Application Instructions

Admission to the Smeal Ph.D. Program is jointly granted by the Graduate School at Penn State and the academic program in which you apply.

  • Application Fee $65
    • Electronic application and application fee: you may pay by credit card online when you submit the application or you may send a check or money order. Applications without fees cannot be processed. If you do not wish to pay the application fee by credit card, please download the Application Fee Form and mail it along with your non-refundable application fee. Do not send cash. Make check  or money order payable to The Pennsylvania State University. International money order or check must be drawn on a U.S. bank. The canceled check serves as your receipt.

      Mail Application Fee Form to: 
      Graduate Enrollment Services
      The Pennsylvania State University
      114 Kern Building
      University Park, PA 16802
    • There is no application fee waiver and it is nonrefundable.

  • Resume or CV: be sure to include extra-curricular activities, community activities, and an up-to-date work history.
  • Statement of Purpose (SOP): answer the following questions:
    • What are your career objectives in pursuing a doctoral degree in Business Administration?
    • Why have you chosen to apply to the Pennsylvania State University for graduate study?
    • Describe any previous research that you have done, as well as the kind of research you wish to pursue during your graduate studies and beyond.
    • Optional: To what other graduate business programs are you applying?
  • Transcripts: for every completed degree
    • Must be a scanned copy of an original transcript (Do not mail anything in at this time)
    • Advising transcripts and degree audits from a self-service website are not acceptable
    • Two recommendation letters: Each recommender will be contacted by e-mail, therefore it’s important that you provide a valid e-mail address for each reference
    • If you wish to have more than 2 references, please send the names and e-mail addresses to, along with your name and student number
  • GRE/GMAT tests
    • Scores must be sent electronically from the testing center. The GMAT & GRE code for Penn State is 2660.
    • GMAT is required for Accounting.
    • Finance, Management and Organization, Marketing, Real Estate, and Supply Chain & Information Systems prefer GMAT scores, but the GRE is an acceptable alternative.
  • TOEFL test (For international applicants only)
    • Must have a total score of 80 or higher with a speaking score of 23 or higher.
    • ILETS scores are not accepted
    • Scores must be sent electronically from the testing center. The TOEFL code for Penn State is 2660.
    • Graduating with a bachelor's or master's degree from a college or university located in a country where the primary language is English by the time you would start the Ph.D. Program at Penn State would qualify for a TOEFL waiver. These countries include Australia, Belize, British Caribbean and British West Indies, Canada (except Quebec), England, Guyana, the Republic of Ireland, Liberia, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Scotland, the United States (except Puerto Rico), South Africa, or Wales.

      How to apply to the Graduate School at Penn State.