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MPAff FAQs

Q. How can I learn more about the LBJ School and/or arrange a campus visit?

Answer

We invite prospective students to learn more about the LBJ School by making a visit to our campus. The best time to visit is during one of the Information Session events for prospective students. Fall Information Session events will be offered during the Fall semester October 21 and November 18. Please see this link to register: www.utexas.edu/lbj/prospective/openhouse/rsvp

Students unable to attend a formal information session are encouraged to attend one of our small-group information sessions, held most Friday mornings at 10:30. To schedule to attend one of these meetings, please email the LBJ Admissions Office.

If you cannot attend on a Friday, please contact us and we will do our best to schedule an individual time to meet with you.  We encourage students to plan their visits during times of the year when classes are in session and students are on campus. Interaction with current students and faculty can provide a wealth of information for prospective students entering the graduate school selection process.  Please keep in mind that, due to staffing constraints, we cannot provide as comprehensive an experience for individual visitors.

To schedule a campus-wide tour, please refer to this link:  Campus tours

Q. How can I check the status of my online application? How long does it take for the application materials I have submitted to show up as received on my application status page? What office should I contact if my application status page does not accurately reflect all the materials I have submitted?

Answer

You can check your application status at any time on your status check page. Please note: This link will not become active to you until you have submitted your application and paid your application fee.  If you submit application materials during the 4 weeks prior to the application deadline you should anticipate a lag time of approximately a week between the time your documents are received/uploaded and the time your status page is updated. You can avoid the last minute rush by applying and submitting your documents early.  

Q. If I am undecided about whether I want to pursue the Master of Public Affairs (MPAff) degree or the Master of Global Policy Studies (MGPS) degree, may I apply to both? How will I know which degree program is right for me?

Answer

You may only apply to one degree program and you must make that decision when you submit your electronic application for admission. There is a significant difference between the curriculum and focus of the MPAff and the MGPS degree programs. Applicants should thoroughly read the descriptions of the two programs, which are available on the LBJ School prospective student webpages, to make their decision. If you are still unsure about which program you should choose, you are strongly encouraged to discuss your educational and career objectives in relationship with your degree choice with our faculty advisers, Dr. Patrick Wong (MPAff program; patwong@austin.utexas.edu) or Dr. Catherine Weaver (MGPS program; ceweaver@austin.utexas.edu).

Q. Who is eligible to apply to the LBJ School's master's programs?

Answer

Any person who has or will have a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university is eligible to apply for admission to either master's program. 

Q. After being admitted, are there any enrollment prerequisites that I should know about?

Answer

Admitted MPAff students who have not completed formal undergraduate coursework in calculus and statistics are required to complete those courses (with a grade of C or better) prior to enrolling or pass validation exams given at the LBJ School during orientation. Two separate exams are offered, one on calculus and the other on statistics. Students have to take only the one for which they have not taken an undergraduate course. For more information on quantitative sequence visit: http://www.utexas.edu/lbj/students/quantitativesequence.

Q. How do I apply for admission?

Answer

The application process includes applying for admission through the ApplyTexas application.  For detailed instructions about admissions, visit our admissions webpage

Q. What is the application deadline?

Answer

The application deadline for fall admission is January 5. Your online application and all related materials must be received or postmarked on or before that date. Early application is advised.

Q. How much does it cost to attend the LBJ School?

Answer

Please refer to the information on this page for the latest tuition and fee rates:  Tuition Dollars and Cents.  

This figures do not include books, optional fees or living expenses. Students in dual degrees
pay a flat rate that is an average of both degrees.  For Business and Law dual degree students, the tuition costs will be significantly higher.  Dual degree tuition rates apply to students during every semester in which they are enrolled in a dual degree program.

Q. How many applications to the master's programs does the LBJ School receive, and what size is the entering class?

Answer

The LBJ School typically receives approximately 700 applications for its two master's programs and enrolls an entering class of approximately 150 students.

Q. What proportion of LBJ students graduate on time?

Answer

The most recent data indicate that 89% of students graduate on time (within 2 years for the regular degree programs, 3 years for all dual degree programs except LBJ/Law which requires 4 years). 95% of students graduate within 150% of the normal expected time to degree, and 96% do so within 200% of the normal time to degree.

