Apply to the NIU Graduate School

Apply to the Graduate School via our online application process. Applications over our secure server require a credit card to pay the application fee ($40 domestic, $60 international).


While completing the application, you will be prompted for the email addresses of your references if you would like them to be able to upload their letter of reference electronically. If you prefer to have them sign and mail letters to the Graduate School, use the Graduate School mailing address. We will not accept unsigned letters. 

Statement of Purpose

After your application is submitted and processed, you will also be able to provide your statement of purpose electronically.

Your career goals statement (also known as the statement of purpose) should be an original essay. In other words, you must avoid copying passages from samples online or elsewhere. The Graduate School will deny admission to any applicant who plagiarizes any portion of a career goals statement. The application fee will not be refunded.


Official transcripts from a U.S. college or university must be mailed by the institution issuing them. Have them mailed to the Graduate School mailing address. Many colleges and universities can send your official transcript as an electronic document. We accept e-transcripts directly from the institution at

We recognize that students who have studied in other countries must personally send the record of their college or university studies. We require transcripts in the original language and a certified English translation. However, students from India and Pakistan must submit semester mark sheets. Additionally, if a degree has been awarded, we require the country-specific evidence typically provided to graduates: for example, an official degree-certificate or diploma in the original language and a certified English translation. Students who were educated in India or Pakistan must submit an official provisional degree certificates, if they have not graduated. All academic records received from international students must be signed and sealed by the proper university official; for students from India, that official is the principal, registrar, controller of exams or the United States-India Education Foundation.

Test Scores

Most programs require the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), though programs in the College of Business require the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) and most College of Education programs allow applicants to submit Miller Analogies Test (MAT) scores. To determine, which test, if any, your intended program requires, see the program information. The Graduate School requires an official score report received directly from the testing agency.

  • GRE: The Graduate School does not require department codes for the GRE. GRE scores may be electronically uploaded to NIU by the testing agency, if you indicate to the agency a preference for electronic delivery. View the detailed GRE score reporting schedule.
  • GMAT: If you identify NIU as a recipient of your test score, GMAT will send the score report to us electronically. Use the institution code 1559.
  • MAT: MAT scores may only be mailed to the Graduate School by the testing agency.

Additional materials, including writing samples and applications for assistantship, for example, should be sent to the department to which you wish to apply.

Transfer Students

The Graduate School does NOT have a specific application for transfer students. Students who are transferring from another graduate program may follow instructions for degree-seeking students.