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Master of Public Affairs Program Admissions

Deadlines and Decision Dates:  

Fall 2015:  January 5, 2015
Fall 2015 Washington Center (DC Program):  February 2, 2015
Spring 2015:  October 1, 2014 (Part-time only)  Note: Spring applicants are not eligible for fellowship consideration.  The spring admission/part-time option is not available to students applying for the Washington Program.

Decision Date: around mid-March

Incomplete applications will not be considered. Early application is advised.

Before you begin the application process, please view the following site:

Degree Programs:

MPAff Degree Application Requirements:

Washington Center (DC Program) Additional Application Requirements:

  • When you are asked to select a major, remember to choose Public Affairs DC (MPAff) from the drop-down menu
  • Dual degree, part-time and specialization options are not available for the DC Program
  • At least one letter of recommendation must be from a professional supervisor familiar with your work experience
  • Please address the following question within your statement of purpose: How does policy work in Washington, DC fit into your career goals, and what in your background has prepared you to work in the DC environment?
  • Applicants who meet the acceptance criteria may be selected for an interview with members of the admissions committee. These interviews are conducted by invitation only.

Dual Degree Application Requirements:

  • The dual degree option gives students the opportunity to combine the MPAff degree with a second approved graduate degree in a complementary field. Most of the LBJ dual degrees are designed to be completed in 3 years of full-time study.  
  • LBJ School application requirements same as for regular MPAff program.
  • Dual degree students should choose the appropriate dual degree code on the ApplyTexas application.  Only one ApplyTexas application is required - please make sure you select the dual degree application rather than submitting a separate ApplyTexas application for each program.
  • Dual degree applications are reviewed separately by each department.  You must complete all application requirements for each degree program.
  • Different schools within the University may have different application deadlines.  You must meet the deadline for each particular school.


In order to enroll in the required Quantitative Sequence, admitted students must have completed the following:

  • One semester of college level statistics:  If you haven't yet taken statistics I, your requirement can be fulfilled by 1) AP test credit listed on transcript, 2) Completion of equivalent class at community college, 3) Successful completion of PA 325 during summer before enrollment or 4) Passing a validation exam in the subject during orientation
  • One semester of college level calculus:  If you haven't yet taken calculus I, your requirements can be fulfilled  by 1) AP test credit listed on transcript, 2) Completion of equivalent class at community college, 3) Successful completion of PA 325 during summer before enrollment or 4) Passing a validation exam in the subject during orientation
  • More information on prerequisites and the Quantitative Sequence
  • Please note that you may apply and be admitted without having completed requirements.

The Texas Common Application and Fee:  

  • The Texas Common Application is made available online at ApplyTexas in early September for fall admission and early April for spring admission. 
  • You do not need to wait until all your materials are complete to submit the ApplyTexas application.  
  • Once you submit your application and pay your fee, you will receive an email from GIAC which will direct you to the following links to manage the remainder of your application:  1) My Status 2) Supplemental Documents Upload
  • Application fee for U.S. Residents - $65, for international applicants - $90
  • An additional $10 transcript-processing fee is charged to all former UT Austin students
  • Applications without fees will not be processed

Required Test Scores:

  • GRE:  The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is required of all applicants.  NO exceptions are made to this requirement.  For information on the GRE: Educational Testing Service. The University of Texas code is 6882.  GRE score results must be fewer than five years old at the time of submission to be considered valid.  GRE scores that are in the older version, but still within the 5 year window are still accepted.
  • DUAL DEGREE APPLICANT TEST REQUIREMENTS:  Students applying to the dual degree program in law are required to take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT).  Students applying to the dual degree program in business are required to take the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT).  
  • TOEFL:  International students whose native language is not English are required to submit the Test of English as a Second Language (TOEFL).  TOEFL exemption/waiver information can be found here:  The LBJ School requires a minimum total score of 100, with a minimum score of 26 on the speaking portion.  TOEFL scores must be fewer than two years old at the time of score/application submission.  International applicants may be contacted to schedule a telephone interview as part of the admissions process, at the discretion and expense of the LBJ School.  Information about the TOEFL is available at  The LBJ School does not accept the IELTS in place of the TOEFL.
  • Detailed information about required test scores can be found here:

Letters of Recommendation:

  • Three recommendation letters are required. It is recommended that at least one letter be from an academic source.  
  • When completing the ApplyTexas application, you will be asked to provide the names and email addresses of your 3 recommenders. Once you submit your application and pay your fee, your recommenders will be sent an email directing them to a website to submit their letters through an electronic system.
  • Additional recommenders may be added by visiting the Application Status Check page. Click on the link that says "Manage your recommendation requests", which is located under all of your recommenders names.
  • If you failed to enter your recommenders' names and email addresses on the online application, you must do so by sending an email with that information to
  • Although faculty recommendations are preferred, applicants who have been out of school for five years or more may use work references. 
  • Your references should provide a narrative that addresses your potential for academic success at the LBJ School and your future in public policy.

Current resume or CV:

  • After submitting your online application, you will be be able to upload supporting documents, including your resume at this link.
  • Documents can not be deleted once they are submitted, so make sure the documents are in their final versions. The system will only accept documents that are in PDF format. 

Statement of Purpose Essay:

  • Your Statement of Purpose/Essay should be uploaded to your file online using the same method described above for the resume/CV. 
  • There are no specific, strict formatting requirements (font, length, spacing, etc.), but please try to keep it under the equivalent of three double-spaced pages in normal 12-point font.
  • Please address these three topics in a single essay:  1)What are the most important things the LBJ School Admissions Committee should know about you (e.g. personal history and background, unique experiences and perspectives)? In other words, what led you to your interest in pursuing this degree? 2) What are your professional and career goals?  Ten years from now, what type of work do you hope to be doing in the field of public policy?  3) How would a degree from The LBJ School help you achieve your professional goals?


Applicants who are currently enrolled in another graduate program at UT-Austin or who have been enrolled in a graduate program at UT-Austin in the past must apply using the Change of Major form. Once your form has been submitted to GIAC, you can go to this link to upload your resume, statement of purpose and any required transcripts.  Recommenders should email their letters directly to the Graduate Admissions Coordinator at This DOES NOT apply to current or former UT-Austin undergraduates, who should follow the regular online application and document upload method.