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Graduate School

O'Dowd Hall, Room 520
586 Pioneer Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4482
(location map)
(248) 370-2700

Office Hours:
Monday - Friday 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Graduate School

O'Dowd Hall, Room 520
586 Pioneer Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4482
(location map)
(248) 370-2700

Office Hours:
Monday - Friday 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Elliott Tower with the sun shining behind it

How to Apply

At Oakland University, you’ll have the opportunity to reach your dreams academically, socially and professionally. You’ll have the chance to conduct research, advance your career, propel your learning potential and so much more.

OU’s graduate admission policy is selective and the process is competitive. Applicants must present evidence that demonstrates the academic preparation needed to pursue a graduate degree. International students and Non-Degree seeking students should follow their specific application instructions.

Apply Now Events
Steps to apply

Follow these steps prior to applying to Graduate School. You must submit your application online along with all required materials. Graduate applications will not be reviewed until they are complete. Current OU undergraduate students may apply for permission to enroll in graduate courses.

Step 1: Before applying to graduate school 

A. Identify your program of interest

Oakland University offers more than 130 master’s, doctoral and certificate programs. If you have questions about specific program details, contact the department or program coordinator at the top of each program listing. General application and admission process questions can be sent to Graduate Admissions. For assistance in identifying a graduate program please fill out the form.

B. Review admission criteria and program deadlines

First learn about general graduate admission requirements. Then check out admission requirements and application deadlines for your specific program of interest. Remember that an “application deadline” means that the application for admission and all supporting documents and information must be received by the deadline date.

All applicants must submit the following: 

  • Online application
  • Official transcripts providing evidence of a baccalaureate degree awarded from a regionally accredited U.S. institution
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary educational institutions and for any graduate-level coursework beyond a bachelor's degree
  • Two professional recommendations for Graduate Admission (forms will become available after you submit the application)
  • Curriculum Vitae or Resume

Some programs may have additional requirements including: 

  • Official standard admission test scores (GRE, GMAT, etc.)
  • Program supplemental application 
  • Goal Statement/Experience Statement/Essay 
  • Additional professional recommendation for Graduate Admissions
  • Proof of certification, license, etc. 
  • Proof of program pre-requisite courses required for admission into a specific degree program 

International applicants requiring an I-20 for a visa must submit additional documents including: 

  • Affidavit of support 
  • Certified bank statement
  • Statement of finances 
  • F-1 transfer form (students transferring from another U.S. institution) 
  • Policy on english language proficiency/english as a second language form 
  • Transcript evaluation 
  • Proof of english language proficiency (TOEFL, IELTS or MELAB) 

C. Review our financial assistance page

D. Attend a graduate open house

Step 2: Applying to graduate school

A. Submit an application

    1. Click the apply now button
    2. Select your program of interest if you do not have an account.
      If you have have an account, log in and continue from step 4. 
    3. Fill out the form completely. Make note of your email and password for future log in. 
    4. Click start an application or apply online
    5. Select your application 
    6. Fill out the application and click submit
    7. Pay the $45 application charge 

B. Submit supplemental items 

After submitting your application, you can begin uploading your required supplemental items. To upload supplemental items, go to the Admission login page, log in using your email and password, and click the Submit supplement items button.

C. Request official transcripts 

You must submit official transcripts from all colleges/universities you have attended. If you are a United States active duty service member or veteran you should also include your military transcript. Submit official transcripts to:

Oakland University 
Graduate Admissions
520 O'Dowd Hall 
586 Pioneer Drive 
Rochester, MI 48309-4482

Please note: If you are an international student, you must submit transcripts from all colleges/universities you have attended. If your last degree was obtained from an international college/university, your transcripts must be evaluated by a professional credential evaluation service. Oakland University will only accept transcript evaluations completed by a current member of NACES. Most students choose World Educational Services or Educational Credential Evaluators. Graduate programs usually require a course-by-course (or detailed) evaluation report rather than the general evaluation report. Since official transcripts are required for your transcript evaluation, we will accept copies of your foreign transcript(s). Official transcript must be sent to the address provided above 

D. Request official test scores

Entrance test scores may be required by your graduate program of interest. The institution code for sending test scores to Oakland University is 1497.

E. Contact your recommenders

During the completion of your application, you will be asked to provide the email addresses of the people who will write your professional recommendations. Contact your recommenders in advance to get their email addresses and let them know that they will receive an email from Oakland University Graduate School requesting that they submit the recommendation online.Only professional recommendations are accepted. Personal recommendations cannot be used for an admission review and your application decision will be delayed. 

F. Complete and upload program supplemental application 

Most graduate programs require a supplemental application in addition to the online application.

Step 3: Check your application & admission status
You may check your status by:
  • Visiting the Admission login page
  • Signing in using your email address and password (created when you submitted your application)
  • On the application overview tab, clicking “Submit Supplemental Items”
  • Your admission status will be at the top of this page

Once Graduate Admissions has received all of the required application materials, completed admission files are shared with the academic program for admission review. 

For academic programs that admit on a rolling basis, the review process typically takes 2-3 weeks from the date the file became "complete." For programs that review applications as a group, the review process begins after the deadline date and can take 4 - 8 weeks before decisions are announced. 

