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Gender and Public Policy

The Admissions Committee favors candidates with both proven academic ability and relevant work experience. All applicants must submit GRE or GMAT scores.

Academic Background

Because SIPA’s core curriculum includes economics, statistics, and financial management, the Admissions Committee looks for evidence of a candidate's ability to undertake quantitative coursework at the graduate level.

There are no specific prerequisites for admission, but the Committee prefers applicants who have completed introductory courses in macro- and microeconomics. Broadly speaking, courses in economics, statistics, and mathematics will bolster an applicant’s candidacy and provide a helpful foundation for study here.

To complete the (optional) higher-level economics sequence requires familiarity with calculus, and even the lower-level sequence assumes an understanding of algebra. Applicants lacking any quantitative background are therefore encouraged to consider enrolling in high-level mathematics courses above all else, and if possible a statistics course as well.

To pursue careers in certain fields — development economics, quantitative policy analysis, trade, finance, environmental economics, energy policy, and international banking — requires an even higher level of preparation before enrolling at SIPA — namely, completion of calculus and an intermediate micro- and macroeconomic sequence at the undergraduate or graduate level. Students without an economics background who are interested in pursuing these fields are strongly encouraged to make up this deficiency before applying to SIPA.

No particular undergraduate major is required, but those looking ahead to possible study at SIPA can take courses in international relations, political science, foreign languages, and history. Applicants whose fields of study were far from the international relations or public administration fields are advised to address with extra care in their essay why they now wish to “change gears” and study at SIPA.