Application Requirements 2019-2020 Edition

Application Requirements

Bryant University is committed to enrolling classes of students with strong credentials that show a high promise of professional success. To be admitted to any Bryant graduate program, applicants must be (or about to become) a graduate of an accredited, four-year college or university.

Program specific admission requirements  and instructions appear in the on line graduate application.  All applicants (domestic and international, regardless of degree program, are required to submit:

  • An on line application to Bryant University Graduate Programs.
  • $80 application fee (non-refundable)
  • Official transcripts from ALL colleges or universities from which the applicant received course credit and earned their highest degree - To be admitted to the M.A. Communication program, prospective students must: have earned a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution with an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale). Non-Communication undergraduate majors may be asked to take foundational coursework.
  • Letter(s) of recommendation - Submit three letters of reference, at least two of which should be academic references from individuals who can comment on the candidate's ability to be successful as a graduate student.
  • Either your GRE scores or an Essay 

The Essay: In a 1000-1500 word professional essay, students applying for the Master of Arts degree in Communication should address the following areas.  The essay must be double-spaced with one-inch margins, size 11 or 12 font. The essay should be free of grammatical and spelling errors.

  1. A statement of your plans for graduate study and career goals involving communication, as well as how Bryant University's Communication program will help you meet your career and educational objectives. It is recommended that this statement include aspects of the Communication graduate program (e.g., courses, faculty interests, etc.) and also how the Communication discipline fits into your graduate plans and career goals. Applicants are encouraged to visit the National Communication Association's website (www.natcom.org) for more information about the Communication discipline.
  2. A personal statement about how your background and life experiences, such as social, economic, cultural, familial, education or other opportunities and challenges, motivated your decision to specifically pursue a Communication graduate degree.
  • *Resume

*Not required for applicants to a Certificate of Graduate Study

International Applicants - Additional Application Requirements

Students from across the globe who enroll in a graduate program at Bryant University bring valuable perspectives to the classroom.  In addition to the application requirements listed above, international students must also secure a proper visa, by submitting the following:

  • Official transcripts from ALL colleges and universities from which the applicant received course credit and earned their highest degree - translated into English and converted to a 4.0 scale.
  • Official documentation from an academic evaluation agency indicating that the applicant has earned a degree equivalent to U.S. bachelor's degree.
  • Official TOEFL score for applicants whose native language is not English or whose undergraduate instruction was not conducted in English.
  • Applicants seeking an I-20 will need to submit a completed International Student Certificate of Finances to verify financial resources.

Specific admission requirements and instructions for International applicants are available in the International Applicant section of the on line application.

Accepted Applicants

Accepted Applicants are required to pay a non-refundable commitment deposit, once admitted to a graduate program or graduate certificate program. The deposit is applied to the student's tuition bill.  International students will not be issued an I20 until the required commitment deposit is received.

Accepted applicants may defer admission for up to one year from the original semester for which they applied. Requests for a deferral must be made in writing to the appropriate graduate program director. After the allotted time has expired, the applicant must re-apply to the program.

Deposited Applicants

Prior to the start of the semester, deposited applicants may defer admission, up to one year, without forfeiture of the deposit, by submitting a request for a deferral, in writing, to the appropriate graduate program director.

Types of Graduate Admissions

The College of Arts and Sciences recognizes four types of students who are eligible to enroll in graduate courses.

  • Degree Students - A degree student is one who has been formally admitted to a program leading to a degree. A Master's Degree applicant may be admitted unconditionally or as a provisional or probationary student.
  • Non-matriculating Student  (Special Student Status) - A non-matriculating student is one who does not seek a degree or has not been officially admitted to a graduate degree program. Such a student may enroll in up to two graduate courses without completing the formal application process, and without being required to submit references or applicable test scores to the Graduate Admissions Office. However, transcripts are required.  Any student from an accredited institution may apply for special student status once he or she has completed at least 90 credit hours with a minimum overall grade point average of 3.0.

A non-matriculating student may register for courses for which he or she has the prerequisites, unless such registration is restricted by the department or the College of Arts and Sciences. If a non-matriculating student decides to pursue a degree at Bryant University, he or she may petition that previous courses taken at Bryant University may be accepted in meeting requirements for a degree. If the petition is recommended by the department and approved by the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, these courses may be counted toward a degree.

Non-matriculating (“Special Students”) may only register by completing a Special Student Registration form for courses when seats exist in the section, and may not displace a matriculated student from registering in a course because of space limitations.

  • Non-Degree Graduate Certificate Students - Graduate level certificates are graduate courses of study approved by an academic unit designed to provide professional development and career advancement opportunities, to broaden career options, or to enhance an individual’s skills or education as part of the process of life-long learning. These certificates are not part of degree programs, although courses completed as part of a certificate curriculum could be used in meeting degree requirements.

Graduate Certificates are an organized series of graduate courses which may require a minimum of 12, but no more than 17, hours beyond the bachelor’s degree. See the individual offerings from each department for more details.

  • 4 + 1 Students: Applying to a Graduate Program as an Undergraduate - An initial application to an Arts and Sciences graduate program can occur at any time during a student’s enrollment at Bryant University. 

After completing 75 undergraduate hours, the student must take any graduate standardized tests required by the program and complete his or her formal application for the intended program. There is no application fee. After 92 hours, there is a preliminary audit of the student’s progress. If accepted at this time, the student is eligible to enroll in graduate courses (500 and 600 level) during the last 30 hours of his or her studies.

Two of these courses can be counted toward the completion of both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the case of 30-hour master’s programs; 3 may count toward the completion of both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the case of 36-hour master’s programs. The student remains classified as an undergraduate until 122 hours are completed, after which time he or she will be classified as a graduate student.

After completing 122 undergraduate hours and are degree certified, the student is assessed tuition fees at the graduate level. The student is also eligible for financial aid and work study opportunities or other types of support/recognition at the graduate level. During the last semester of the undergraduate program, a student may be eligible for a graduate work study opportunity.