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Future Graduate

Frequently Asked Questions

We get a number of inquiries from prospective graduate students, just like you, who are eager to learn more about Iowa State and the application process. Below you will find answers to the questions we most frequently receive. 

How do I obtain an admission application fee waiver?

  • The College of Design is not currently providing application fee vouchers. We generally expect our applicants to pay the application fee because a financial contribution at the application phase indicates a seriousness about gaining admission to our program. The expectation is that prospective students will be able to cover the cost of their graduate studies from their own financial resources for the duration of the program. We have a limited number of highly competitive assistantships available each academic year that cannot be guaranteed to anyone in advance of reviewing the full application pool. Additionally,  it is important to understand that assistantships do not provide 100% tuition and living expenses. It is important that you feel prepared to cover the full cost of your studies.

What English proficiency exams and scores do you accept?

  • International applicants whose native language is not English are required to submit English proficiency examination scores. You can find accepted exams and necessary scores here. DuoLingo is being accepted through Spring 2023. The TOEFL Home Edition is accepted. Your score should be sent electronically to our school code, 6306.

Should I contact professors with whom I would like to study?

  • No. We understand you are excited to make connections, but questions regarding our programs or how to apply should be sent to Jennifer Anderson. Individual faculty members do not make admission or assistantship decisions. Instead, admission and financial assistance is determined by a committee. You may name faculty or research interests in your statement of purpose when applying.

 How long will it take to receive my offer of admission and/or I-20?

  • We’re excited you want to join us, put getting here is a process. Please wait at least three weeks after you are contacted by our recruitment team and the DOGE for your program regarding your admission status for an official offer of admission and I-20 document (if needed) to be produced.  These documents will be sent via email to the address used to apply for admission. Admission decisions are not made until after the priority application deadline.

Do you require the GRE for admission?

  • We are happy to report that none of the graduate programs offered by the College of Design at Iowa State require the GRE. You may view admission requirements for your program of interest here.

Do you offer any PhD programs?

  • The College of Design does not have any PhD programs but we do offer terminal degrees in many of our fields.

How can I be considered for financial assistance?

  • You will automatically be considered for an assistantship or scholarship upon applying for admission if you apply by your program’s priority deadline. Applying for admission after the deadline has passed reduces the likelihood of receiving funding. Please note that our assistantships and scholarships do not cover tuition in full. Assistantships come with the benefit of in-state tuition rates but those seeking terminal degrees receive 50% tuition reduction and assistantships for non-terminal degrees provide 25% tuition reduction. 

Do you have a question we haven’t answered? Contact our recruitment team.