George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Grad Admissions FAQs

Gaining admission into our graduate programs is a multi-step process, but we're here to walk you through it. Find all the information you need and want here.

How Should I Submit My Transcripts?

Domestic Applicants

Students applying for graduate study must have earned a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education, which is verified by official transcripts, by the time they enroll at Mason. Applicants are required to submit a transcript for each institution they have attended, even if they have not earned a degree. Official transcripts submitted in hard copy must be sealed in their original envelopes. Scanned or opened copies cannot be accepted as official.

Electronic Transcripts can be sent to UGtrans@gmu.edu. Paper copies of official transcripts can be sent directly to:

Office of Graduate Admissions
George Mason University
4400 University Drive, MS 4C8
Fairfax, VA 22030

Domestic students may upload a scanned copy of their official transcript as part of their online application. Your application can be reviewed with these documents. Please note, however, in the event that you are admitted and decide to attend Mason, the Office of Graduate Admissions requires an official copy to be on file within your first semester. Failure to submit an official copy of all required transcripts will result in a hold on your registration for the following term. 

International Applicants

Students applying for graduate study must have earned a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution of higher education by the time they enroll at Mason. Applicants are required to submit at least one copy of their transcript for each higher education institution you have attended. Unofficial versions of transcripts may be uploaded as part of the application and considered for admissions purposes. Students who would prefer to submit official transcripts must send documents sealed in their original envelope. Scanned, electronic, or opened copies cannot be accepted as official. Please review the guidelines for international transcript submission

Official transcripts can be mailed directly to:

Office of Graduate Admissions
George Mason University
4400 University Drive, MS 4C8
Fairfax, VA 22030

A transcript evaluation is also required for all international transcripts. Evaluations must be completed by an accredited agency approved by NACES or AACRAO, or you may submit your transcript for evaluation by George Mason’s International Credential Evaluation office. Mason can perform an evaluation on complete, unofficial copies of transcripts. If you choose to use Mason’s service, please expect 6 to 8 weeks for processing.

For more information, visit the International section.

*Note: For admitted students needing an F-1 or J-1 visa, the Office of Graduate Admissions and the Office of International Services and Programs must have an official transcript on file before visa paperwork can be completed. These can be submitted to the Office of Graduate Admissions after receipt of an admitted decision to the above address. 

What Do I Need to Apply to a Licensure Program?

Overview

CVPA offers teaching licensure programs in Art, Music, and Theater at the graduate level. Students who complete these programs and meet the state's requirements are certified to teach PK through 12th grades in their subject area in the state of Virginia.

There are certain state-mandated requirements that are part of the application process for those who are seeking entry into a license-granting program at George Mason. This is why we ask for Passing Praxis Core Test Scores and an Endorsement Worksheet as part of your application.

Passing Praxis Core Test Scores

The College of Education and Human Development (CEHD) has information on registering for the exam, minimum score requirements, and suitable substitutes. There is also information about workshops to help you prepare for the exam.

Applicants must have a passing score or acceptable substitution to be considered for admission into the license-granting program. Students who do not receive a passing score the first time are welcome to take the test again. However, please keep in mind that we need your passing score by the application deadline. Scores can take approximately 1 to 2 months to reach our office, so you'll need to plan ahead.

Endorsement Worksheet

CEHD has provided a convenient online system to help you evaluate your completed coursework to ensure that you are ready to enter a license-granting program. You do not need an application on file to start this step. It's best to do this before you even think about applying to make sure you're on the right track.

Follow these steps to complete this requirement:

1. Create an account. This is where you'll continue to log in to access your online worksheet. 
2. Select your program from the list (Art Education, Music Education, or Theater Education).
3. Fill out the worksheet to include courses you have taken in the past, either for degree or non-degree status.
4. When you have filled out as much of the worksheet as you can, click submit.
5. This is the most important step: submit a scanned copy of your official transcript(s) – whichever ones apply to this worksheet - by email to BOTH endorse@gmu.edu and artsgrad@gmu.edu. After submitting your transcripts by email, you will be contacted shortly by a specialist or faculty member to discuss your worksheet.

  • Students with internationally granted degrees will need to submit a course-by-course evaluation. You can find information on how to obtain this kind of evaluation here
  • You might be asked to make an appointment with either the endorsement specialist or with your department to discuss your worksheet.
  • This part of the process can take up to 2 to 3 weeks to complete.

6. When your worksheet has been evaluated, you will be instructed to upload a PDF version of your approved form as part of your online application.

These particular requirements take additional time to complete and cannot be rushed. It's best to plan ahead and give yourself plenty of time to successfully fulfill these requirements before the application deadline to allow the best chance at admission into the program.

Unit-Specific Requirements

Our Art Education and Music Education programs require an assessment of the applicant's skills as part of the application: 

State of Virginia's Requirements for Licensure

George Mason University will verify completion of the requirements of a Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) state-approved preparation program at the graduate level. Such verification does not guarantee the issuance of Virginia Collegiate Professional, Postgraduate Professional, or Pupil Personnel license from the Commonwealth of Virginia. It is solely the student's responsibility to comply with all requirements for licensure by the Commonwealth. Under Virginia law a social security number is required for licensure.

