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Admissions and Eligibility

The Master of Liberal Arts program (MLA) is designed for individuals from a variety of backgrounds and requires no specific prerequisite courses. However, for your admission to the program, it is necessary that you have previous coursework in the liberal arts and evidence of preparedness for graduate-level work, such as independent research and writing experience.

Applicants must hold either a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited US institution. International students should make sure that their degree is the equivalent of a four-year degree in the US. Successful applicants to the Master of Liberal Arts program must possess at least a 3.0 grade point average in their undergraduate studies.

Standardized tests such as the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) are not generally required when applying for the Master of Liberal Arts. However, you may choose to submit standardized test scores in support of your application. Most international applicants are required to demonstrate English proficiency via Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores.

Application and deadlines

The first step toward earning your Master of Liberal Arts degree at Penn is completing the online application. 

You may apply to begin Master of Liberal Arts studies during the fall, spring or summer terms. Your application portfolio, including all transcripts, must be received by the following deadlines:

Spring 2015 admission
Application Deadline: November 1, 2014 — Apply now! 

Summer 2015 admission
Application deadline: April 1, 2015
Application opening in November 2014

Fall 2015 admission
Application deadline: July 1, 2015
Application opening in November 2014

International Student Deadlines:

Spring 2015 admission
Application deadline: October 1, 2014

Summer 2015 admission
Application deadline: March 1, 2015
Application opening in November 2014

Fall 2015 admission
Application deadline: July 1, 2015
Application opening in November 2014

Applications for the Master of Liberal Arts program are accepted on a rolling basis. Candidates under serious consideration are invited to interview with a member of the Admissions Committee on campus or remotely. Admissions decisions are generally made within two weeks of the interview.

Walk-In Wednesday

Walk-In Wednesday

Members of the MLA program team are here to answer your questions face-to-face on the first Wednesday of each month.

Walk Right In >

Individualized Curriculum

Courses and Curriculum

With Penn's MLA program, you design a curriculum centering on a particular theme that interests you.

See Courses and Curriculum >

Application Deadline: November 1st

Apply Now

Get your application started!

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