Degrees and Fields of Study
- Africana Studies
- Africana Studies/Economics
- Africana Studies/Museum Studies
- Africana Studies/Journalism
Note: The field of study descriptions may not exactly match the actual program name on the degree that is conferred. Please refer to the GSAS Bulletin section Degree and Certificate Programs as Registered by the New York State Education Department for the actual program name and degree conferred.
M.A. in Africana Studies and Africana Studies/Museum Studies Applications
- January 4: Admission with financial aid consideration, fall only
- March 15: Final deadline date for admission only (no financial aid consideration), fall only
- November 1: Final deadline date for admission only (no financial aid consideration), spring 2021 only
M.A. in Africana Studies/Economics Applications
- January 15, fall only admission
Joint M.A. in Africana Studies/Journalism Applications
- January 4, fall only admission
All application materials must be received by 5 p.m. eastern time on the deadline date. If an application deadline falls on a Saturday, Sunday or legal U.S. holiday, then the next business day will be the deadline date.
Application Requirements for Africana Studies
All applicants to the Graduate School of Arts and Science (GSAS) are required to submit a complete application for admission. A complete application includes the online application, academic transcripts, test scores (if required), letters of recommendation, a résumé or curriculum vitae, a Statement of Academic Purpose, and an application fee. Applicants also have the option of providing a short Personal History essay. Please refer to the Instructions section of the online application. In addition, the department specifically requires the following:
GRE for applicants to Africana Studies MA only (other programs see below): GRE general test not required. Please do not send us GRE test scores. If you do, the scores will not be reviewed or considered by the department's Admissions Committee.
GRE for applicants to Africana Studies/Economics: The GRE general test requirement is optional for fall 2021 due to COVID-19. We will consider GRE test scores if they are submitted. Scoring well on the GRE may strengthen your application, especially if you perceive that you have weaknesses in your prior academic record. Not taking the GRE will not adversely affect your application and we will make no assumptions about why you did not take the test. In subsequent terms, the general test will be required.
GRE for applicants to Africana Studies/Journalism: The GRE general test requirement is suspended for fall 2021 due to COVID-19. Please do not send us GRE test scores. If you do, the scores will not be reviewed or considered by the department's Admissions Committee. In subsequent terms, the general test is required.
GRE for applicants Africana Studies/Museum Studies: GRE general test optional. We will consider GRE test scores if they are submitted. Scoring well on the GRE may strengthen your application, especially if you perceive that you have weaknesses in your prior academic record. Not taking the GRE will not adversely affect your application and we will make no assumptions about why you did not take the test.
TOEFL or IELTS: Either the TOEFL or the IELTS is required of all applicants who are not native English speakers or who do not have a bachelor's or master's degree from an institution where the language of instruction is English. See test score FAQ.
Statement of Academic Purpose (all programs except the Joint M.A. in Africana Studies/Journalism): In a concisely written statement, please describe your past and present work as it relates to your intended field of study, your educational objectives, and your career goals. In addition, please include your intellectual and professional reasons for choosing your field of study and why your studies/research can best be done at the Graduate School of Arts and Science at NYU. The statement should not exceed two double-spaced pages.
Statement of Academic Purpose (Joint M.A. in Africana Studies/Journalism): In addition to the Statement of Academic Purpose instructions above, Journalism requires applicants to write a personal essay. The essay is an extremely important part of the application, so treat it accordingly. The essay should be 1,000 to 1,500 words in length.
The goal of the essay is to give the Admissions Committee a concrete sense of who you are as someone who aspires to a career as a professional journalist, writing and reporting for print, online or broadcast media. It should address the following questions: What do you expect to get from the program? What aspects of your experience are most relevant to your interest in journalism? Tell us about your background--your academic degree, intellectual interests, work experience, life experience, and other sources of inspiration--and explain how this background informs what you want to do as a journalist.
Applicants should also describe their existing "body of work" as a journalist, critic or just someone who writes. We are mostly interested in published work, but if you have yet to break into print, then tell us what kind of writing you have done. What have been your major themes? What issues and phenomena most engage you? What publications do you read regularly and why? Which journalists do you admire, which do you dislike, and which have influenced you?
Please append to your essay a brief statement of your plans for financing your graduate work. This statement must be included, whether or not you are applying for financial aid.
Writing Sample (all programs except the Joint M.A. in Africana Studies/Journalism): An academic writing sample is required.
Writing Sample (Joint M.A. in Africana Studies/Journalism): Two different writing samples are required. One should be an academic writing sample. The second should represent your aptitude for journalism. A clip from your college newspaper, a personal essay, academic research paper, and short fiction are all acceptable.
The Graduate School of Arts and Science reserves the right to change this information at any time. This document supersedes all previous versions.
Last updated September 16, 2020.
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