How Do I Submit A Portfolio or Pre-Screening Materials?

SlideRoom Submissions

All CVPA Graduate programs that require supplemental media materials as part of their application use SlideRoom to manage these submissions. Applicants who are applying to the following programs must upload their items through the appropriate SlideRoom portal:

  • Artist Certificate Programs, all concentrations
  • Certificate, Art Education Licensure
  • Master of Art, Graphic Design
  • Master of Art in Teaching, Art Education (MAT I and MAT II tracks)
  • Master of Fine Arts, Visual and Performing Arts, concentration in Dance
  • Master of Fine Arts, Visual and Performing Arts, concentration in Graphic Design
  • Master of Fine Arts, Visual and Performing Arts, concentration in Theater
  • Master of Fine Arts, Visual and Performing Arts, concentration in Visual Arts
  • Master of Music, all concentrations
  • Doctor of Musical Arts, all concentrations
  • Ph.D., Music Education

Items will not be accepted in any other format. The link to submit your SlideRoom portfolio should become available through your self-service center within 72 hours of submitting your online application. You should also be sent a link to the submission site through your confirmation email. If you do not receive the link or see it in your self-service center after 72 hours of submitting and paying for your online application, please contact the Office of Graduate Admissions (masongrad@gmu.edu or 703-993-9700) for assistance. 

Links and Fees

Links to these portals will be provided by email upon submission of your online application; links will not be posted on the CVPA or the programs' websites. A Mason ID number (i.e. G number) is required for SlideRoom submission and should be available through your self-service center within 72 hours of submitting and paying for your online application to the university. If you do not see the information after the 72-hour time frame, please contact the Office of Graduate Admissions (masongrad@gmu.edu or 703-993-9700) for assistance. 

Please note that all supplemental media items will only be accepted through SlideRoom; no CVPA program will accept hard copies of materials or emailed items unless explicitly stated as part of the program's requirements. Students should read the requirements for their programs carefully and submit only what is required.

There is an additional fee for submitting materials through SlideRoom, which should not exceed $15.

Could I take classes without being in a degree program?

Non-Degree Admissions

Applicants who want to take courses in one of our schools must complete a non-degree application for the term in which the course is offered. Applications require a resume and transcripts of all institutions previously attended. Applicants should also indicate which courses they intend to take on the application. 

Transfer of Credit

Credits earned in non-degree status can potentially be transferred after admission to a degree-seeking program. For policies and guidelines, visit the University Catalog for more information. 

Who can I contact with questions?

For general questions about the admissions process - deadlines, contacts, clarification on application requirements, general Financial Aid questions - you are welcome to contact the CVPA Graduate Admissions Office for guidance at any stage in the Admissions process.

For technical assistance with the online application or to check on the status of submitted items, please contact the university's Office of Graduate Admissions directly at masongrad@gmu.edu or call 703-993-9700 for direct help. 

Additional Questions?

For program-specific questions - such as information about coursework and other requirements, how to outline a curriculum plan, and available opportunities within the program - you may reach out to the program contact, all of whom are listed below. Please keep in mind that they cannot discuss your application with you while it is under review. Therefore, it is best to reach out to the program contact before you apply. For questions during the application review process, please contact the CVPA Graduate Admissions Office.
Topic Contact Name, Title Contact Information
Graduate Admissions: General Questions, SlideRoom, Endorsement Worksheet Questions (all disciplines) Stevie Otto, Assistant Director of Graduate Admissions artsgrad@gmu.edu or 703-993-5576
Graduate Admissions: Application/Application-status related Questions Office of Graduate Admissions 703-993-9700; masongrad@gmu.edu
Art Education programs, MFA in Visual Arts or Graphic Design, or Graphic Design, MA Prof. Nikki Brugnoli, Academic Advisor and Graduate Programs Coordinator for School of Art nbrugnol@gmu.edu
Arts Management Elizabeth Ricks, Program Coordinator ericks@gmu.edu
Computer Game Design Prof. Sang Nam, Graduate Program Coordinator snam5@gmu.edu
Dance: MFA in Visual and Performing Arts Prof. Elizabeth Price, Graduate Program Coordinator dance@gmu.edu or 703-993-1114
Music Education Programs: Certificate, MM, and Ph.D. Dr. Brian Wuttke, Director of Music Education for School of Music lbillin1@gmu.edu
Music Grad Programs: Artist Certificate, Music & Well-Being Certificate, MM and DMA Programs Dr. Lisa Billingham, Director of Graduate Studies for School of Music lbillin1@gmu.edu
Theater: MFA in Visual and Performing Arts and Theater Education program  Dr. Kristen Johnsen-Neshati, Graduate Program Coordinator kneshati@gmu.edu
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