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Participants gather for a group photo at the ODU Graduate Program in International Studies’ Annual Graduate Research Conference. College of Arts and Letters

Graduate Program In International StudiesFuture Students


  • A dynamic & diverse student body
  • Distinguished faculty
  • Research & teaching in a range of disciplines
  • A flexible program with concentrations that allow students to focus their studies
  • The international ties of a major port city, Norfolk
  • Major government facilities including the Joint Forces Staff College, the NATO's Allied Command Transformation , the NASA Langley Research Center and Naval Station Norfolk
  • Close proximity to Virginia Beach
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GPIS is proud of its dynamic and diverse student body. Our students come from diverse backgrounds. Many already have an M.A. (if entering a Doctoral program) or a B.A. (if entering an M.A. program), but students' educational backgrounds are rich and varied. GPIS students have held previous degrees in the fields of Economics; History; Political Science; Linguistics; Geography; Sociology; Business Management; Foreign Languages; Communications; Literature; Creative Writing; and many more! GPIS students also come to ODU from within the U.S. as well as from all over the world. Many of our current students and alumni are doing exciting things in the Academic, Private, Government and Non-Profit sectors to name a few. No matter from where or what background you come to GPIS, you can be assured that you will leave with a world-class education and opportunities to work in many different fields.

Guidelines For Admission

M.A. or Ph.D. GPIS Programs

  1. Baccalaureate degree or equivalent
  2. Grade Point Average (GPA)/Graduate Record Examination (GRE): GPA in one's undergraduate major and in courses related to international, global, or transnational issues should be somewhat higher
    • M.A. 3.00 cumulative GPA; a GRE total score of 146 Quantitative and 156 Verbal (1100 composite Old Score)
    • Ph.D. 3.00 cumulative GPA; GRE total score of 148 Quantitative and 160 Verbal (1200 composite Old Score)
  3. Individuals whose native language is not English: TOEFL score of 570 (88 ibt)

The Admissions Committee strongly recommends prior international experience (residence, study, or work) and foreign language training for all M.A. and Ph.D. applicants. Evidence of substantial international and foreign language background is highly desirable for applicants.

The GPIS Admissions Committee takes into account the overall qualifications of individual applicants and reserves the right, in some cases, to admit students who do not fully meet all these requirements.

Admission Requirements M.A. or Ph.D. GPIS Programs

  1. Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores for the verbal, quantitative, and analytic writing sections
  2. Official transcripts of all undergraduate or prior graduate course work
  3. Letters of recommendation addressing the candidate's capacity to undertake graduate work on international global issues
  4. Two-page, double-spaced essay of not more than 500 words describing interest in and capacity for advanced training in global/transnational issues
  5. One copy of a "best" example of writing or research (a paper submitted to a seminar, a publication or report or other comparable example).


Applications for fall semester admission to the M.A. and Ph.D. programs, and for financial assistance, must be submitted to the Office of Graduate Admissions no later than February 15 for MA and January 15 for Ph.D..

Applications for spring semester admission to the M.A. program (only) are also accepted on a limited basis and must be submitted to the Office of Graduate Admissions by October 15.

Transfer Credit

Any prior graduate course work taken at Old Dominion University (e.g., in non-degree status) or at another institution can be counted toward the M.A. or Ph.D. degree only in accordance with the provisions governing transfer of credit and the director's approval.

Please contact the Old Dominion University Office of Admissions for more information.

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