General Graduate Application Requirements

Applicants to both the M.A. and Ph.D. programs in American Studies must be in possession of a B.A. and submit, as part of their application, their university or college transcripts, three letters of recommendation, an up-to 6,000-word sample of their academic or professional writing, and an up-to 1,500-word statement of personal goals describing how they might be advanced by study in American Studies. GRE* scores received within up to five years should also be submitted. Foreign students must also submit TOEFL scores sufficient to meet University standards.

Your writing sample should be a piece of writing that stands up well on its own and demonstrates your ability to do analytical writing based on research. Do not send a chapter of your MA thesis that makes sense only if you have read the rest of your thesis. Your writing sample will be read by a multidisciplinary admissions committee, so be broad in your approach. An ideal writing sample will make an original argument at the very start and will appeal to inquiring readers from the different academic fields that contribute to American Studies.

Your statement of personal goals should demonstrate why you are the right student for our particular American Studies program and explain why we are right for you. Your statement should also display a knowledge of our faculty, their interests, and the characteristics of our program.

* GRE scores are NOT required for the Public Humanities, M.A.


Applications for the Ph.D. Program should be received by January 16, 2018.

Applications for the Master of Arts Program are accepted on a rolling basis until July 1, 2018.


The Graduate Program can provide financial support to several students in the Ph.D. program. Requests for financial assistance should be indicated on the Rutgers University Graduate Application form.

Application instructions and forms are accessible at:

Information about the Rutgers University-Newark Graduate School is available at: