The application process can be filled with seemingly daunting and intimidating pieces. We are here to help you with tips and suggestions in order for you to put together your best application.
Searching for Graduate Programs and Funding
Researching graduate programs can be a challenging process. In this six-part video series, learn more from Dr. Jenna Lenhardt and her colleagues at Education USA in Spain as you plan your research process: Searching for Graduate Programs and Funding
The online graduate application is your main portal to submit all of your required application documents. The system is built to help you submit the unique requirements based on the program you are applying. There is a $70 application fee per program application submission.
Most programs will have additional questions such as research interests (Ph.D. tracks), learning community preference (Ed.D), personal experience and motivation for a particular program, etc. These questions are tailored to each program and aid the admissions committee when determining program fit.
The online application will request additional forms to provide evidence of your residency status. If accepted, your graduate school letter of acceptance will state your residency status. Documentation required varies greatly based on your domicile in Virginia. Please review the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) website for details on in-state residency laws and guidance.
We require three (3) reference letters from individuals who can speak to your academic or professional abilities; professors/instructors, supervisors, or co-workers. Ask references to connect your unique strengths to your future program and give direction as to what you would like them to highlight, knowing what they have worked with you on in the past.
If many years have passed since your last academic program, identifying a colleague, mentor, or supervisor who has observed how you may have taken a new concept and applied or presented it creatively. It could be a colleague who has done a large project with you where you have presented at a professional conference. Contact us if you have questions about the academic requirement.
Note: We do not accept references from family, friends or clergy unless applicant is employed by a religious organization.
The statement of intent and personal statement are names used interchangeably for the same application requirement. This statement describes your motivations for pursuing a graduate program at VCU and the School of Education, and how this particular program aligns with your future career goals. This 2-3 page, double-spaced, well-written, clear and concise statement outlines what inspired you to apply to the graduate program of interest and where you hope to take your career with the knowledge and skills learned.
If you are applying to a doctorate program, please also include a description of your research interests as well as identified faculty in the School of Education or VCU who you believe will align with those.
Please note: Certain programs have specific prompts and guidance that can be found in the online application. Please review the online application before developing your statement of intent. If no specific prompts are outlined, please follow the general outline above.
Ed.D. applicants: Please describe how your motivations for pursuing a doctor of education degree in leadership aligns with your experience and career goals based on three lenses: leadership for equity, leadership for accountability, and leadership for learning environments.
- This is a program focusing on leadership. What are your reasons for applying to this program and what are the goals you will strive to achieve?
- What evidence do you have you are an effective educator?
- Describe a situation when you were asked to solve a problem. What did you do? What was the outcome? What did you learn?
- There are numerous reform movements in education. Choose one you are either for or against and explain why.
M.Ed. in Counselor Education applicants:
Your personal statement should include a description of the experiences that led you to pursue this degree as well as your career goals. The statement should also include your perceived aptitude for forming effective and culturally relevant interpersonal relationships with clients. Culture is defined broadly and includes ability/disability status, ethnicity, race, religion/spirituality, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital/partnership status, and socioeconomic status. Please comment on your experience with diverse populations in your personal statement. Also comment on how you exhibit the Professional Performance Standards upon which you will be evaluated in the program, which are listed in this handbook.
The School of Education is committed to applied learning. We welcome students from a variety of academic and professional backgrounds. In order to understand the wealth of knowledge each applicant will bring to their future program, we require a resume or professional CV. These documents should include, at minimum, the following:
- Colleges or universities attended
- Educational degrees held, including major/minor
- Work history in chronological order, beginning with your current position
- Leadership experiences
- Professional and/or community service involvement
- Awards and honors
Some programs require specific years of teaching as a licensed instructor or leadership experience. Please use your resume to highlight your past professional experience in the areas required for your application.
Request that all undergraduate and graduate transcripts from previous study be submitted to the admissions office. Official transcripts must be submitted from the previous college/institution directly to VCU. If you have sealed envelopes of your transcripts, we can accept them as long as the seal has not been broken.
Sealed envelopes may be sent to:
VCU Graduate Admissions Office, Box 843051, 408 W. Franklin Street, Richmond, VA 23284-3051
Official electronic transcripts from a student’s home institution can be sent directly to: email@example.com
Please review the testing resource page for suggestions after reviewing which exam is required for your program. The school code for admissions testing is 5570.
Many of our graduate programs have a required interview process integrated into the review process. You will be contacted directly by your program administrative staff or faculty coordinator near the application deadline to schedule an interview if required for your future program. Please make sure we have your most updated email and phone number in order to respond to requests for the interview.
Once all application packet materials are received, the application can then be sent for review. If the application deadline has been extended for a program, the timeline will be from the final deadline posted. If you have any questions on the status if your application, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
A newly accepted student can defer their admission for up to one (1) year. For example, a student accepted for Spring 2019 can defer that admission as far as Spring 2020. If it is more than one (1) year, the student must reapply.
Please review our Teacher Preparation resource page for guidance on deadlines and requirements for our Teacher Preparation program.
Please use this M.T. Application Resource [PDF] to review the various requirements for admission to teacher preparation and the Master of Teaching program at the VCU School of Education.