Application Documentation

Application Document Checklist Application Requirements for Academic Documents

Important Notes

  • All items must be received by the application deadline including reference letters. Therefore please ensure that your application for admission is submitted at least two weeks prior to the deadline.
  • Normally applications will not be reviewed for possible admission until all (100%) required items are uploaded to the online application and submitted by the application deadline.

1. Application

All applicants must apply online by going to the Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies (GPS) Online Application portal.

2. Transcripts

You are required to upload the most recent copies to your online application; refer to Application Requirements for Academic Documents above. If you have difficulty acquiring electronic transcripts please contact us via Do not send official hard-copy documents until after an admission offer has been extended.

Failure to list and provide complete transcript from all institutions you attended on the application may be considered an intentional omission and will lead to the cancellation of your application for admission or withdrawal of your offer of admission.

Please note: If you have completed a degree and/or certificate that does not provide transcripts, placing the 'certificate' as a transcript on the online application is not acceptable. In place of the transcript requirement for these programs, you will need to have the institution provide a letter confirming that you completed the degree/certificate and that there are no transcripts provided for the program. The letter will need to be attached to the online application in place of the 'transcript' for that program and then submitted (original document) to the University. Hard-copy transcripts can be submitted to the Faculty Office after an admission offer has been extended.

3. Referees

You must provide email addresses of your three referees (references) and the system will automatically send your referees an electronic form to complete after your application fee has been paid (this may take up to 24 hours after payment). Once they complete and submit their form you will be notified by email. The system will keep sending reminder emails to your referees until we receive their form.

Please remind your referees that they must submit the form and upload a reference letter that is on letterhead and signed by them by the stated application deadline. The online application will provide directions to the referee on how to complete the reference form.

Referee Selection Consideration: As your referees will be asked about your academic abilities it is important to select individuals who can accurately assess this aspect of our work. Ideally your referees should be academic staff (e.g., instructors in prior degree programs) who know the requirements necessary for successful completion of a graduate program. Please see the Application Document Checklist (above) for further information.

4. Curriculum Vitae (CV)/Resume

Attach a copy of your CV/Resume to the online application form or complete the CV form available on the online application form. Please see the Application Document Checklist (link above) for further information.

5. Distinguished Life Experience Essay

If applicable please refer to the Application Document Checklist (link above) to learn more.

6. Statement of Intent

Review the Consideration of the Statement of Intent information below and the Application Document Checklist (link above) for more information on what is required in the Statement of Intent.

Consideration of the Statement of Intent

Avoid providing a narrative on your CV and/or non-academic background information unless it links directly to your research topic. To make an assessment, the admissions committee requires information on your research interests and will be looking for alignment with program specialization areas and Faculty research areas.

Doctoral Program Application

If you are applying to the doctoral program, state whether you completed your master's degree in the thesis or course-based route. If you completed a thesis-based masters briefly describe:

  • Your master's program research (problem, methodology, topic, results)
  • Whether the results were published
  • How your master's research relates to your proposed doctoral study
  • How your thesis has prepared you for your doctoral research

Master's Program Application

If you are applying to the master's program, please state whether your undergraduate program integrated research-based activities. If you were engaged in undergraduate research activities, provide:

  • A description of your role and activities in the undergraduate research project
  • How the undergraduate research experience has prepared you for your master's program

7. English Language Proficiency Requirement

This applies to two different applicant groups:

  • Applicants who completed a degree or an academic equivalent from an institution and/or country that does not teach in English.
  • Applicants who might have completed a degree or an academic equivalent in English but neither the institution and/or the country are listed as exempted from this requirement by our Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research at the University of Alberta.

GPS List of Exemptions  Entrance Requirement on English Language Proficiency Exams

No exceptions are granted on this requirement. Please see the Application Document Checklist (above) for further information.

8. Confirmation of Potential Research Supervisor (Doctoral)

Before you list a potential faculty member as your supervisor on your application form, please contact the faculty member to confirm the possibility of supervision. Please note, if successful in obtaining a supervisor, this does not guarantee admission.

9. Writing Sample (Doctoral Only)

Doctoral Applicants applying to Adult Community and Higher Education, Indigenous Peoples Education, or Social Justice and International Studies in Education need to submit on the online application form their Master's thesis (or a project/capping exercise document) for review.