How to Apply: Master's Degrees

Application Deadlines for MPA

  • February 15: Deadline for consideration for admission and Humphrey School merit-based aid
  • After February 15: Applications for admission considered on a space-available basis

Application Deadlines for MDP, MHR, MPP, MS-STEP and MURP

How to apply

You may only apply to one master's program in each academic year. Spring admission is not available for master's programs. View the admission requirements for individual degree programs.

Graduate School Application

All Humphrey School applicants must complete a Graduate School Application. You also must submit the additional Humphrey School section in the Graduate School application. The application is $75 for domestic students and $95 for international students.

Application Fee Waivers

Fellows and Volunteers

The Humphrey School provides application fee waivers for Pickering Fellows, PPIA Fellows, Truman Scholars, Americorps, City Year, and Returning Peace Corps Volunteers applying for the Peace Corps/Coverdell Fellowship. Please complete this form to request a waiver before submitting your application.

McNair Scholars

McNair Scholars may qualify for a University of Minnesota McNair Application Fee Grant which pays for the cost of an application fee. Visit the McNair Scholar Resources site for more information. If you are a McNair Scholar who is unsuccessful in securing a University McNair Application Fee Grant, contact the Humphrey School Office of Admissions.

Fall Preview Day

Individuals who participate in Fall Preview Day on November 3 will receive an application fee waiver. Fall Preview Day is an excellent opportunity for prospective students to learn about the Humphrey School, meet our faculty, and network with current students and alumni.

Personal Statement

A personal statement is required of all applicants. In 500 words or fewer, double spaced, discuss your educational and professional experiences and goals. Relate these goals to your personal history and to the programs at the Humphrey School. Upload this statement into “Statement #1” in the applicant’s statement section of the Graduate School application.

Resume or CV

A resume or CV is required of all Humphrey School applicants and should be uploaded into the “Resume or CV” section of the Graduate School application. Please include awards and leadership, service or volunteer activities in your resume.

Diversity Statement

The diversity statement is optional yet recommended for all applicants. The statement should discuss how your background, experiences, and achievements will contribute to the University's goal of promoting excellence through diversity. If applicable, applicants should mention hardships or obstacles that they have overcome to complete their undergraduate education (e.g. low-income and first-generation college applicants).

English Language Proficiency Requirement

The University of Minnesota and the Humphrey School requires international applicants to submit scores from either the TOEFL, IELTS, or MELAB examination to assess English language proficiency. Applicants who are unsure if they are required to demonstrate English proficiency should contact the Graduate School <>.

Score Minimums:
A minimum TOEFL score of 600 (paper test) or 100 (internet test) is required. Applicants must also score a minimum of 21 in writing and 19 in reading of the TOEFL. An IELTS score of 7.0 overall or higher is also acceptable. Applicants must also score a minimum of a 6.5 in both the reading and writing sections of the IELTS. A minimum score of 80 is required for the MELAB. Scores must be less than two years old.

Applicants who have completed 24 quarter credits or 16 semester credits (within the past 24 months) in residence as a full-time student at a recognized institution of higher learning in the United States. If you wish to be considered for a waiver, please fill out this waiver request: English Proficiency Waiver

How to submit your scores:
TOEFL: When submitting official TOEFL scores, please use the University of Minnesota school code 6874. An official TOEFL score report must be received directly from ETS before an official admissions notification will be made. You may upload your personal copy from the Educational Testing Service (ETS) into the Program Supplementary Information section of the Graduate School online application to facilitate initial review of your application.

IELTS or MELAB: Official IELTS or MELAB scores must be sent directly from the test center to the Office of Graduate Admissions, 309 Johnston Hall, 101 Pleasant Street SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455.You may upload your personal copy from the Educational Testing Service (ETS) into the Program Supplementary Information section of the Graduate School online application to facilitate initial review of your application.


Unofficial transcripts or academic records of all post secondary institutions attended should be uploaded directly to the online application. Please do not mail in paper copies of your transcripts (there is no need for official transcripts or academic records for initial review). Transcripts are required of all Humphrey School applicants. If you are admitted, the University will then request official copies of this material.

GRE Scores

The GRE is required for MDP, MHR, MPP, MS-STEP, and MURP applicants. An official score report must be received directly from ETS before an official admissions notification will be made. You may upload your personal copy from ETS into the additional materials section of the Graduate School online application to facilitate initial review of your application. While you may take the test up to the application deadline for which you are applying and self-report your scores for consideration; this is not advisable due to the Office of Admissions' inability to guarantee that it will receive your scores (self-reported or official) in time the day of the deadline for consideration. We encourage applicants to plan in advance and to submit their scores prior to application deadlines. The school code for the University of Minnesota is RA 6874.

Please note: MPA program applicants are not required to submit GRE scores.

Letters of Recommendation

At least three letters of recommendation are required of MDP, MHR, MPA, MPP, MS-STEP, and MURP applicants. Please request your letters of recommendation through the Graduate School application system. If your recommender cannot upload his/her recommendation online, s/he may send it in a sealed envelope signed across the back flap to the Humphrey School. Faxed and e-mailed copies are not accepted. Please ask your recommender to disregard the application "Recommendation" section instructions for "Narrative" and "Qualities to be ranked." These sections are not required; instead, we require letters that provide an appraisal of the candidate's ability to pursue an advanced degree, his/her experience in, or potential for, public service and leadership, his/her motivation and purpose, and strengths and weaknesses that might affect his/her performance and potential for success as a graduate student.

Special Considerations

Applicants wishing to provide additional information to the admissions committee which is not appropriate for other required documents but may be helpful in their consideration as a candidate for admission, should be uploaded as a statement into the “Extenuating Circumstances” section of the Graduate School application. Examples may include, but are not limited to: explanations for grade trends during undergraduate work, time lapses between employment as documented in the resume/CV, or other personal circumstances which may provide additional and helpful context.


225 Humphrey School
301 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Alumna Gwendolyn Freed (MPA '07) describes her experiences as a student at Humphrey--how you'll "take your foot off the brake," take advantage of mentoring, and move forward.