International Applicants: How to Apply

Our graduate programs are built upon a diversity of perspectives. Qualified students from various cultures and countries are encouraged to apply.

International applicants who have been awarded a 4-year bachelor’s degree from an institution of higher education in a country outside of the U.S. or Canada will need to use WES (World Education Services). Please take special note that Bologna Accord degrees or 3-year bachelor’s degrees from India are not deemed as comparable to a 4-year U.S. bachelor’s degree at SJSU (see Step 5 in the instructions below).

You must use the International Application if you belong to the following categories:

(1) Applicants who are applying for an F-1 or J-1 visa and currently reside abroad.

(2) Applicants who currently hold an F-1 or J-1 visa and currently reside in the U.S.

International Applicants must inform Graduate Admissions and Program Evaluations of their current visa status by indicating the status at the time of application. Please note that International applicants do not qualify for resident tuition and will be subject to non-resident tuition.

U.S. citizens, permanent residents, refugees, H4, and H1 visa holders must use the Domestic Applicants link to apply. 


Admissions Eligibility – International Applicants

Graduate Admission Requirements: To be considered for admission into SJSU, graduate applicants must meet the minimum CSU Eligibility requirements and SJSU program requirements set forth by our individual departments.  SJSU minimum requirements for graduate school eligibility are:

The completion of a 4-year bachelor’s degree from a recognized, accredited, and approved institution from a foreign country, or the completion of a U.S. bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution.

Hold a GPA of at least 2.5 (from the 0.0-4.0 U.S. grading scale) in the last degree completed, or a GPA of 2.5 in the last two years of full time study.

Good academic standing at the last institution attended.

Satisfactorily meet the minimum test scores for the English Language Proficiency Exam.   


Apply to SJSU

STEP 1 - Investigate: Investigate your intended graduate program to find out if they require a separate department application, letters of recommendation, graduate tests, or have specific department procedures. All supplemental department materials should be sent directly to your intended department.

STEP 2 - Deadlines: Look at our deadlines to know when you have to submit your online application and document requirements. It is important to take special note of the “document deadline” in order to ensure timely submission of required documents.  Due to the lengthy visa process for students, our international deadlines are much shorter than our domestic deadlines. Please plan accordingly when applying to SJSU.

STEP 3 - Apply Online:  Apply online to San Jose State University. This step must be done regardless of what extra steps you have to do with your specific graduate program. Our online application is done through CSU Mentor.  You may only apply to one program per application term.

STEP 4 – Submit $55.00 Application Processing Fee: A credit card payment is accepted only during the time you submit the online CSU Mentor application.  You may alternatively send a check, money order, or cashier’s check drawn on U.S. dollars from a U.S. bank.  Cash is not accepted.

The fee is non-refundable, even if your application is withdrawn or denied.

The fee is only used for the admission term indicated on the submitted application.

Fee waivers are not available for graduate applicants at this time.

STEP 5 – Submit WES evaluation OR official U.S./Canada Transcripts to SJSU:

International School Work and Degrees: GAPE requires that all international applicants provide a WES (World Education Services) evaluation for any educational work  taken outside of the U.S. & Canada. Mark sheets/transcripts/degree certificates must be sent directly to WES for evaluation. SJSU must receive the academic record and the evaluation directly from WES. A complete WES evaluation is required. GAPE will also review applications of those in their final year of study. For these applicants, the WES Evaluation must contain a minimum of 7 semesters of graded work.

  • SJSU prefers the WES document-by document evaluations (Basic or ICAP) but will also accept course-by-course evaluations (Basic or ICAP).
  • View detailed, illustrated instructions on how to send documents through WES.  
  • After you submit your documents to WES, please DO NOT send a copy of your documents to our office as we will receive the completed evaluation directly from WES. Documents sent directly to SJSU will not be accommodated.
  • International Evaluators use WES to validate the authenticity of degrees and transcripts submitted by applicants. International Evaluators extract an equivalent GPA from the university transcripts and do not primarily use the GPA calculations provided by WES. Applications will be referred or denied in accordance with CSU eligibility standards currently in practice. 
  • Applicants who are admitted but reviewed with only 7 semesters of evaluated work will be required to submit final semester mark sheets/transcripts and the degree certificate to WES for a revised evaluation. The final documents must be sent to SJSU by the deadline posted in the applicant’s MySJSU account. Failure to comply with these requirements will result in a “document hold” that will prevent future registration into classes. Document holds are removed when documents are received and verified as meeting all requirements.
  • NOTE: Those earning degrees in the Bologna system must submit a completed evaluation which includes ALL academic work and proof of degree conferral. Bologna degrees are carefully reviewed and therefore must be complete. Applicants earning a Bologna degree will not be considered if a partial WES evaluation is submitted.
  • NOTE: SJSU does NOT deem the 3-year bachelor’s degree from India as comparable to a 4-year U.S. bachelor’s degree and therefore will not meet the CSU eligibility requirements.

