Admissions & Financial Aid

Admissions FAQs

How do I apply to the graduate program in economics?

You can find the online application form at https://grad.ncsu.edu/apply/. To start your application, choose "APPLY NOW!" and click "Create Account." Once you create your applicant account, you will see a message that acknowledges the activation of your account and provides a link for you to begin the application process. You will receive an e-mail containing the PIN and password you need in the future to return to your online application and check its status.


Do you accept paper applications?

We do not.  The Graduate School at NC State University accepts applications submitted through their online system only.  You may access the online application system here:  https://grad.ncsu.edu/apply/.


May I apply for spring admission?

No.  Both the PhD program and Master's programs admit students beginning the fall semester only. 


When is my application due?

Students applying for the doctoral program who wish to be considered for fundingmust submit a completed online application by January 1. (Masters students are not eligible for funding.) All other applications -- including masters program applications -- are due by May 1. Please note that the application must be complete, with all components of the application received by the Graduate School by the deadline date. This includes payment of the application fee and letters of recommendation. Students should periodically check the completeness of their application using the online application tool to ensure that the deadline is met.


When will I be notified about an admissions decision?

For those who submit a completed application by the January 1 deadline, a decision about admission will be communicated on or around February 15. An Open House for ALL prospective students interested in visiting the program will be held on a date in March. Final funding decisions for doctoral program applicants will be made and communicated by April 1.


Where do I send my transcripts, official test scores and letters of reference?

Unofficial transcripts should be uploaded to the online application tool. If a preliminary decision is made to offer admission, then official transcripts should be sent directly to the NC State University Graduate School at CB # 7102, Raleigh, NC 27695-7102. Official test scores should be sent directly to the Graduate School from ETS. All other supporting documentation -- including letters of reference -- should be submitted through the online application.


Is the GRE required?  May I submit GMAT scores in lieu of GRE scores?

The GRE is required of all students applying for the PhD program. The GRE is not required (though it is highly recommended) for students applying for the masters programs. We do not accept GMAT scores in lieu of the GRE.


What are the ETS codes for NC State University and the graduate economics program?

The ETS code for NCSU is 5496.  The ETS GRE code for the graduate economics program is 1801.


I only have a bachelor’s degree. May I apply for admission to the PhD program?

Yes. Please see the Admissions page for more information about program prerequisites.


Is it possible to have my application fee waived?

The graduate economics program cannot waive your application fee.  Only the NCSU Graduate School has that authority. The Graduate School generally will not waive the application fee, except in cases of documented financial need and special circumstances.  If you would like to request a fee waiver, first submit your application and indicate that you will pay the fee by check. Next, contact Dr. David Shafer, david_shafer@ncsu.edu, for instructions.  Unfortunately, international students are not eligible to receive an application fee waiver.


Does the graduate economics program offer financial support?

The Economics Graduate Program offers financial assistance to qualified doctoral students in the form of teaching assistantships, research assistantships and, rarely, fellowships. We do not offer funding to master's students. Awards are merit-based, determined by an applicant's academic history and predicted success in the program.

In most cases, students receiving an assistantship are also eligible for the Graduate Student Support Plan (GSSP). The Graduate Student Support Plan is a highly competitive support package used to attract top students to NC State. Under the Plan, students who are supported on a teaching or research assistantship or a fellowship of at least $666.67 per month and who meet the minimum registration requirement receive (at no cost to the student) health insurance and payment of tuition.


How do I apply for a research assistantship (RA) or a teaching assistantship (TA)?

During the online application process, you will be given the opportunity to indicate your interest in being considered for a research or teaching assistantship. No additional materials are required for consideration for an RA or TA.  If you are interested in departmental funding through an RA or TA, you must submit your completed application by January 1.


Does the graduate economics program offer financial support to master’s students?

We do not fund students at the master’s level.


Are international students eligible for departmental funding?

International students are eligible for assistantship awards.  


For whom is the TOEFL required?

The Economics Graduate program requires that all international applicants, regardless of citizenship, demonstrate proficiency in English at a level necessary to be successful in a graduate program at NC State. One way that international applicants may demonstrate proficiency is by providing a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of at least 80 on the Internet-based Test (iBT), with a minimum test score of 18 for each section, as follows:

Listening

18 points

Reading

18 points

Writing

18 points

Speaking

18 points - for admission to the Graduate School, RA & TA appointment as a grader

 

23 points - for TA appointment where TA has direct verbal interactions with students

 

26 points - for TA appointment where TA presents lectures in the class or laboratory

TOEFL scores should be submitted through ETS. The ETS code for NCSU is 5496.  The ETS TOEFL code for economics is 84.


Can I submit International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores instead of the TOEFL scores?

Yes, international applicants can submit International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores instead of the TOEFL. To demonstrate English proficiency, students must have an overall band score of at least 6.5, with minimum test scores for each section as follows:

Listening

6.5

Reading

6.5

Writing

6.5

Speaking

6.5 - for admission to the Graduate School, RA & TA appointment as a grader

 

7.0 - for TA appointment where TA has direct verbal interactions with students


Are any international students exempted from the TOEFL requirement?

Yes, international applicants who meet either of the following criteria are generally considered to be English language proficient and are therefore exempt from the TOEFL requirement.

1. the applicant is a citizen of a country where English is an official language and the language of instruction in higher education. A list of these countries is provided here: https://projects.ncsu.edu/grad/handbook/official_language_english.htm

2. the applicant has successfully completed at least one year of full-time study in a degree program at a four-year US college or university within the last five years.

More information about the Graduate School's English language proficiency requirement can be found here.


I have a three-year bachelors degree from a non-US institution.  Do I need a transcript evaluation?

The NCSU Graduate School will only accept three-year bachelors degrees from institutions within the Bologna Process. Students with a bachelors degree from an institution not participating in the Bologna Process must have their transcript evaluated by a transcript evaluation firm such as WES.  For more information, see the Graduate School's policy on three-year bachelors degrees