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In light of the current situation with the COVID-19 pandemic, Stanford reaffirms its commitment to perform individualized, holistic review of each applicant to its graduate and professional programs. We recognize that students may have faced significant challenges during the period of disruption caused by the pandemic, and we will take such individual circumstances into account during application review. Importantly, we will respect decisions regarding the adoption of Credit/No Credit and other grading options during this unprecedented period of COVID-19 disruption, whether they are made by institutions or by individual students. Our goal remains to form graduate student cohorts that are excellent and encompass a diversity of perspectives, backgrounds and experiences that enrich the graduate educational experience.


Admitted students: see our special instructions for submitting transcripts. We are aware of some school closings in areas impacted by the coronavirus outbreak, and that it may delay some courses of study as well as the reporting of official school documents. If you are impacted by this, please contact our office to request an extension: gradadmissions@stanford.edu. We will do our best to work with you and your department.


Winter Closure: The University observes Winter closure from Monday, December 14, 2020 through Friday, January 1, 2021. The Graduate Admissions office will not be monitoring email during this time.

Letters of Recommendation

Three recommendations are required. Letters of recommendation are handled via an online recommendation system which is part of our online application.

In the Recommendations section of the application you will be asked to register the following information:

  • Names of three recommenders. You may register up to six recommenders, but three are required. Do not duplicate names or contact information. 
  • Institute or Business Affiliation of each recommender.
  • Valid email address of each recommender. An email will be sent to your recommenders with information on how to proceed.  
  • Waiver – You must choose whether or not to waive your right to see a recommendation. It may be that a recommender will not submit a recommendation if you have not waived the right to see it. This should be discussed in advance. Your choice will be transmitted to the recommender in the instructional email he/she will receive.

At least one letter should be a faculty member at the last school you attended as a full-time student (unless you have been out of school for more than five years). Substitutions for faculty recommendations may include work associates or others who can comment on your academic potential for graduate work.