Country requirements for Graduate Applicants:
The university considers any student who currently holds a visa of any type or is seeking a visa to be international. Even if you do not require a student (F or J) visa to attend UIC, you are viewed as an international applicant. Most policies which apply to those seeking student visas will apply to holders of other types of visas.
You will first need to submit the following in order to apply to a graduate program at UIC:
- Completed Online Graduate Application
- $60.00 non-refundable Application Fee (required at the time of application submission)
After submitting the application, you will be requested to submit PDF copies of the following application requirements online through our application system:
- University-issued transcripts or marksheets for all undergraduate work in the original language
- University-issued transcripts or marksheets for all post-baccalaureate work in the original language
- Proof of all degrees awarded. Degrees certificates or diplomas should be submitted. (Exam certificates indicating only the passing of the course will not be sufficient. See FAQ)
- Certified English translations of all credentials issued in a foreign language
- TOEFL* or IELTS scores** - *TOEFL scores must be reported directly to UIC by ETS suing our Institutional Code 1851. **IELTS score reports should be uploaded.
- Additional Program Requirements as determined by program (GRE and other test scores, personal statement, letters of recommendation, writing samples, Millers analogies, etc.). Please refer to the program’s website or contact the program for additional information.
Access our Document Upload Guide for information on electronic document guidelines and initiating online requests for letters of recommendation.
Students who are admitted will be requested to mail in official, attested and sealed final credentials. Details on this will be included in the official admission letter. Official credential guidelines are also indicated below in the Glossary section.
Department Awards and Financial Assistance in the form Teaching Assistantships, Research Assistantships and Fellowships are awarded through the academic department. More information on financial support can be found at: http://grad.uic.edu/cms/?pid=1000078.
English Competency Requirement Exemptions
English competency requirement exemptions are not determined by the prevalence of spoken English in your country or the language of instruction at your university.
You may qualify for a waiver if you can provide the following:
- Evidence of enrollment at a U.S. institution for at least 2 years of full-time study.
- A letter from a U.S. employer stating that you are proficient in the use of English and that you have been employed at the establishment for at least 1 year.
- Education or employment for the duration of time listed above in a country where English is the only, official language, i.e. UK, Australia, Canada (excluding Quebec).
The Graduate College minimum requirements* for English competency scores are as follows:
Writing - 21
Speaking - 20
Listening - 17
Reading - 19
Total score - 80
Listening - 6.0
Writing - 6.0
Reading - 6.0
Speaking - 6.0
Total Score - 6.5
Paper-based (PBT) - 550
Computer-based (CBT) - 213
*Individual UIC departments and programs may require higher scores. Please check with them.
In cases where departments recommend admission for applicants with scores below the minimums, applications will be referred to the Graduate College for approval.
Other English Competency tests
Other English competency exams may be available to students and may be accepted by other institutions. UIC accepts scores for TOEFL and IELTS only. We do not accept TSE, TWE, Cambridge examinations, TOEIC, or other similar tests in place of TOEFL. Some departments may give consideration to students who have completed these exams (specifically TSE and TWE) in addition to the TOEFL or IELTS. Please contact your department on details regarding their policies.
Other Admission Options at the Discretion of the Admitting College or Department – International Bridge Program
In certain cases where a student presents strong academic credentials but does not meet minimum English proficiency, the admitting college or department can offer the opportunity to study intensive English language prior to beginning study in a degree program. This opportunity is known as the International Bridge Program. The Tutorium in Intensive English (TIE) coordinates UIC’s intensive English instruction. Students enrolled in the International Bridge Program pay UIC’s fees and assessments for campus services and TIE tuition. All standard admissions requirements must be completed including all tests such as the TOEFL/IELTS.
For more information regarding the I-20 process, you must visit the Office of International Services website at http://www.ois.uic.edu/
Different types of registration holds and how to clear them
As a new student at UIC, you will most likely have registration holds that will need to be cleared before you are able to enroll in classes. All international students have a SEVIS hold on their account which takes effect upon admission. You will need to check in with the Office of International Services when you first arrive on campus for advising. They will be able to lift your SEVIS hold when you arrive.
Students who have been admitted with pending conditions will receive a transcript hold that is created by the Office of Admissions . T his occurs because the Office of Admissions has not yet received your final or official academic credentials. You can tell if you have been admitted conditionally by carefully reading your admit letter. The items that are pending will show at the bottom of your admit letter.
Transcript holds do not go into effect until the registration period for your 1st term at UIC is over. This means that you will not be affected by the hold until you try to register for your 2nd term at UIC. The Office of Admissions encourages you to bring in your final/official documents when you first arrive on campus. By doing so, you will be able to resolve this issue before your registration is ever affected. It will also ensure that you have plenty of time to obtain correct versions of any documents that the Office of Admissions has not found acceptable.
Students may also encounter advising holds. These are placed by your academic program to ensure that you meet with an advisor prior to registering for classes. You will need to consult with your academic department for an advisor assignment. They will be able to guide you through the necessary steps for having any advising holds released.
The Immunizations Office will also create holds for students who have failed to submit proper proof of immunizations. For more information on this topic go to: http://www.uic.edu/depts/oar/student_records/medical_immunization.html.