Q. Does the LBJ School have published GRE/GPA/TOEFL minimums for admission?

Answer

The LBJ School takes a holistic approach to the application review process. Each applicant’s file is reviewed individually with equal consideration given to the quantitative and qualitative aspects of the student’s records. The process is competitive and applicants are encouraged to give special consideration to the preparation of their essay, which gives the admissions committee personal insight into their unique qualifications. 
Applicants admitted to the entering class of 2013 had the following quantitative averages:
GPA: 3.54
GRE Verbal: 84th percentile
GRE Quantitative: 61st percentile
GRE Writing: 4.5

Successful international applicants should have a combined TOEFL score of 100 or above and a TOEFL speaking score of 26 or above.

Q. Are any students admitted for the spring semester?

Answer

Only part-time MPAff students are invited to apply for spring admission. The deadline for spring applicants is October 1. 

Q. May I substitute the GMAT or LSAT for the GRE? What is your GRE code?

Answer

All applicants to the LBJ School must submit GRE scores, no exceptions.  The University of Texas institution code for submitting your score is 6882.

Q. When should I take the GRE? How can I be sure you receive my GRE scores on time?

Answer

It takes approximately two weeks for the computer-based GRE scores to arrive at the University's Graduate and International Admissions Center. To meet the January 5 deadline, you should take the computer-based GRE before December 1 if at all possible.

Q. Can I submit GRE and/or TOEFL scores that are several years old?

Answer

GRE scores can be no more than five years old at the time of submission. TOEFL scores can be no more than two years old at the time of submission.  If your scores do not meet this required timeline, you must retest and submit current scores.

Q.  Do you accept electronic letters of recommendation?

Answer

Your three recommendation letters should be sent electronically by your recommenders. When completing your online application, you will be given the opportunity to submit your recommenders' names and email addresses. Upon submission of your application, your recommenders will be sent a link to complete an electronic recommendation letter or to upload a MS Word or PDF document. You must choose to waive your right to access these letters in order to use this system. As a last alternative, letters may be emailed directly from your recommenders to the LBJ School Admissions Coordinator. This method is not recommended as it may cause significant delays in processing your application.

Q. Will I get reviewed for admission if my application is incomplete?

Answer

Only compete files are reviewed for admission. Please make arrangements with the Admissions Coordinator if you think an item or document will be late. 

Q. When will I receive notification of the admissions decision?

Answer

Decisions can be viewed immediately after they are posted in early March by visiting the MyStatus website. Applicants will receive an email when an official decision has been entered on their application. The LBJ School sends acceptance letters via email soon thereafter. Admitted students may request a hard copy of their acceptance letters.

Q. Is there an application for LBJ School scholarships or fellowships?

Answer

All full-time LBJ School applicants are automatically reviewed on a competitive basis for merit-based fellowships during the admissions review process. No additional application is required. Those receiving competitive fellowships will be notified of their award in their official LBJ School admissions letter. Fellowship recipients and non-fellowship recipients are strongly encouraged to explore their eligibility for need-based financial assistance.

Q. Are international students eligible for merit-based fellowships an/or need-based financial aid?

Answer

International students are eligible and will be automatically reviewed for merit-based fellowships during the admissions process. Typically, international students are not eligible for need-based federal assistance. See the international student website for more information www.utexas.edu/international/isss/students/financialaid.

Q. How do U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents apply for need-based financial aid?

Answer

If you are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident and wish to apply for for need-based aid, you should fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Contact the UT Austin Office of Student Financial Aid office for more information. 

Q. What is your school's FAFSA code? What are the priority deadlines?

Answer

The UT Austin FAFSA code is 003658. The priority deadline for applying for need-based aid for fall admission is March 31.

Q.  If my recommenders have not completed their recommendation letters by the deadline or my test scores have not been received by the Jan. 5 deadline will my application still be reviewed?

Answer

We traditionally give student 7-10 days after the deadline for pending supplemental documents to be received.   Files that are incomplete as of January 15 will be considered incomplete and will probably not be reviewed.