College of Education Sitemap
Skip to Main Content

Department of Teacher Education

Ph.D. in Curriculum, Instruction and Teacher Education

For International Students

In addition to the procedures outlined in CITE application process for U.S. citizens/residents, international students also need to submit the following materials as part of their application:

If you are offered admission into the CITE program, you must complete an Financial Proof/Affidavit of Support form. The statement, which is found on the Grad School's Application page, must originate from your source of support and must be an original statement with stamp and original signature. You will need to upload both your Affidavit of Support form and bank statement(s) into the Graduate Education Application Portal.

University Application Payment

Your application fee should be paid by credit card. If you pay by check or money order, it should be payable to Michigan State University and attached to the application form. Checks drawn outside the U.S. must be payable in U.S. funds through a U.S. bank. Checks drawn on foreign banks that do not have a correspondent U.S. bank may be returned. Applicants should not send cash or international coupons. Shortly after you have submitted your paid application to the graduate school, you will be sent an email inviting you to complete and upload the supplemental application materials through the Graduate Education Application Portal. You will need the ID number of your application and the password you created for your graduate application to enter the portal.


Applicants for whom English is not their primary language are required to submit TOEFL scores (or IELTS, TEFI or MELT). The test must be taken within two years of the start date of your program. The university’s minimum acceptable score is 550 (paper version) or 80 (Internet-based version), with all sub-scores above 52 (paper version) or 19 (Internet-based version). The Writing section minimum score is 22 (Internet-based version). The official test results must be electronically submitted from the testing facility to the MSU office of Admissions to be considered official scores. In order to be considered for admission, all international students must have official TOEFL scores reported to the university. To expedite an application review, applicants may upload copies of the results to the application portal.


English Language Proficiency Waiver


If the student has completed a degree program in an English speaking country, he or she may request a waiver of the TOEFL requirement. The waiver request should be a written request to waive the TOEFL requirement and a detailed explanation of why the applicant believes the waiver should be granted. This waiver request should then be uploaded to the application portal. Once the program admissions committee is convinced of the student’s English language skills based on past program completion and other evidence, it will ask the university to waive the requirement. This waiver is usually granted, upon the departmental request. However, if it is not granted, then the TOEFL scores will be required before a decision can be processed.




Send an official (sealed) transcript of each degree granting institution to the program secretary. These transcripts should have English translation and include a notation of the degree earned, area of study in which the degree was earned and the date conferred. If your transcripts do not include the above, please also submit an official original or certified copy of the diploma with degree earned and date. All Chinese applicants must provide university sealed transcripts with English translation, original or certified copies of degree certificates, and CDGDC verification of both transcripts and degree certificates.


For international students who wish to serve as teaching assistants, the English-language campus minimum proficiency score is 50 on the SPEAK test. Individuals who need to take this test should go in person to A714 Wells Hall for information. The schedule for the SPEAK test is on the English Language Center website. Just as important as English language proficiency for all TAs, however, is familiarity with American K-12 education. For some entering international students, as well as other students who have not taught in K-12 settings, this will mean that they should include in their first year of studies some opportunities in K-12 schools in order to become more familiar with the American institution of schooling from the perspective of a professional serving such settings.

Sources of Information for International Students

If you have questions about how to fill out the international application, please contact the MSU Office of Admissions.

For questions about visa types and requirements, travel to the U.S., finances for international students and support services, please contact the Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS).

For questions about housing, please contact the University Housing and Food Services Division.

Summary of Application Process

  • Fill out the university application form
  • Statement of financial proof
  • TOEFL scores
  • GRE scores
  • Transcripts
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Goal Statement
  • Sample(s) of Writing
  • Three (3) Reference letters

Any additional information you wish to submit should also be uploaded to the application portal.