Graduate Application Process

Graduate Open House Recording (2/10/22):


Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the requirements outlined below that applicants for graduate study at

SDSU submit scores for the GRE are suspended for the Spring and Fall 2022 admissions cycles.







View and download the Graduate Applicant Guide.

  1. Apply to the University via Cal State Apply (before February 1, 2024).
    • An SDSU RED ID Number will then be assigned which allows tracking of application status online.
  2. Transcripts & Test Scores to Graduate Admissions (before March 1, 2024).
    • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended.
    • GRE (and TOEFL/IELTS for international applicants) test scores sent directly from ETS to institution 4682. GRE is not required for Fall 2021 admissions.
    • Send to:
  3. Visit Interfolio Apply Now and look for our department (Public Affairs) where you will upload the following (before March 1, 2024):
    • Upload Letters of Recommendation (two letters professors, employers, or other familiar with your abilities and accomplishments).
    • Unofficial Transcripts.
    • Current Résumé.
    • Upload Personal Statement (500 word essay about your professional and educational goals).
      • Would you consider yourself to be:
        • A pre-service student (someone without significant past public sector work experience, or with only entry-level public sector experience), or
        • An in-service student (someone who currently works in the public sector or who has significant past public sector work experience)? (Please note that your response to this question will NOT influence our decision about your admission, as we gladly accept both pre-service and in-service applicants.)
      • Describe your personal commitment to public service and social equity, using examples from your personal experience.
      • What are your professional goals? How do you believe the MPA degree will contribute to these goals?
      • Please include any additional information you think is important to consider while reviewing your application.

International Applicants

In addition to the above application process, International Applicants for admission whose education has been in a foreign country must file an application for admission, official certificates and detailed transcripts of record from each collegiate institution attended. All documents, transcripts, and test scores must be received by Graduate Admissions no later than April 1st. The CSU Mentor On-Line Application and fee must be submitted by March 1st. Effective the Fall 2013 application cycle, all transcripts, including those with international coursework, will be evaluated internally at SDSU. International applicants are required to take the TOEFL (target score of 550 paper/80 iBT) or the IELTS (score of 6.5).

All prospective international student admission inquiries should be sent to International Admissions at

For more information:


photo of Joshua Chanin

Dr. Joshua Chanin
Associate Professor
Office: AH 4120


photo of Sherry Ryan

Dr. Sherry Ryan


photo of Paul Kaplan

Dr. Paul Kaplan
Office: AH 4118