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Graduate Admissions Application Process

We are pleased you want to apply for admission to a SUNY Cortland graduate program.  We suggest you spend some time reviewing the helpful hints on this page before you begin the application.

Graduate Admissions Application

We use an online application process through an external processing site.  You can complete the application and submit most of the additional documents through the online application.  The primary documents you must submit directly to the Graduate Admissions Office are your official college transcripts.

SUNY Cortland students or graduates will not need to submit transcripts because they are already on file at the college.

Application Fee

You must pay a $65 application fee.  The fee can be paid either online or by check or money order.

The fee is waived for currently enrolled SUNY Cortland students or alumni.

Dates and Deadlines

The deadlines are target dates that we would like to have an application on file.  It allows the academic departments plenty of time to review your application.  If a deadline has passed, you should contact the Graduate Admissions Office to determine if we are still accepting applications.

     Application Deadlines:

     Fall - July 1
     Spring - December 1
     Summer - April 1

Term of Entry

Not all programs begin each semester.  Please review your program choice to determine the proper term of entry.

The Next Steps

1. Review the Admission Criteria

Before you start your application, it's a good idea to review the admission criteria for your program choice.  Some programs have very specific course or certification requirements. Without them, you will not be eligible for admission.

As an example, most of the Master of Science in Education programs require you to have an initial teaching certification prior to the beginning of the program.  In addition, the certification may need to be in a specific area.

2. Gather the names and email addresses of your references.

The online application allows you to input the names of your references and then the system sends them an email.  They are provided with a secure link to your application where they can upload their recommendation and have it attached to your online application.

Information concerning which programs require recommendations can be found by viewing this document.  

3. Prepare your personal goal statement or review the criteria for your program and determine the topic you should be covering in your statement.

4. Make sure you are aware of the following:
     - the degree you will receive
     - the program name
     - the concentration for your program (if any is available)

The online application will ask you for each of these, so it is best to be aware of them.

As an example, if you want to study the non-teacher certification Management of Leisure Services in Recreation, you would want to know the following:

     Degree: Master of Science (M.S.)
     Program Name: Recreation
     Concentration: Management of Leisure Services

5. After completing the application, remember to click on the “submit” button.  We cannot process your application until after you have submitted it to our office and paid the $65 application fee.

** Information concerning how to pay the application fee is available in the application.  Please note that current SUNY Cortland students or alumni do not have to pay the fee.


When you are ready, you can start your application here: SUNY Cortland Graduate Admissions Application