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Applying to Stanford

December 19, 2019 UPDATE:  Stanford’s Economics Department is admitting this year’s PhD applicants in two waves of roughly equal sizes.  For our department to participate in the Knight-Hennessy Scholars program – a prestigious Stanford scholarship to which some PhD applicants also apply – we identify some admits very early.  Remaining applicants are admitted during a second, normal wave of admissions.  These two waves create a rolling admissions process that is compatible with Stanford’s Knight-Hennessy timeline.  The decision date for all admitted students (both waves) remains April 15.


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 3 December 2019 (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.
5. Stanford’s Economics Department requires students to submit GRE general test scores to Stanford’s ETS institutional code, 4704. 
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_spreadsheet_for_stanford_econ_phd.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 10 October 2019 (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.