All the information you need to apply to our doctoral program.
The application deadline for the mass communications program is Jan. 15. All students are admitted for the fall term, which begins in August.
Current Syracuse University students should apply to the program using the Graduate Program Application. As of Fall 2021, there is no longer a separate internal application process.
Our program is currently not available in online or part-time formats.
Applicants should be prepared to dedicate at least three years to full-time, on-campus study.
Please note: admission to the doctoral program cannot be deferred. Individuals must reapply, though many of the same materials (for example, GRE scores) may be reused.
Admissions decisions are made by committee
Individual faculty members do not make admissions decisions and cannot guarantee admission for any applicant. All applicants are carefully evaluated for:
- Research interests as they relate to faculty interests
- Academic preparation for research
- Communication skills, both oral and written
- Intellectual ability, as reflected in standardized tests and performance in coursework
- Readiness for the Ph.D., reflected through research and personal statements
You must identify at least two Newhouse faculty members with whom your research interests align in order to be seriously considered for the program.
All students are fully funded
This puts a premium on providing us evidence of your interests and experiences with research and is also why the entrance to the Newhouse School Ph.D. program is selective.
After the application deadline, the doctoral committee, composed of several faculty members and current students, will go through all applications, conduct interviews (usually via Zoom), and make final decisions.
Once a student is admitted, a faculty advisor will be assigned to the student to guide her, his, or their first year of study in the program.
Statement of Research Interests (1,500-word limit)
Your statement of research interests must provide the following information in up to 1,500 words:
- Your long-term career goals
- Your research interests
- Your past research experience or training, if any
- Your reason for choosing doctoral study at the Newhouse School, particularly in terms of your research interests vis-à-vis those of our faculty.
- A list of at least two faculty members whom you would like to work with or learn from, and why. Your application will be evaluated in part on the strength of your connection with our faculty.
Three letters of recommendation
All three letters of recommendation should be provided by individuals who can comment on your research skills and preparation.
- GRE General Exam (optional)
- Entry to our program is competitive. GRE scores are optional, though recommended.
- TOEFLscores (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, you do not need to provide a TOEFL score. Please also know the doctoral admissions committee welcomes submission of previous TOEFL or IELTS scores to provide additional information.
- 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 or not you need to submit your scores, and other common questions for international applicants to Syracuse University, please visit the International Student FAQ.
Your writing sample can be a publication of any kind: working papers, project reports, a chapter of your thesis, even course term papers. The sample should show your conceptualization ability, communication skills and presentation skills. All writing samples must be solo-authored.
As part of our holistic admissions process, all applicants must answer four video questions via the Kira platform. Each applicant will be given a question and 90 seconds to two minutes to respond.