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How to Apply?

Application Checklist

  • A master's degree with minimum GPA 3.5 (4 Scale)
  • Overall GPA 3.3 (4 Scale) in undergraduate education
  • GRE Required 
  • TOEFL /IELTS Required  (If Applicable)

Students may apply to ASPECT on the basis of actual completion of an M.A degree or equivalent (e.g., M.S, M.Arch., M.B.A., or J.D.) or of the promise that an M.A. degree or equivalent will be obtained prior to entering the ASPECT Ph.D. program. Under the assumption that students accepted into the ASPECT program with a Master's degree or equivalent, either from Virginia Tech or elsewhere, have received credit for 30 credit hours, they will then undertake a minimum of 60 semester hours of further study, leading to the defense of a Ph.D.

Ordinarily, applicants must have a minimum 3.5 grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) for all courses already taken as a graduate student. A minimum 3.3 grade point average is expected from their undergraduate education.

Transcripts

You will need to supply a scanned copy of your college transcripts with your online application, then arrange for an official copy to be sent to us after you receive an offer of admission. Official and current transcripts are of all undergraduate and graduate coursework completed prior to applying to ASPECT (this is in addition to the set to be sent directly to the Graduate School). You are welcome to submit any additional information with application material that would be useful in evaluation of your application.

 

Letters of Recommendation

Three letters of recommendation are required for a Ph.D. in the Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought. You can include the email addresses of references/recommedations in your online application, or have them send paper copies directly to the department.

Writing Sample

You will need to send a sample of written research to enable the Graduate Admissions Committee to evaluate your potential for research in ASPECT. The writing sample may be a seminar paper, up to two chapters from a thesis, a conference paper, or a publication. You can upload it with the graduate school online application form.

Graduate School Testing Requirements

Official GRE is required for a Ph.D. in the Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought. Please have the testing agency send official scores to Virginia Tech Graduate School, code 5859.

Letter of Interest and Curriculum Vitae

You will need to supply a letter of interest (3-4 pages) statement with a mature sense of research interests explaining how the ASPECT curriculum, program faculty, and its mentoring structures will contribute to your research and career goal. This letter is required by the Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought along with your latest Curriculum Vitae.

Please address the following questions in the letter of interest:

  • Why do you want to undertake graduate work?
  • Why do you qualify to pursue a graduate degree at Virginia Tech?
  • What do you expect to derive from your program of study?
  • If you have a concentration or area of interest in mind, briefly outline your interests in this area.
  • What do you expect to contribute as a student and subsequently as a member of the profession?
  • If you have not previously indicated in your application the names of faculty members you are interested in working with, please include that information in this statement.

Applying as an International Student

International students might be required to submit TOEFL/IELTS scores, immigration documents, and other additional materials with their application.

Additional Information/Supporting Material

Application Fees

Degree-seeking students must include a $75 fee with their application, though check to see if you qualify for a waiver or reduced fee. All application fees are non-refundable.

Application Fee Waivers

Veterans and other applicants are eligible for waivers of the application fee. This form includes the eligibility requirements.

 

To apply to the graduate program, students must submit the Virginia Tech Graduate School online application. 

Submission Deadline for Domestic Application

*Fall: February 1

*ASPECT accepts applications ONLY for Fall terms. We do not accept students in Spring, Summer I or Summer II terms.

Submission Deadlines for International Application

*Fall: February 1

*ASPECT accepts applications ONLY for Fall terms. We do not accept students in Spring, Summer I or Summer II terms.

Include a scanned copy of your college transcripts with your online application, then arrange for an official copy to be sent to us after you receive an offer of admission.

The official transcripts showing degree conferral should be sent directly from your institution(s) to Graduate Admissions:
Virginia Tech Graduate Admissions
120 Graduate Life Center at Donaldson Brown (Mail Code 0325)
155 Otey Street NW
Blacksburg, Virginia 24061

 Send official scores to Virginia Tech Graduate School, code 5859.

Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought has a limited number of graduate assistantships and fellowships available for students applying for full time study on the Blacksburg Campus. Entering students can apply for such funding as part of their admissions application. There is no separate application required.

The Graduate School sends an official offer of admission to applicants upon the recommendation of the department faculty. Admitted applicants offered graduate assistantships at Virginia Tech are not required to commit to the assistantship offer until April 15. See the assistantships page for more details.

Graduate Admissions

Tamara Sutphin, Program Support Technician
202 Major Williams (0192)
540-231-0698
tsutphin@vt.edu

Application Questions

Tamara Sutphin, Program Support Technician
202 Major Williams (0192)
540-231-0698
tsutphin@vt.edu

Program Inquiries

François Debrix, Director (ASPECT)
Professor of Political Science
202 Major Williams (0192)
540-231-0694
aspect@vt.edu