When holds take effect
SEVIS and advising holds will take effect immediately. These will block your first attempts to register at UIC.
Transcript holds placed by OAR will begin after the 10th day of your 1st semester at UIC. Registration for your 2nd term of study (and every subsequent term) will be blocked until the required credentials have been submitted.
Immunization holds will begin during your 1st term at UIC.
Students who have been recommended for admission, but cannot attend for valid reasons, may request to defer their admission. An admitted application can only be deferred once. Admission can be deferred for up to 1 academic year. (Applicants for the Fall term may defer to the following Spring, Summer, or Fall terms, but no further.) Admission to the term is contingent upon departmental admissions practices for that term. Students do not need to submit a new application, fee, or set of academic credentials in order for a deferral to be granted.
Only students who have been recommended admission by the department or officially admitted by the Graduate College are eligible to defer admission.
Denied applications and those cancelled due to missing academic credentials cannot be deferred.
If you are eligible to defer your admission, you will need to contact your academic program and request a deferral. Your department has the authority to grant your request or to deny it. Departmental awards may not be guaranteed for a new term.
If your department grants your deferral request, you will need to obtain new/correct evidence of financial support for the new term. Please contact the Office of International Services for further details about submitting the correction financial documents.
If your deferral is approved by The Office of Admissions , you will receive a letter of admission for the new term and a new I-20. Please return any unused I-20s to the Office of International Services.
What to do when you can’t obtain the required documentation
If your university refuses to issue the required documents, you will need to request a letter from a university or college authority (i.e.Registrar, Controller of Examinations, Dean, Principal etc.). The Office of Admissions will input a checklist request for this letter which will allow you to upload the document as you would any other document.
Students who have completed study at U.S. universities must provide transcripts for work completed. If students cannot obtain transcripts from a U.S. institution, no exception will be made so that the application can be reviewed for a decision.
What to do when your documents and your application are under different names
You should always use your full, legal name on all documents that you are submitting to UIC. Please include any alternate names in the space provided on the application. If you provided a different ordering or spelling of your name to ETS for GRE, TOEFL or IELTS reporting, please provide this name to the Office of Admissions . You may email any changes or updates to us using the UIC Prospective Student Contact form (no attachments).
Whom to contact for help
Most basic questions can be answered by thoroughly reading the graduate application, the instructions on the website for your academic program, and our FAQ.You may direct any inquiries to us using the UIC Prospective Student Contact form (no attachments). Questions sent to this address will be reviewed by an admissions counselor.
If you have a question or problem that is not addressed in our published material or by e-mail, admissions counselors are available for walk-in visits and via the phone on Mondays, Thursdays, and Fridays between the hours of 8:30am and 5pm. Each counselor works with a different set of academic programs, but any counselor will be able to help you. Contact persons in your department of interest will also be able to answer most questions.
Please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page for answers to a variety of questions that the Office of Admissions receives on a daily basis.
- Bosnia & Herzegovina--Index or Upsinica
- Croatia--Indeks or Uvjerjenje
- Germany—Scheinen or Student Reported Summary which has been certified by the university
- India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka--Marksheets (*see below)
- Countries following the Bologna Agreement—Transcripts. A diploma supplement may also be required.
- They should be issued on a yearly or semesterly basis
- Marks secured, minimum passing marks, and maximum marks should be shown
- They should be unconsolidated. Consolidated marks will not be accepted under any circumstance.
- Marksheets may be issued by the university or the college.
- Marksheets should be attested by the university or college Registrar, Controller of Exams, Dean or Principal. See the sections on Official vs. Unofficial documents and Attestation for more details.
- Marksheets should clearly list the course name. If all that is shown is Paper I, II, and III or Exams I, II, III for a certain subject, the Office of Admissions will ask for a syllabus or course descriptions.
- Always provide the back of the marksheets if any information regarding courses or grading policies is listed on it.
- Exam and Pass Certificates are not acceptable. Certificates stating that you passed the final or degree examination will not be used in place of a degree. Certificates stating that you successfully passed a degree or a final semester will also not be used.
- Provisional degrees will be accepted if the final degree has not yet been issued. The Office of Admissions will take a provisional degree certificate or provisional degree statement as long as it explicitly states that you have qualified for the degree and that it will be conferred at a future date or convocation. It must be issued by the University; not the college. Provisional degrees should be submitted in the same format as other official documents. If a provisional degree is accepted the Office of Admissions will not require the submission of the final degree at a later date (will likely require and official attested copy of the provisional degree).
From foreign institutions, copies of original documents which have been attested by the university or college authority and sealed by the same individual will be considered as official. Each document should be individually attested.
Documents may be considered unofficial for the following reasons:
- Attestation is not consistent. If each document is stamped by a different individual, the Office of Admissions will not accept them as official.
- Attestation is not performed by the correct university or college official. Documents should be attested by the university Registrar (assistant, associate or deputy), Controller of Examinations, attestation officer, Principal or Dean. Documents attested by other individuals or college officials will not be accepted.
- Documents were submitted in plain or open envelopes. Envelopes must be sealed at the time they are presented to OAR and must bear the stamp or signature of the attesting individual over the flap.
- Attestation has been done by EducationUSA or similar third party.
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