STEP 6 – Submit Test Scores [SJSU Institution Code: 4687]

English Language Proficiency: SJSU does not accept “English-medium of instruction” as a substitute for an English-language proficiency exam such as TOEFL, IELTS, or the Pearson’s Test of English.  Letters from applicants or institutions will NOT be accepted.  Requests to waive this requirement will only be considered under the following circumstances:        

  • Received a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree from an accredited U.S. institution
  • Received a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree from an accredited institution for which English is the official and primary language of that country
  • Completed 3 years of full time coursework in an accredited U.S. institution

Other Test Scores

  • Please review our Test Requirements page to see if your program of interest requires the GRE or GMAT.

STEP 7 – Submit Declaration of Finance Form

In addition to the online application, all international applicants MUST submit a completed, signed, and dated Declaration of Finance form by the posted document deadline.  Please email in pdf format to

STEP 8 – Submit Bank Letter or Bank Statement

In addition to the Declaration of Finance, all international applicants MUST submit financial support documents by the posted document deadline. Please email these documents in pdf format to

Federal immigration regulations require that all international students provide evidence of adequate funds to meet the financial obligations of enrollment at a U.S. university. The combined U.S. dollar amount from you or your sponsor(s) must equal or exceed the minimum listed for the applied term.  Currently, applicants must list at least $35,000 U.S. dollars per year (The College of Business and Special Session programs may have different amounts.  Please check program websites for fee information). Please add $5000 for each requested dependent. 

Returning applicants that have previously applied must submit a new declaration of finance form with new bank statements.

Requirements for all financial support documents:

  • Current date [note:  new forms must be submitted each application term].
  • Account holder’s name, along with type of account with overall monetary amount.
  • Documents on official letterhead with signature and stamp of administrative official.

The types of funds that are accepted include:

Bank Letter or Statement: A letter from your bank, or a copy of your bank statement, showing the amount of funds in your account is required. If you have multiple types of accounts with a bank (i.e. Fixed Deposits, Savings, and Checking), please note that the bank statement must clearly separate the amount for each account.  The letter/statement must have been issued within the previous six months and must be reported in U.S. dollars. If you have a sponsor, the name listed on the bank letter or statement must match your sponsor’s name.  

 Acceptable accounts include:

  • Checking or savings account
  • Fixed/time deposits with a maturity date listed and date prior to the start of the term [i.e. -Fall 2016  begins on August 24, 2016] or a statement on that funds may be withdrawn at any time without penalty
  • Letter of solvency
  • Approved educational loan

Funds from government or private agencies - Student must attach a verification letter on letterhead from the government or agency stating the specific amount that will be received. This includes scholarships. 

STEP 9 – Submit a Copy of your Current Passport

The name entered on your SJSU application will be the same name that will be used on your I-20 (if you are offered admission).  There are no exceptions to this policy at this time.  Please take precaution in entering your Passport Name into the SJSU application to ensure that your first name and family name are recorded correctly.  You may need to update your passport for the purposes of matching what is submitted in your SJSU application.

STEP 10 – Submit a Copy of your Current VISA

All international applicants that currently reside in the U.S. on a visa, must email a copy of their current VISA to  The VISA copy must be received by the posted document deadline. 

Illustration of Graduate Application Process (International) 


If Admitted 


I-20 Process 

Initial I-20:  For admitted students who are applying for an F-1 VISA and currently reside abroad.

If you are admitted, you will receive an admission notice in your MySJSU account that prompts you to sign up for Express Mail within 72 hours.  Express Mail is necessary for the tracking of your admission packet, which includes your I-20 and admission letter. 

If you do not sign up for Express Mail within the 72 hours, you may jeopardize your ability to gain a VISA interview in time to attend SJSU because admission packets sent by regular overseas mail have taken as long as two months to reach students.

Express Mail Details:  Express Mail is a service that allows you to track your admission packet and typically mails within 5-7 days.   You must pay for Express Mail (approximately $50), which can be paid for with a credit card (Visa, MasterCard, or Discover cards only). To request Express Mail of your documents, visit For more information on Express Mail, contact

If you do not complete Express Mail registration within the 72 hours, your admission packet, including I-20, will be sent through regular overseas mail. Packets sent through regular overseas mail cannot be tracked and will take up to two months to receive.

If you decide that you prefer Express Mail after we have issued your I-20 in your admission packet, we will not be able to send another I-20 until 30 days has passed.

Transfer-In I-20: For admitted students who have a current and active F-1 VISA. 

If you are admitted, you will receive an admission notice in your MySJSU account.

Our office will process your transfer-in I-20 within 2-3 business days once both steps below have been complete:

Once these items have been processed, you will receive an email with I-20 delivery options.

For more information on what to expect as an international student at SJSU visit the International Programs and Services Office 

Tip: International students must show documentation to Graduate Admissions and Program Evaluations of their current VISA. This is the status at the time of the application and will assist in issuing the correct paperwork at the time of admission. 



If you are offered admission to the University you will receive an official letter of admission.  You will be able to use your MySJSU account to view assigned registration appointment dates for course registration.  Course registration and paying of student account bills are all done through your MySJSU account.  You may also want to contact your department to find out if they have any special orientation near the start of the semester.

We look forward to welcoming a new graduate class to our campus. Good Luck!