Once an admission decision is made, it will appear at the top of the page where you submitted your supplemental items. You will also receive a letter from the Graduate Admissions office.

After you receive your offer of admission, the next step is to accept your offer by using the Admission Acceptance Form.
Supplemental applications
Many graduate degree programs require a supplemental application as well as the online application. See below for supplemental applications organized by each school and college at OU. Remember, your admission process could be delayed if all required documents are not submitted.

International supplemental documents

Includes the following:

College of arts and sciences
School of business administration
School of engineering and computer science
School of education and human services
School of health sciences
Application charge

There is a non-refundable, $45 USD charge for each new application submitted to the Graduate School at Oakland University. This can be paid online by credit card at the time the application is submitted. Applications will not be processed until associated charges have been paid. 

Each applicant has the opportunity to change the term and/or program for which they plan to begin taking courses without submitting a new application or paying a new application charge. The new starting term must begin within one year of the term on the original application. 

An admitted student can choose to defer their semester of entry up to one year later than originally intended without submitting a new application or paying a new application charge. 

It is the responsibility of each applicant to check program application deadlines before filing an application. Charges paid for applications submitted after required deadlines will not be refunded. 

Application charges are not applied to guest or professional development applications. Applicants who apply to a program using a third-party application system also do not have to pay the charge. 

Questions regarding this policy should be referred to

Application charge waiver

In special circumstances such as graduate program recruitment events, open houses or agreements with universities abroad, an application charge waiver may be offered. Applicants eligible for such waivers will receive a code to submit during the application process. Waiver codes are non-transferable and good for one use only.  

Applicants who are eligible to receive a waiver and fail to take advantage of it will not be eligible to have any paid application charges refunded. 

Request a waiver code

Current Oakland University undergraduates, active military and veterans, enrolled McNair Scholars or students who apply to Oakland as part of an agreement with another university, are eligible for a one-time application charge waiver. Applicants interested in this should complete and submit the application waiver request form. Waiver codes must be obtained and use prior to submitting applications, as no refunds will be issued once an application charge is paid. 

Readmit program

If you were previously admitted to an Oakland University degree program and enrolled for courses but have not taken a course at OU within the last two years, you must reapply for admission.

Readmission is not automatic; deadlines for admission into a given semester may also apply for readmission and additional materials may be required. The catalog current at the time you are readmitted will govern program requirements, policies and procedures.

If you have not attended Oakland University for five years or more, you must submit new application documentation. If you attended another university during this absence, please forward official transcripts to:

Graduate School
O’Dowd Hall, Room 520
586 Pioneer Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4482

Your request will be forwarded to the appropriate academic department for review after all necessary forms are completed and returned.

Frequently asked questions
General questions
  1. How do I apply to a graduate program? 

    Students can apply to a graduate program by filling out and submitting the online application.
  2. How do I check the status of my application?

    Students can check the status of their application and required documents by logging into their account. You must enter your email and password that you created when you first applied.  

  3. What is the application fee for admission? 

    Beginning September 18, 2017 there will be a non-refundable, $45 USD charge for each new application submitted to the Graduate School at Oakland University. Please view the application charge tab for additional information.  

  4. Do I need to take the TOEFL exam? 

    Non-Native English speakers are required to provide proof of English proficiency. Students with foreign academic credentials can provide proof of English proficiency with test scores from TOEFL, IELTS or MELAB. Visit for more information. 

    A TOEFL exemption exists for students from countries where English is both the official language and the language of instruction in higher education. For more information visit our graduate catalog

  5. After you receive my online application with the required documents, how long will it be before I know if I have been admitted? 

    For academic programs that admit on a rolling basis (admission decisions made on a continual basis) the review process typically takes 2-3 weeks from the date the file become "complete." For programs that review applications as a group, the review process begins after the deadline date and can take 4-8 weeks before decisions are announced. Once the academic recommendation is received and a final decision is given, the Graduate School office will notify you of the admission decision. 

  6. How and when do new students register for classes? 

    Web registration is staggered by class standing and earned credit hours. New Students should register after their admission decision has been delivered. Visit the web registration information page at for more information. 

  7. How do I transfer from another university to Oakland University? 

    If you are interested in "transferring" to Oakland University, you must complete the online application and meet the same admission requirements as any other graduate applicant. Upon admission to the Graduate School, your previous graduate coursework will be evaluated by the faculty adviser to determine transfer to Oakland University. 

    Please note: A maximum of nine (9) credits may transfer to the OU graduate program. 

  8. How do I transfer a graduate credit from another university to Oakland University? 

    With the approval of the faculty adviser and the Graduate School, selected credits for prior coursework earned at another accredited U.S. college or university may be transferred to count toward an Oakland University degree. You must have earned graduate level credit in the course according to the institution at which the course was taken. 

    You must complete one semester in your graduate program at Oakland University and be in good academic standing (not on probation or limited standing) before the Transfer Credit Request can be given final approval. You should be prepared to provide the graduate program adviser a catalog copy of the course description from the former institution and/or a course syllabus. Visit our transfer credit policy for more information. The graduate transfer credit request form is available here

  9. May I speak to an academic adviser regarding my graduate program? 

    Academic advising at the graduate level is conducted in the academic departments. Visit and click on the program of your choice. At the top of the page, you will find the contact information for the program coordinator who will answer any questions regarding the program. 

