General FAQs

Where should I send hardcopy materials?

Georgetown University
Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
Graduate Admissions, Box 571004
3520 Prospect Street, NW, Room CB-207
Attn: MSFS Application (FSER)
Washington, DC 20057-1004

Do I need to have a specific academic background to apply?

You do not need a specific academic degree or background to apply to MSFS. Since our core curriculum includes courses in economics, history, and political science, we recommend that you have an interest in this type of coursework but we welcome diversity in our program! Read our previous class profiles to find out more about the backgrounds of students who have entered the program.

What are the typical demographics of your class?

The average age of enrolling MSFS students is 26, and most students have four years of work experience prior to matriculation. Generally, international students make up 25 to 30 percent of our cohort.

A small number of our students (less than 10 percent) are admitted directly from undergraduate institutions. These students are expected to have exceptionally strong academic backgrounds, study abroad experience, language proficiency, and extra-curricular experience such as internships, volunteer work, or campus leadership activities.

Economics Prerequisites

What courses are required before applying?

We require that all incoming students complete Principles of Microeconomics and Principles of Macroeconomics before starting the MSFS program. You must achieve a grade of “B-” or higher in these required courses.

Can I apply if I have not completed the required courses?

If you have not yet completed Principles of Microeconomics and Principles of Macroeconomics courses, you should detail your plans for meeting this requirement on the Supplemental Data Sheet in your application. (See our How to Apply page for more information about application materials.) If you are accepted to the program, you will be required to submit transcripts from one or both courses. Most students take these at a local community college or online. The courses must be taken at an accredited college/university.

If you have not completed these courses by the August 1 deadline, you will be required to enroll in these courses at Georgetown during your first semester, at your own expense. Additionally, you will be restricted from enrolling in certain MSFS core courses (i.e. International Trade and/or International Finance) until you have met the prerequisite, which may delay your anticipated graduation date.

Do any other economics courses count toward this prerequisite?

No, the courses must be Principles of Microeconomics and Principles of Macroeconomics.

Courses combining both microeconomics and macroeconomics which are fewer than six credits only fulfill the macroeconomics prerequisite. If you hold only a combined course with fewer than six credits, you will need to take an additional three-credit microeconomics course.

Political economy courses do not count toward the economics requirement.

Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate courses taken in high school do not count toward the requirement unless higher level economics courses have been taken at the college level.

Language Proficiency

Is there a language proficiency requirement for admission?

To graduate from the program, all MSFS students must pass a language proficiency exam. If you do not pass this exam during the program, you cannot receive the MSFS degree. In order to be prepared for this graduation requirement, students should have strong language skills before beginning the program.

To be competitive for admission, you should demonstrate a high degree of proficiency in two languages: English and a second modern, spoken language.

If you are a non-native speaker of English, you will be required to provide proof of proficiency in English as a basic admission requirement. For non-native English speakers, it is possible to test in English as your second language for the language proficiency requirement. You may also choose a different language that is not your native tongue.

Standardized Tests

What standardized tests are required?

Applicants who do not have an undergraduate or advanced degree from an accredited institution where English is the language of instruction must submit the TOEFL (minimum internet-based score 100) or IELTS (minimum score 7.0).

All applicants are encouraged to submit either the GRE or GMAT as part of their application, though it is not required for admission.

Dual Degree applicants for the Georgetown MSFS/JD program may submit the LSAT for their MSFS application in lieu of the GRE or GMAT.


Do I need transcripts from every school I have attended?

We require official transcripts from every institution from which you have earned or will earn a degree (undergraduate, graduate, and/or associates). If you take any prerequisite courses between applying and matriculating, we must receive official transcripts showing that you have completed these requirements by the time of your matriculation at Georgetown. Unofficial non-degree coursework transcripts should be uploaded directly to the online application.

Statement of Purpose

What should I include in my Statement of Purpose?

When making decisions about admissions, the Admissions Committee strongly considers an applicant’s personal attributes and values.  Your 500-700 word Statement of Purpose is an opportunity for you to present personal information that is not included in your resume, transcripts, or other application materials. We do not have a particular prompt or requirements for the Statement of Purpose — it is up to you to decide what information to share with us. We also use Statements of Purpose to evaluate writing ability so we recommend that you carefully check your grammar and spelling.

Note: While the online application asks for a 500-word statement, MSFS accepts statements of up to 700 words.

Letters of Recommendation

How many letters of recommendation do you require?

We require two letters of recommendation. We will accept three letters of recommendation.

Who should write my letters of recommendation and what should they include?

There are no specific requirements for these letters. The recommenders should be able to describe your ability to handle the MSFS workload and excel in our program. We suggest you provide one academic reference and at least one professional reference.

Dual Degrees

What kinds of dual degrees do you offer?

Visit our dual degree page for a full listing of program offerings. All dual degree programs are offered in combination with other programs at Georgetown University. 

Further questions?

You can contact our Admissions team at or +1 (202) 687-5763. Our Connect with MSFS page details several ways you can engage with our program before applying, including through online video chats and campus visits.