In addition to the requirements applicable to all students, the following documents are necessary before an application for an international student can be processed:
Translation and Evaluation of Transcripts
Students applying with coursework and degrees from institutions outside the U.S. must submit the following documents:
- Official transcripts from each college or university attended in the past and present.
- Copy of university/college degree diploma
- English translations provided by PLU approved translation services if the transcripts and documents are in a language other than English.
- PLU reserves the right to request further evaluation by an approved credential evaluation agency. Two approved evaluation providers are World Education Services (WES) and SpanTran.
If applicants wish to submit their official transcript through one of these two agencies, please follow these steps:
- Go to either www.wes.org or www.spantran.com and follow their instructions to order a credential evaluation.
- Request the agency to send their transcript evaluation with the verified transcripts and English translation (if applicable) directly to PLU Graduate Admission.
- Request your schools to send official transcripts directly to either WES or SpanTran. If your schools send official transcripts to WES or SpanTran, they do not need to send the transcripts to PLU.
Demonstrated University-level Proficiency in the English Language
Proficiency in English is required for graduate study at Pacific Lutheran University. Applicants whose native language is not English must demonstrate English language proficiency.
Proficiency can be demonstrated by the official score from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). See below for the minimum requirements for each graduate program.
The English proficiency requirement can also be met if applicants have completed one of the following:
- A bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree from a regionally-accredited institution in the United States. (This does not apply to nursing programs).
- A baccalaureate degree or higher from a recognized college or university in an English-speaking country or region, including Australia, Canada (other than Quebec), Great Britain, Ireland, or New Zealand. (This does not apply to nursing programs).
- Both primary and secondary education in an English-speaking country or region, including Australia, Canada (other than Quebec), Great Britain, Ireland, New Zealand, or the United States. Students are considered to be a native English speaker.
- A recognized Intensive English Program (IEP) in the United States and received an English proficiency level equivalent to the required minimum TOEFL/IELTS scores of the applied program.
Other waiver conditions may be allowed subject to the determination of individual graduate program.
Minimum TOEFL or IELTS requirements are as follows:
- Master of Business Administration: Minimum TOEFL-iBT of 88 or minimum IELTS score of 6.5.
- Master of Science in Accounting: Minimum TOEFL-iBT of 88 or minimum IELTS score of 6.5.
- Master of Science in Finance: Minimum TOEFL-iBT of 88 or minimum IELTS score of 6.5.
- Master of Science in Marketing Research: Minimum TOEFL-iBT of 88 or minimum IELTS score of 6.5.
- Creative Writing
- Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing: Minimum TOEFL-iBT score of 80 or minimum IELTS score of 6.5.
- Master of Arts in Education Non-Certification: Minimum TOEFL-iBT score of 88 or minimum IELTS score of 6.5. All other programs: Minimum TOEFL-iBT score of 80 or minimum IELTS score of 6.5.
- Marriage and Family Therapy
- Master of Arts (Marriage and Family Therapy): Minimum TOEFL-iBT score of 80 or minimum IELTS score of 6.5.
- Nursing (Master of Science in Nursing, Doctor in Nursing Practice, and Post-Graduate Nurse Practitioner Certificate)
- Minimum combined TOEFL-iBT score of 86, with minimum individual scores of 26 in speaking, 20 in writing, 20 in reading, and 20 in listening or minimum IELTS (academic version) band score of 6.5, with a minimum individual band scores of 8 speaking, 5.5 writing, 6.5 reading, and 6.5 listening. The proof of English proficiency requirement is waived for applicants who hold current unrestricted United States Registered Nurse licensure.
Note: International students who do not meet the English language proficiency requirements are encouraged to join the University community through the International Pathways Program (IPP). See details in the International Pathway Program (Graduate Studies) section.
An I-20 form (Certificate of Eligibility for Non-immigrant Student Status) will be issued only after the student has been admitted and paid the non-refundable $300.00 advanced tuition payment and has returned all required acceptance forms. The I-20 form should be taken to the U.S. Consulate when requesting a visa to come to the United States for a graduate program. The following items are not required for the application to be considered for admission, but are required prior to issuance of an I-20. To expedite admission processing, applicants should consider submitting the following with application documents:
- Declaration of Finances form, including proof of financial support. Certification of finances from banks or embassies is permissible.
- Copy of passport picture page
- Address and associated phone number to which to send the I-20 via courier service
International Student Arrival and Enrollment Requirements
International students are required by immigration regulations to enroll as full-time students (a minimum of 8 credit hours per semester for graduate studies). Students are also required to submit the appropriate medical forms to the university’s Health Services. Students may also be required to have a physical exam.
Before enrolling for classes, all international students are required to have health and medical insurance, which is obtained through the University after arrival on campus.
International students must also report to International Student Services (253.535.7264).