Admissions & Aid: Application Requirements

Which transcripts do I need to submit?

Applicants must submit a transcript for each institution from which they have received postsecondary academic credit. This includes community colleges and study abroad programs.

How will I know if my application is complete?

Applications are not considered fully complete until all materials have been received and verified by our office. Please note that, at any time within the admissions process, our office may request additional materials to be submitted to complete your application.

How do I submit my transcript?


Applicants are required to upload unofficial transcripts from each postsecondary institution that they have attended in the academic history section of the application. All transcripts should show courses completed, grades received, duration of study, and degree or diploma received, if applicable.

Please keep in mind that you will need to provide official transcripts (and translations, if applicable) for verification, should you be admitted. HDS reserves the right to withdraw an offer of admission if there is a discrepancy between an applicant’s uploaded...

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May I request a fee waiver?

If you are experiencing an economic hardship that prevents you from paying the $25 application fee, you may request a fee waiver. You can access this form from the HDS online application for admission and will be inside the application instructions. If you request a fee waiver, please do not submit your application until you have submitted the waiver request and received a response from the Admissions Office. If you have any questions, or would like guidance on...

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How will I know if you have received my application materials?


Once your application has been submitted, you will be able log back into the online application status page and track our office’s receipt of your supporting documents and recommendations. Due to the high volume of applications we receive each year, please know that it may take several days for us to process your materials and update your online application.

Please note, we are unable to accept any hard copy materials sent by postal mail.


What does the Admissions Committee look for in a statement of purpose?

The Statement of Purpose is an integral part of the application and is evaluated with great care by the Admissions Committee. It should include your general background (education, work experience, volunteer work, and/or relevant personal experience) and how this background has prepared you for graduate theological study, specifically at HDS. It should also include your vocational or career objectives and why you believe your desired program at HDS will aid you in achieving those objectives.

Why do you request my social security number with my application?

Social security numbers are required in order to verify applicants’ identities and to correlate with information provided as part of the financial aid process. Our confidential receipt of applicants’ social security numbers is in compliance with federal reporting requirements. Please review these security-related advisories for additional information.

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What is the minimum GPA requirement?

We do not have a minimum GPA (grade point average).  The admissions committee reviews each application holistically and each component of the application is carefully reviewed with the knowledge that successful HDS students possess strengths in different areas. The components of the application are intended to allow you to demonstrate, in a variety of ways, your academic preparation to engage in graduate-level theological study at Harvard Divinity School.