, the transcripts must be unopened and sent directly from your prior institution(s) to Georgetown at one of the two methods indicated here. Please do not sent transcripts directly to GHD as the program is not able to review them. They are reviewed and verified by the Graduate Admissions Office, and only upon admission and enrollment.
If the transcripts are in a foreign language, they must be translated and verified. Transcripts sent from a service such as WES to Georgetown’s Office of Graduate Admissions will be considered official. Review the unofficial transcript requirements for additional details and FAQs.
Will I be notified of any missing application materials?
You are responsible for ensuring that your application is submitted with all the required components. Online applicants may access an online checklist to determine which materials have been received in support of the application. However, the Global Human Development Program and the Graduate School do not inform applicants of missing materials.
Do I need to submit all materials by the deadline?
Please note that there are two application deadlines: January 15 (for scholarship consideration) and April 1 (final deadline). All materials – including transcripts, test scores, and recommendations – should be submitted by the appropriate deadline in order to be ensure that the application is complete for review. Materials that are sent after this date may not be considered for review.
When are applicants notified about admissions decisions?
- For applications submitted by January 15, we plan to send out admissions decisions in March.
- For applications submitted by April 1, we plan to send out admissions decisions in May.
If accepted, how long do I have to make a decision?
If admitted, your admissions letter will specify a decision deadline.
Are there scholarships available for students?
GHD awards merit-based scholarships, and all applicants are automatically considered for merit-based aid; there is no separate scholarship application required, and applicants are informed of their award amount when they receive their admissions decision. If applicants are interested in being considered for merit-based aid, they must apply to the GHD program by the January 15 deadline. Scholarships are applied in the form of full or partial tuition remission, and we strongly recommend that applicants proactively research external funding options to cover the difference between the cost of tuition and the amount of merit-based aid that the applicant receives. Scholarships awarded in the first year are renewable at the same amount for the second year contingent on the recipient meeting certain academic standards.
Do international students qualify for scholarships?
Program Structure and Curriculum
At what times will classes be offered?
All core courses meet from 11:00 AM – 1:30 PM, and electives are offered throughout the day and evening.
Will students be able to enroll in the program part-time?
Students admitted to the program will be required to enroll in the program full-time. We do not recommend that students continue their pre-GHD jobs during the program, given the academic rigor, co-curricular programming, and networking opportunities that characterize the program.
How long does it take to complete the program?
The program is a two-year, full-time program. Students enroll in 12 credits per semester.
Are language classes offered as part of the program?
Students can take language courses while enrolled in the program. The Graduate School will cover the cost of tuition for up to one language class per semester (with some conditions on the course level and grading options) taken at Georgetown University.
Do credits from language classes count toward the GHD degree?
Credits from language classes do not count toward the GHD degree and are not included in students’ graduate transcripts. The language classes covered by the Graduate School are at the 350 level and below and, as such, will be recorded on an undergraduate transcript.
What kind of quantitative skills do I need for the program’s coursework?
Coursework in introductory micro-economics, macro-economics, and statistics should prepare students for GHD’s core course on Quantitative Assessment (GHDP 503). Quantitative coursework assigned in other courses will be designed in line with the skills and knowledge gained in GHDP 503.
Do you offer dual degree programs with other schools?
GHD does not currently offer dual degree programs with other schools.
How many electives do I have to take?
There are 21 credits (seven three-credit courses) allocated for electives. At least 9 of these credits should be in a student’s designated area of specialization.
When do I need to declare a specialization?
Students can choose a specialization as early as the end of the first semester or at the end of the second semester, but are not required to declare a specialization or certificate until their second year.
Do I take classes outside of GHD?
Students can take electives offered by GHD, other programs within The School of Foreign Service, other schools at Georgetown University ( for example, the Graduate Program in Public Policy, Georgetown University School of Law, Georgetown University School of Medicine), and universities that are in the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metro Area.
Will I be able to work full-time while enrolled in the program?
The demands of the program will preclude full-time work. In addition to a rigorous course load, the program requires an overseas summer work assignment, and encourages internships during the year. Nevertheless, courses are given during the day and in the evening, and therefore it is feasible to work part-time while doing the program. We do not recommend students take on work commitments more than 15 hours/week.
Living and Working in DC
What is the overall cost of the program?
An estimate of direct and indirect living expenses for the year can be found on the Office of Student Financial Services website.
Is there housing for graduate students on campus?
Georgetown University does not provide campus-owned housing for graduate students. Students live off-campus in the Washington, DC area. For advice on finding off-campus housing, please visit Office of Residential Living‘s website.