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PhD Checklist

About Our Admissions Process

The deadline to apply for the Ph.D. in Information Science and Technology is January 3.

Current Syracuse University students need to complete the internal application. Contact Bridget Crary ( to start the Ph.D. application process.

After the application deadline, the doctoral committee, composed of several faculty members and several current students, will go through all applications, conduct interviews (either in person or by phone), and make final decisions. 

Once a student is admitted, a faculty advisor will be assigned to the student to guide his or her first year of study in the program.


Ph.D. Application Materials Overview

A complete application should include the items below. Incomplete applications cannot be processed. It is your responsibility to make sure that complete application packages are received before the deadline. To verify the status of your application, please contact Bridget Crary at

All application materials are required unless otherwise noted.

  1. Graduate Program Application
  2. $75 non-refundable application fee
  3. Academic credentials
  4. Statement of Research Interests (1500 word limit)
  5. Three (3) letters of recommendation
  6. Required exam scores:
    • GRE General Exam
    • TOEFL (international students only)
  7. Writing sample
  8. Additional application submission instructions

1. Complete the Graduate Program Application

You can apply to the program using the Graduate Program Application.

You will receive an email from Syracuse University when you application has been received and processed.

Current Syracuse University students need to complete the internal application. Contact Bridget Crary ( to start the Ph.D. application process.


2. $75 Non-refundable Application Fee

The non-refundable application fee is $75.

Please include a check or money order payable to Syracuse University. Do not send cash.

Post-9/11 veterans of the armed forces may have their admissions fee waived upon verification by Veterans Resource Center staff. Identify yourself as a Post-9/11 Veteran while completing the online admissions application and contact the Veterans Resource Center ( for further instructions.


3. Academic Credentials

One (1) copy of records of all previous postsecondary education.

If you have a master's degree in any field, you may be able to waive 30 credits of the overall Ph.D. program course requirements.

Contact the Registrar’s Office of each higher educational institution that you attended and have one copy of your transcript(s) sent to the Syracuse University Enrollment Management Processing Center. Address and submission instructions are below.

You do not need to send transcripts from secondary schools as part of this application.

We can consider your application with unofficial transcripts, but we recommend that you send official transcripts. If you choose to submit an unofficial transcript, all offers of admission from Syracuse University are conditional pending receipt of official academic credentials showing that a U.S. bachelor’s degree (or equivalent) has been conferred upon you.

Failure to submit official degree-bearing credentials may result in revocation of an offer of admission, or dismissal from the graduate program if admission has already been granted.


4. Statement of Research Interests (1500 word limit)

Your statement of research interests must provide the following information in up to 1500 words:

  • Your long term career goals once you obtain your Ph.D. degree
  • Your research interest
  • Your past research experience or training, if any
  • Your reason to study at the Syracuse University iSchool. In particular, where you see the fit between your research interests and the expertise of the faculty.
  • A list of any faculty members you would like to work with or learn from and why. We expect you to make a connection of your interest(s) to at least two iSchool faculty members, and you will be evaluated on the strength of your connection(s).


5. Three (3) letters of recommendation

All three letters of recommendation should be provided by individuals who can comment on your research skills and preparation.


6. Exam Scores

  • GRE General Exam
    • Entry to our program is competitive. GRE scores are not required, but are strongly recommended.
    • Successful PhD applicants typically have the following scores:
      • Verbal >= 160
      • Quantitative >= 148
      • Writing >=4
    • These scores are only guidelines. We consider all application materials before making a final decision. If you submit an application with lower scores than described above, it does not mean your application will be automatically rejected. The same goes for the opposite: if you submit an application with higher scores that described above, it does not mean your application will be automatically accepted.
    • We will accept GMAT scores in place of the GRE, but GRE is preferred.


  • TOEFL scores (required for international applications)
    • If you are not a native English speaker and do not have a degree from a U.S. institution, you are required to take the TOEFL exam.
    • Successful applicants typically have a TOEFL score of 105 or above.
    • If you have completed an advanced degree taught at an accredited U.S. educational institution, it is possible to waive the TOEFL score requirement. Email to confirm if you are eligible to waive the TOEFL/IELTS requirement.
    • International applicants whose native language is English, or, who are citizens of English-speaking countries are not required to submit TOEFL scores.
    • For more information on TOEFL scores, whether you need to submit your scores, and other common questions for international applicants to Syracuse University, please visit the International Student FAQ.


7. Writing sample

Your writing sample can be a publication of any kind: working papers, project reports, even course term papers. The sample should show your conceptualization ability, communication skills, and presentation skills.


8. Additional application submission instructions

How to submit your application:

Electronically using the Graduate Program Application

We strongly encourage that all application materials and credentials be submitted electronically using the Graduate Program Application listed in step 1.

You will receive an email confirmation from Syracuse University when all your application materials have been received.

By mail

Any materials that cannot be submitted electronically can be mailed.

Any letters of recommendation that you are unable to submit electronically must be submitted in sealed envelopes, on which the recommender has signed across the seal.

For all other materials, you must include your first name, last name and SU I.D., and mail the materials in a sealed envelope to:

Enrollment Management Processing Center
Syracuse University
Graduate Admissions Processing
P.O. Box 35060
Syracuse New York 13235-5060

If you are sending materials using a package delivery company (i.e. FedEx, UPS, DHL), use this address:

Enrollment Management Processing Center
Syracuse University
Graduate Admissions Processing
716 E. Washington St., Suite 200
Syracuse New York 13210-1572

To verify the status of your application, please contact Bridget Crary at

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