International Studies

Acceptance Criteria

Below is a list of requirements for admission into the International Studies certificate program.

Application Checklist

The following materials are required to apply:

  • A completed online application
  • Official transcript showing bachelor's degree or higher conferred from a regionally accredited institution or its foreign equivalent (CPA applicants may choose to submit additional transcripts should they seek transfer credits)
  • Select your intended certificate or enter your specialized course plan
  • A statement of purpose
  • A current resume or CV

For application deadlines, see below. Supplemental materials, with the exception of transcripts, must be uploaded to the online application. Official transcripts may be sent to our Admissions office at spsadmissions@northwestern.edu or mailed to our Chicago office. Please be sure to include the name of your intended program when addressing transcripts.

Post-baccalaureate Certificate Admissions
Northwestern University School of Professional Studies
Wieboldt Hall, Sixth floor
339 E. Chicago Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60611-3008
Phone: 312-503-2579
Fax: 312-503-4942
Email: spsadmissions@northwestern.edu

Applicants will be notified once all materials have been received and the application is complete.

Application Deadlines

Fall quarter: August 1
Winter quarter: November 1
Spring quarter: February 1
Summer quarter: May 1

Application Tips

Take care in preparing your statement of purpose, ensuring that you clearly communicate your intent in applying to the program, why you are a good fit for the program, and your educational goals and expectations from the program, especially how the completion of the certificate will contribute to your professional or personal development. The statement of purpose should be no more than two typed pages.

The SPS Admissions Office is here to help you through the application process. Submit your online application as early as possible so that we may create your application file and help you track additional materials as they arrive. Contact an admissions adviser if you have any questions along the way at 312-503-2579 or spsadmissions@northwestern.edu.

Transfer Credit Policy

Courses from an institution other than Northwestern University may not be transferred to satisfy requirements, except for students admitted to the Premedicine and Professional Health Careers programs and the CPA Preparation program.

International Applicants

SPS welcomes international students to apply to our post-baccalaureate programs. SPS does not process I-20 or DS-2019 forms for full-time student or exchange visas. Our programs are designed as part-time programs for working professionals and cannot be used to maintain legal status in the United States. Please contact the International Office with any questions.

International Transcripts

Applicants with international transcripts must request an official document-by-document evaluation by a NACES member. The equivalency of a U.S. Bachelor Degree is required.The evaluation must be prepared for Northwestern University School of Professional Studies and must arrive in our office in a sealed envelope issued by the evaluator.

English Proficiency

All applicants to SPS programs whose first language is not English must demonstrate language proficiency in one of the following three ways:

  • Provide official scores for either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) exam. The test must be taken no more than two years before the intended quarter of entry. For the TOEFL, applicants must score 600 or higher on the paper-based test, 250 or higher on the computer-based test, or 100 or higher on the internet based test. SPS's institutional code for the TOEFL is 9019. For the IELTS exam, applicants must receive a score of 7.0 or higher.
  • Provide official transcripts verifying an undergraduate degree from an accredited four-year institution or equivalent, where the language of instruction is English.
  • Provide official transcripts verifying a graduate degree from an accredited institution where the language of instruction is English.

Please contact the admissions office for more information on TOEFL, IELTS, and transcripts for international applicants.