Pursuing a graduate education can be consuming. Navigating a new country? Well, that can be a greater challenge. International Students Services in the Center for International Affairs provides resources for new students to make your move to Cleveland seamless. See our Application FAQs for more application information.
Submitting Transcripts & Degree Certification
Transcripts or degree certifications in languages other than English, must be accompanied by an English translation. If accepted, the School of Graduate Studies will need official copies of both the English and original language version submitted, not just the English version. Scanned copies sent by email or PDF are not considered official; official copies must be in a sealed envelope from the university or come via encrypted email directly from the university.
All transcripts, degree certifications and translations will become the property of the School of Graduate Studies. Do not send official transcripts until you have been formally accepted.
On occasion, applicants may need to have their transcripts evaluated and we suggest using World Education Services (WES). Common reasons to have your transcripts evaluated include degree or GPA equivalency, English translation or authentication of the documents. Their Course-by-Course Evaluation costs around $160. Their highly trained experts will work with you to create an evaluation that you can later submit to jobs or colleges.
Language Scores (TOEFL, IELTS and PTE)
Minimum scores (all of these scores are valid for 2 years from the date of testing):
- Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) internet-based: 90 (80 if applying to a Course Focused Engineering program). Some programs require higher scores, see note below. (We are currently accepting the TOEFL Home Edition due to Covid.)
- Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) paper-based: 577
- International English Language Testing System (IELTS): 7.0 (6.5 if applying to a Course Focused Engineering program).
- Pearson Test of English (PTE-Academic): 61
* Note: The following departments require higher language scores: Art History, Art History & Museum Studies, Biomedical Engineering, Chemistry Entrepreneurship, Master of Engineering and Management (MEM), and Pathology. Those higher scores are 100 on the TOEFL, 7.0 on the IELTS, and 68 on the PTE Academic.
* The School of Graduate Studies does not accept the TOEFL MyBest Scores. Applicants must achieve a minimum of 90 on one exam date; exams will not be superscored.
* The language test requirement will be waived if you have completed a bachelors or masters degree from an institution where English is the primary language of instruction. See FAQ section below for more information. There are no language score waivers for MEM, Organizational Behavior or Pathology.
Academic English Proficiency Program (AEP)
The AEP Program is designed for promising international graduate students to receive English language development needed to raise language scores on the TOEFL or IELTS tests exams.
Please note that students cannot sign up directly for this program. Your application for admission is submitted online and reviewed by the department. If they decide to proceed with the admit but the TOEFL or IELTS score is lower than the minimum standards, then the AEP program can be an option to proceed with provisional admission.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Below is a list of frequently asked questions by our international students. Find additional FAQs about the admissions process.
During the application process, applicants should use their legal name in the First Name and Last Name section. However, there is also room to enter a Preferred Name, as well as a Previous/Maiden Name. This helps us to better match incoming transcripts or documents sent to us. If accepted to the university, you can officially change your Preferred Name in the Student Information System to reflect differently on class rosters.
No, the School of Graduate Studies does not offer conditional admission if you do not have the passing language scores outlined above. However, you can still apply to your degree program and continue to attempt to acquire a passing score. If you do pass a language exam during the application process, please inform us via firstname.lastname@example.org and we will verify your score.
Possibly. There are a few ways to qualify for a waiver of the language score requirement:
- If you graduated with a bachelors or higher from a U.S. institution where English was the main method of instruction, the score requirement will be waived upon receipt of the transcripts with degree verification.
- If you graduated from a university outside of the U.S. that the instruction was in English, the score requirement will be waived upon receipt of the transcripts with degree verification. You must be able to provide a transcript stating that English was the method of instruction or a letter from the school.
- If your home country's primary spoken language is English.
- If you are a U.S. permanent resident.
* Please note there is no waiver for MEM, the PhD in Organizational Behavior or Pathology.
You do not have to take any extra steps to receive the language score waiver. The application will ask if your degree was taught primarily in English; if English was in fact the main method of instruction, you can answer Yes. Only if you are accepted, you will be required to submit your official transcripts stating that the degree was taught in English or provide a letter from your school. You will be unable to register for courses unless we have one of those documents.
No, The School of Graduate Studies does not accept the TOEFL MyBest Scores. Applicants must achieve the required minimum score on one exam date; exams will not be superscored.
Congratulations! You will need to Accept or Decline our offer of admission by logging back into the online application system - this sets the process in motion with the Center for International Affairs and International Student Services to begin working on your visa and I-20 paperwork. Note that the second page of your admissions offer letter contains step by step information on starting your visa process in Terra Dotta.
International Student Services will process all paperwork related to your travel and stay in the U.S. You will hear from ISS after you receive your official acceptance letter (via email) from the School of Graduate Studies and Accept our offer of admission. Note that the second page of your admissions offer letter contains step by step information on starting your visa process in Terra Dotta. ISS will not start your visa unless you have accepted the offer from Graduate Studies in the online application system. ISS will communicate with students via Terra Dotta for processing your paperwork.