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International Development Studies

Elliott School of International Affairs

Master of Arts (M.A.)
Location(s): Foggy Bottom - Main Campus

Program Overview

Steps from the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, the Elliott School engages the Washington and global policy communities in meaningful discussions of development policy.  The International Development Studies (IDS) graduate program is the fastest-growing program in the Elliott School of International Affairs.  Under the leadership of former U.S. Agency for International Development official Professor Sean Roberts, this program trains the next generation of development practitioners, exposing them to the latest research, best practices from the field, and experiential learning opportunities. 

The M.A. in International Development Studies provides a broad understanding and appreciation of current development theories and issues, as well as the processes involved in formulating policies and implementing development projects.  Students prepare for professional careers in the field of international development through interdisciplinary coursework that includes the study of economics, research methods, policy analysis, and management. In their final year, IDS students complete capstone projects, working with Elliott School faculty mentors in partnership with aid organizations around the world.

 

Admission Requirements

Admission deadline:

Fall – February 1 (To be considered for fellowship support, applications must be submitted by January 7. )

Standardized test scores:

GRE general test (institutional code 5246)

Recommendations required:

Three (3) letters of recommendations, preferably from professors. Applicants who have been out of school for several years may send recommendations from supervisors or employers.

Prior academic records:

Transcripts required from all colleges and universities attended, whether or not credit was earned, the program was completed, or the credit appears as transfer credit on another transcript. Transcripts must be forwarded in their original sealed envelopes.

If academic records are in a language other than English, a certified English language translation must be provided; translations alone will not be accepted.

Statement of purpose:
  

In an essay of approximately 500 words, state your purpose in undertaking graduate study at the Elliott School of International Affairs. As part of your statement of purpose, describe your academic and research interests, career objectives, and how a degree from the Elliott School will enable you to achieve your goals. Please be specific.

Additional requirements:

A resumé or curriculum vitae is required. High intermediate proficiency of a modern foreign language and course background in economics (micro- and macroeconomics) are also required. Course(s) must be successfully completed through an accredited institution. In some cases, a student may be admitted who has not fulfilled the economics requirement; in which case, the student is required to take course(s) at an accredited college/university prior to enrollment at the Elliott School, or by taking the three-week review course(s) of micro- and macroeconomics that the Elliott School offers prior to the start of the fall semester

International applicants only: 

Please review International Applicant Information carefully for details on required documents, earlier deadlines for applicants requiring an I-20 or DS-2019 from GW, and English language requirements.

PLEASE NOTE that Elliott School programs require the following minimum English language test scores for admission:

  • Academic IETLS: an overall band score of 7.0 with no individual band score below 6.0; or
  • TOEFL: 600 on paper-based, or 100 on Internet-based

Supporting documents not submitted online should be mailed to:
Office of Graduate Admissions
 The Elliott School of International Affairs
 The George Washington University
 1957 E Street, NW, Suite 301
 Washington, DC 20052

Contact for questions:
 esiagrad@gwu.edu ~ 202.994.7050 ~ 202.994.9537 (fax)
 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday