Skip to content Skip to navigation

Applying to Stanford

Stanford’s Office of Graduate Admissions begins accepting graduate program applications in late-September for students wishing to be considered for admission to the economics PhD program the following September.  The application deadline for the Economics PhD is 1 December 2020 (9pm Pacific Time).  

Application forms cannot be downloaded, and materials must be submitted online. Applicants must submit the following materials:
1. A statement of purpose (not exceeding two pages in length)
3. Official transcripts from every college and university you have attended for at least one year as a full-time student.  Please upload scanned (unofficial) copies of each transcript by the requested deadline as part of your online application.  In addition, please also arrange to have official transcripts sent as described here.  If using an electronic certified transcript service, please use this email address for delivery:
4. For applicants whose first language is not English (with some exceptions as clarified here), TOEFL scores are required. Stanford's ETS institutional code for the submission of scores is 4704.  Educational Testing Service (ETS) is providing home tests now in order to meet the needs of those impacted by the health crisis. We will accept these test results for the TOEFL exam. Please see the ETS website for more information.  
  • Stanford will temporarily accept the TOEFL ITP Plus test with the Vericant interview for applicants from Mainland China who are unable to sit for the TOEFL iBT due to the pandemic situation. This exception is requested only for the 2020-2021 application cycle. Applicants may be asked to re-test at a later time once the Stanford TOEFL iBT becomes available, or applicants may be asked to re-test through the Stanford Language Center.  

  • To meet the needs of students who are unable to take the TOEFL iBT® test at a test center due to public health concerns, ETS is temporarily offering the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition.

5. Applicants for the 2020-21 application cycle are not required to submit a GRE score.

6. Stanford’s Economics Department also requires that students complete a coursework spreadsheet as part of the online application.  The reason we require this is that we receive and review transcripts from many schools, and it is extremely helpful for us to review applicants’ economics-related coursework in a standardized format.  Stanford's course catalog will likely be helpful in determining which Stanford courses are most similar to those you have taken.   If you encounter any issues completing the online spreadsheet, you may complete this version (course_preparation_for_stanford_econ_phd.2020-21.xlsx), save the spreadsheet as a PDF, and upload the PDF as a writing sample within your application.
Additional materials that become available after the deadline (e.g. updated transcripts) should be submitted to:
Department of Economics
Graduate Admissions Committee
579 Jane Stanford Way
Stanford University
Stanford, CA 94305-6072
The non-refundable application fee is $125, but please note that fee waivers are available for individuals needing assistance with application fees
Applicants to the Department of Economics should also consider applying to the Knight-Hennessy Scholars program, which annually awards up to 100 high-achieving students with full funding to pursue any graduate degree at Stanford, including joint- and dual-degrees.  In order to be considered, you must apply to the Knight-Hennessy program by October 14, 2020  (1pm Pacific Time). 
Stanford is committed to providing a welcoming and supportive environment for all students.  Stanford’s Office of the Vice Provost for Graduate Education provides a number of resources about life at Stanford, including diversity initiatives.  See also this statement of support for undocumented students.