Online Application for Degree-Seeking Students - NIU - The Graduate School

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Online Application Instructions for Degree-Seeking Students

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Thank you for your interest in the Graduate School at Northern Illinois University!

Before you begin this application, please familiarize yourself with the calendar of program deadlines.

Online application notes:

- The application system requires a username and password combination, you will be asked to create these before you begin. The system will save your information as you progress through the application.

The Graduate application utilizes basic scripting to allow for dynamic content as you apply. If you are using a browser or computer that has scripting disabled you may not be able to complete this application. Please be sure to enable scripting in your browser of choice to complete this application.

To complete the application you will be asked to provide the following information: 

  • Personal Information (Social Security Number, Date of Birth, Address, Citizenship Information, etc.)
  • College/ University Information (School Name, Dates of Attendance, Degrees received, etc.)
  • Names of two (minimum) PROFESSIONAL references who will submit letters of recommendation (references will be able to upload their letters electronically if their email address is provided)
  • Payment Information (Credit Card or other acceptable payment method)

A non-refundable application fee ($40 domestic, $60 international) will be required to process this application (Visa, MasterCard). Once you have successfully submitted the application, a confirmation page will appear that will provide you with a summary of your application information, as well as other important information. Please print copy of this page for your records. All supporting documents necessary to process your application must be sent to:

The Graduate School
Northern Illinois University
Adams Hall
DeKalb, IL 60115-2864

Documents required to be submitted for Degree Seeking Students:

  • Application fee ($40 / $60)
  • Official test score reports
  • Official college transcript(s)
  • Letter of recommendation (PROFESSIONAL)
  • Statement of Purpose / Goals Statement

International (nonimmigrant) students must ALSO submit:

  • Official English translations of academic records from all college and universities attended
  • All test scores, including TOEFL or IELTS
  • Documentation of financial resources

Important information regarding Goal Statements and Letter of Reference:

NIU 's record system allows DEGREE-SEEKING applicants to upload their Goal Statement and allows recommenders to upload their respective letter of reference if their email address is provided by the applicant.

To utilize the electronic letter of reference process, applicants MUST provide the email address of their recommenders DURING the application process. Once submitted, NIU will send an automatic email with instructions to the specified recommenders. Please note: These emails are sometimes caught by spam and junkmail filters, the student should follow up with his /her recommenders if the document does not arrive in a timely manner. Applicants can track their incoming materials via the student record system, MYNIU. (Letter of Recommendation tips for applicants)

Applicants are required to provide a Goals Statement. This statement will not be uploaded until AFTER the application is completed and the student logs into the MYNIU student record information system. All students will receive an automated email within 2 days of application that will provide instructions on how to obtain a username and password for MYNIU. Once logged in, the student can monitor his/her application status and use the link provided to upload a Goals Statement in Word or PDF format.

NOTE: 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.

Document Retention

Please note that all documents submitted to Northern Illinois University for admission purposes became the property of the university. Documents will not be released to students nor will they be forwarded to other educational institutions or agencies.

Annual Security Report

NIU provides information regarding campus security, personal and fire safety, including topics such as: crime prevention, emergency response procedures and crime reporting policies, in addition to crime and fire statistics for the most recent three calendar years. The Annual Security Report containing security and safety information is available at or by contacting the University Police and Public Safety Department at 815-753-9628 to receive a hard copy. The Annual Fire Safety Report is available at or by contacting the Environmental Health & Safety Department at 815-753-0404 to receive a hard copy.

Contact Us

If you have any questions please feel free to contact us. The Graduate School can be reached by phone at (815)753-0395 or by e-mail at (U.S.A) (International Applicants)


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