  10. When is the deadline for a graduate admission? 

    Deadlines for admission to a graduate program vary by academic program. Visit and click on the program of your interest. 

  11. How do I obtain a course catalog? 

    The graduate catalog is available online here

  12. As a graduate student, what financial aid might I qualify to receive? 

    Oakland University participates in a variety of financial assistance programs to help students pay for their educational expenses. Assistance can be awarded by Oakland University, Federal Government and by Private sources. Based on your FAFSA application, you may receive need-based loans or college work-study. If you do not have need-based eligibility, you may apply for non-need-based loans or regular student employment. 

    Other financial assistance may be available through a Graduate Assistantship. Graduate Assistantships are offered through the academic departments. Contact your program coordinator for more information. For the full list of Financial Aid options visit

  13. What is my student number? 

    Your student number is your Grizzly ID Number. It is typically listed towards the bottom of the incomplete and admission letters. 

  14. If I am an out-of-state or international student, how can I change my residency rates? 

    You must contact the Registrar's Office and inquire about Residency Reclassification after receiving admission to your graduate program. You can call 248-370-3450 or email

  15. How does an international student receive an I-20? 

    After the admissions office determines that your file is complete and you have been accepted into the program, your file is sent to the International Students and Scholars Office, where your I-20 is prepared and mailed to you along with your official admission letter and other helpful information. 

  16. If I am an international student, do I need to attend an orientation? 

    YES! The office of International Students and Scholars coordinates a special program to meet your needs. They will provide you information regarding your orientation. 

  17. How do I transfer my F-1 visa at my current school to Oakland University? 

    The F-1 Transfer Form is required if you are currently attending a college or university within the United States. Submitting the F-1 Transfer Form does not automatically transfer your SEVIS record. During the application process, the form is only used to confirm if you are currently in status. Once admitted, your International Advisor at your current institution must release your SEVIS record to Oakland University. Contact our International Students and Scholars Office if you have any questions about the SEVIS transfer process at 248-370-3358 or email

  18. Are there additional application requirements for international students? 

    Additional application documents can be found at
Application questions
  1. What are "official" transcripts? I sent a copy of my transcript with my application. Is that sufficient?

    Official transcripts are sent from the registrar's office of the institution(s) you attended directly to our office (Graduate Admissions, 520 O'Dowd Hall, Rochester, MI 48309). Copies issued to students may be used for application review but official transcripts are required to finalize the admission process

  2. Do I need to have my Oakland University transcript sent to Graduate Admissions?

    No. We will obtain your OU record for your file. You do not need to make a formal request.  

  3. If I had my previous college transcripts sent to Oakland University when I was an undergrad, do I need to request them again for graduate school? 

    If you graduated with a bachelor's degree from OU in the past year, we can obtain all transcripts you previously submitted for your undergraduate program. If it has been more than one year, you may need to request the transcripts as your undergraduate record is no longer accessible to Graduate Admissions. 

    Some academic programs need to see the actual grades you received for prerequisite coursework so you may be required to request them again. After we process your application, you will be notified if previous college transcripts are required. 

  4. I won't finish my bachelor's degree until just before the semester to which I am applying. Is that a problem? 

    Most graduate programs accept applications for admission from students who are still completing their bachelor's degree. Any admission decision will be made contingent upon the successful completion of degree. You will be required to submit an official transcript with your degree posted in order to finalize the admission process. Some programs may require that you complete your degree prior to applying for admission. 

  5. What is a transcript evaluation? 

    A transcript evaluation is required for all students with foreign academic credentials. If you studied in an educational system other than within the United States, you are required to furnish a detailed transcript evaluation. The detailed transcript evaluation (course-by-course) includes all the coursework you completed including information on course credit hours and grades. The evaluation must be completed by a NACES member organization. Many students use World Educational Services (WES). 

  6. I am a citizen of another country but have worked in the U.S. for 10 years. Do I need to take the TOEFL? 

    All Non-US citizens are required to provide proof of English proficiency. Time spend working in the US is not used to determine proficiency. Foreign students are encouraged to take the TOEFL, MELAB, or IELTS exam. 

  7. I took the TOEFL 2.5 years ago, do I need to retake the exam? 

    Educational Testing Services only retains test scores for 2 years. Students who complete the TOEFL more than 2 years ago will be required to retest. Student copies of dated scores are not sufficient. You must be able to provide an official exam score report sent directly to Oakland University by ETS. Visit ETS for more information. 

  8. I took the GRE in 1990, can I use those scores? 

    GRE test scores are "good" for 5 years. Educational Testing Services only retains GRE scores for 5 years. Student copies of dated scores are not sufficient. You must be able to provide an official exam score report sent directly to Oakland University by ETS.  

  9. How can I submit non-required documents to be included with my application?  

    You can't. Only the listed required documents will be assigned to your application file. If you submit non-required documents, they will be discarded.