How to Apply

Applicants must apply for admission by selecting either the Social Work or Anthropology Ph.D. program and then selecting the SWAN program application.  They must meet the admissions standards of the Graduate School and the SWAN program.

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Admission Requirements for SWAN

Consistent with all other graduate programs at WSU, admission to the Social Work and Anthropology Program (SWAN) is contingent upon admission to the Graduate School. The deadline for applications to the SWAN program will be January 10th each year to start in the fall semester; offers of admission will be made at the end of March.

Required GPA: Applicants to the SWAN program should meet the strongly preferred standard of a 3.7 or above (4.0 scale) undergraduate GPA. 

Required background experience or credentials: Students will be expected to have a background in social science courses at the undergraduate or graduate level. Students with a lower GPA or lower GRE scores may be admitted if the rest of their application file is exceptionally strong, especially if they have relevant experience. There is no required background experience.

Specific admission requirements: Applicants are expected to include:

  • A Statement of Professional Goals: The statement should be a three to five pages long and should describe the motivation for earning this interdisciplinary degree, including a description of relevant previous studies and any experiences outside of normal coursework that are relevant to the applicant’s proposed field of study and career goals.  The statement should demonstrate thoughtfulness about how each of the two disciplines can contribute to the applicant’s scholarship and why an interdisciplinary program is important for the applicant’s specific career goals.  It should also contain a discussion of a potential focus for research and how that research interest may fit with one or more of the research programs of particular faculty members in Social Work and Anthropology at WSU. 
  • A writing sample of at least approximately 10 pages that shows strong writing and analytic skills and a capacity for conducting independent research.
  • Applicants for the SWAN PhD must also provide 3 letters of recommendation, attesting to their ability to perform doctoral level work. At least two letters should be from faculty, researchers, practitioners or administrators holding a doctoral degree, who will be asked to evaluate the applicant’s scholarship and aptitude for research.
  • Applicants must take the GRE exam and should attain a combined quantitative and verbal GRE score of 300.
  • Names of all colleges and universities attended so transcripts can be obtained.
  • English Language Proficiency: Students whose native language is not English are expected to complete the TOEFL examination. A score of 80 or higher is required for admission into the program.

Applicants may be asked to participate in a personal interview (in person or by phone/Skype) with members of the SWAN steering committee.

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