Jul 25, 2024  
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences: General Information


Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences has been the intellectual heart of the University since SMU was founded in 1911. The college, one of the nation’s premier liberal arts institutions, has earned a reputation for the breadth and depth of its graduate programs and the quality of its learning and research resources. Graduate work at the master’s level has been offered at SMU since the University first opened its doors in 1915 and doctoral work began in 1959.

Degrees Offered

The degrees available through the graduate faculty of Dedman College are the M.A., M.S. and Ph.D.


Admission may be of two types:

  1. Full, without restriction.
  2. Nondegree, when the student needs background courses or desires transferable graduate credit for certification or some other purpose but is not undertaking a degree program. Nondegree admission is selective. Not more than six credit hours of graduate credit earned under nondegree status may be applied toward an advanced degree in Dedman College.

No student is allowed to enroll unless notified of admission by the Moody School of Graduate and Advanced Studies.

Admission Requirements

Applicants holding the bachelor’s degree from an institution of standard collegiate rank, recognized by the accrediting agencies in whose jurisdiction the college is located, may apply for admission to graduate studies. Graduates of colleges not fully recognized will be treated as special cases and required to produce evidence attesting to the quality of their programs. Any student whose bachelor’s degree is not equivalent to the comparable baccalaureate degree from Southern Methodist University may be required to take sufficient additional work to make up the deficiency. All applicants must have adequate subject preparation in the chosen major field, normally an overall grade point average of 3.000 (on a 4.000 scale) and a satisfactory score on the GRE graduate school admission test.

International Students

Applicants must meet the University’s admissions requirements for English language proficiency. Applicants who do not speak English as their native language are required to supply scores on the TOEFL English language proficiency test or the IELTS English competency test. Unless specified otherwise by a program or department, applicants should consult the Office of Admission for more information on the minimum test scores required for admission: www.smu.edu/Admission/Apply/FirstYearInternational/AdmissionRequirements. This requirement is waived for students who have received undergraduate degrees from an English-language institution located in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, or South Africa. The Test of Spoken English or equivalent is required for teaching assistants.

Applicants who have completed studies at and received diplomas or professional titles from institutions outside the United States should ordinarily have completed 16 years of study: 12 years at the elementary and secondary school level and four years at the university level. Eligibility is judged by grades (marks), class obtained or rank achieved in class. Evidence of class placement therefore should be specifically set forth in the official records submitted.

Applicants holding bachelor’s degrees from foreign universities should not assume that these degrees will be automatically accepted in U.S. universities. Applicants who have achieved first or high second class from universities that confer classes based on grades (marks) will be preferred. Applicants holding bachelor’s degrees with honors or master’s degrees have a better chance of being accepted in U.S. universities. Also, decisions will be based on the academic standing of the institutions from which the applicant has graduated. Professional diplomas and higher certificates from technical or vocational schools are normally not considered as equivalent to a bachelor’s degree. Departments have the option of making authentication of transcripts part of the process of offering assistantships to international students.

Application Procedure

The online application for Dedman College graduate degrees can be accessed at gradadmission.smu.edu/apply/.

For more information, students should contact smugrad@smu.edu. A complete application should include the following:

  1. The online application.
  2. An official transcript for all schoolwork after high school.
  3. The application fee of $75 collected online.
  4. Three letters of recommendation submitted online.
  5. GRE graduate school admission test scores submitted electronically.
  6. TOEFL English language proficiency test scores for international applicants.
  7. Writing samples required for English, history and religious studies programs.

Application Deadlines

Fall December 8: Psychology
  December 15: History, Statistics Ph.D., Biostatistics Ph.D.
  January 6: Religious Studies
  January 15: Anthropology, Biology, Chemistry, Theoretical and Computational Chemistry, Earth Sciences, Economics Ph.D., English, Mathematics, Physics
  February 1: Statistics (MASDA)
  May 1: Final deadline (non-priority), Applied Economics M.A.
November 30: Final deadline

Due to the extra time necessary for visa processing, international applicants are advised to have their online application completed at least two months before the final deadlines. Students who apply for departmental assistantships should submit their applications by the priority deadline as noted.

The online application for the Master of Science in the Data Science program can be accessed at apply.datascience.smu.edu. Application deadlines are available at datascience.smu.edu

McNair Scholars Program

SMU encourages McNair Scholars to apply for graduate studies in Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences by waiving their application fee. In addition, 10 tuition fee waivers (five through Dedman College and five through the Lyle School of Engineering) are designated for admitted McNair Scholars applicants. SMU supports the aims of this program – to identify and mentor undergraduates as they prepare for graduate school – and would like to participate in helping students realize their goals. McNair Scholars should identify themselves as such on their application. Questions can be directed to smugrad@smu.edu.

Institute for Recruitment of Teachers Applicants

SMU provides an application fee waiver for IRT applicants and invites applications to Dedman College’s graduate programs. Departments award assistantships based on the merits of the applicant and the limits of the budget.