Admission Information

SPS uses a holistic admissions approach for graduate programs that allows for the academic and professional achievements of each applicant to be considered. Please review the application requirements below. Accelerated MS in Data Science students start the program in the fall quarter and progress through the program in a cohort.

If you have specific questions about the admissions process, contact the Admission Advising team.



Check Your Eligibility

To pursue a graduate degree at the School of Professional Studies, an applicant must hold a U.S. bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution or foreign equivalent.

If you are unsure if you are eligible to apply or have questions about the admission process, contact the Admission Advising team.


Application Deadline

December 1

The deadline to submit an application to the accelerated program is December 1. Applicants who submit their completed online application form, non-refundable application fee, statement of purpose, resume, and writing sample may receive a grace period after the deadline for external materials, such as letters of recommendations, official transcripts, and course-by-course evaluations, if they submit by this deadline.

We strongly encourage applicants with international credentials to begin the application process as early as possible. The course-by-course evaluation can take several weeks or even months to arrive at our office due to extra processing time.


How to Apply

All applicants are required to submit an online application. Applicants can check the status of their application at any time by logging into the online Self Service Center portal. A complete application to the School of Professional Studies includes the following components:

Online Application

Use the online application to submit your contact information, upload your statement of purpose and resume, and any additional supporting documentation. 

Application Fee

A $75 non-refundable application fee is required. Pay online with a credit card.

Statement of Purpose

Applicants are required to submit a 300 to 550 word statement of purpose outlining how the degree program will help them meet their academic and professional goals. The statement of purpose can be uploaded via the online application.


Applicants are required to submit a resume. The resume can be uploaded via the online application.

Letters of Recommendation

The online application will require that an applicant enter the names and email addresses for two recommenders. Reference requests are sent to your recommenders via email once you complete that portion of the application.


Official Transcripts

Please list all colleges and universities attended. Official transcripts must arrive in our office in the original sealed envelope issued by the institution. Northwestern University School of Professional Studies accepts electronic transcripts from U.S. institutions via secure electronic transcript providers. Please allow 10 to 15 business days for any materials to be received. Consult with your institution to see if they are part of a secure e-delivery network.

Official electronic transcripts must be requested from the college or university and sent directly to

Official mailed transcripts can be sent to*:

Attn:(program of interest)
Northwestern University School of Professional Studies
Wieboldt Hall, Sixth Floor
339 East Chicago Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60611-3008

* Please review the notice on the Admission page

International Transcripts

Official transcripts from institutions outside of the U.S. are required to be evaluated by a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES). Applicants are required to have an official course-by-course evaluation completed. The course-by-course evaluation will serve as the official transcript for studies completed outside of the U.S. 

Northwestern University School of Professional Studies will only accept official course-by-course evaluations if the evaluation explicitly indicates that the individual’s course of study is the U.S. equivalent of a bachelor’s degree (or master’s degree).

Specifically, if the degree requirement for admission is a conferred bachelor’s degree, the course-by-course evaluation must read equivalent to a U.S. bachelor’s degree. If the degree requirement for admission is a conferred master’s degree, the course-by-course evaluation must read equivalent to a U.S. master’s degree. Additionally, an applicant that has earned a U.S. master’s degree and has a bachelor’s degree from outside of the U.S. must still submit an official course by course evaluation that indicates that the applicant has the equivalent to a U.S. bachelor’s degree.

Applicants are also required to ensure that the language of instruction is included in the course-by-course evaluation.

NACES approved evaluation companies, ECE and Educational Perspectives, are highly recommended by Northwestern University School of Professional Studies. 

Additional instructions for international applicants are listed below.


International Applicants

SPS welcomes international applicants to apply and, if admitted, enroll in our graduate degree programs. Students that are admitted to the accelerated MS in Data Science program are eligible to apply and receive a student visa. 

Please contact the International Office with any questions at (847) 491-5613.

English Proficiency

Proof of English proficiency is a School of Professional Studies admission requirement for international applicants. 

International applicants can provide proof of English Proficiency by submitting one of the following:

  • Provide an official transcript demonstrating a Bachelor’s degree or higher from an accredited U.S. college or university.
  • Provide an official course-by-course evaluation where the language of instruction is indicated as English.
  • Provide official scores for either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) exam and achieved the required score (official scores must be provided)
    • TOEFL – 100 or higher on the iBT (internet based TOEFL)
      • TOEFL Institution Code: 9019
    • IELTS – 7.0 or higher on the Academic IELTS

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