Graduate education at Penn has a long and distinguished history, beginning with Penn's first Ph.D. program in 1870. The origins of graduate education in the School of Arts and Sciences can be traced to the establishment of the graduate faculty in 1881 and the awarding of the first Ph.D. in 1889.

Today the Graduate Division of Arts and Sciences is one of nine graduate schools. This SAS Graduate Division, along with the Undergraduate College and the Division of Professional and Liberal Education, comprise the School of Arts and Sciences, the largest of the University's twelve schools.

The Graduate Division of the School of Arts and Sciences currently includes over thirty graduate groups and offers the degrees of Master of Arts (A.M.), Master of Science (M.S), Master of Philosophy (M.Phil.), and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.). The Office of the Graduate Division, located at 3401 Walnut Street, Suite 322A, is the administrative unit which oversees such matters as admissions, records, funding and graduation for all Ph.D. and Master's students in the School of Arts and Sciences.

Contact procedures:

  • Students should contact the Office of the Graduate Division of Arts and Sciences directly to submit applications for admission to one of the graduate programs, to turn in dissertations and Master's theses, and to make arrangements for the graduation ceremony.
  • Graduate groups are the best initial contact not only for information about program content, but also for assistance with problems related to funding, grades, fulfillment of degree requirements, leaves, and transfers.
  • If the event of an academic grievance, the Academic Grievance Policy describes the procedures in place for currently enrolled students and former students within 3 years after leaving the University.
  • Students are directed to the Office of Student Financial Services for information on loans and to pay late fees, microfilm and copyright fees for the dissertation.