PhD Program

International Applicants
Financial Aid
Admissions Events

International Applicants

An international applicant is anyone who is not a US citizen or US permanent resident at the time of application to Chicago Booth.

You must submit academic records (transcripts or mark sheets) with grading scales for each year of college or university education completed or in progress, as well as copies of degrees awarded. Records must provide information on the content and quality of your performance, courses taken each year, and grades received. Class rank should be noted whenever possible.

You must submit both original language records and official English translations. All translations must be literal and complete versions of the original records, and must be prepared or verified by someone whose position requires a knowledge of both English and the original language. All supporting materials must also be in English.

For the purposes of the application, you will submit all required academic records as described above by uploading them to the online application system. Please note that should you be made an offer of admission, you will be required to submit official academic records and official copies of degrees awarded (and official English translations where applicable). Photocopies and facsimiles of the documents are not acceptable.


Not all international degrees are comparable to the US bachelor’s degree. The University of Chicago Booth School of Business reserves the right to review the academic records of all international applicants and to determine whether the academic credentials presented from a non-US institution are comparable to the US bachelor’s degree. Applicants holding only professional diplomas or higher certificates or members of professional associations such as the Institute of Chartered Accountants are not qualified to apply for admission unless they also hold recognized university degrees.

Fluency in English

International applicants for admission to the University of Chicago Booth School of Business PhD Program must meet the English-language requirements outlined below. The University of Chicago accepts either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) for the purpose of meeting the English-language requirement.

The TOEFL uses different scoring scales depending upon which version of the test is used. For applicants who take the internet-based TOEFL (iBT), the minimum required score on the TOEFL is 104 overall, with sub scores of 26 each. For those who take the computerized exam, applicants must score a minimum of 25 in each section, with a total score of at least 250. For the paper-based version, the minimum score is 60 in each section, with a total of at least 600. Applicants who score below these minimums cannot be considered for admission and should retake the test before submitting an application. The PhD Program institution code for the TOEFL is 1819.

Minimum required scores in the IELTS are an overall score of 7, with sub scores of 7 each. Applicants who score below these minimums cannot be considered for admission and should retake the test before submitting an application.

Please note: TOEFL or IELTS Score Reports are valid for two years and scores will be considered expired if the test was taken more than two years prior to Chicago Booth PhD Program’s application deadline. For admission for Autumn 2020, scores from tests taken prior to December 15, 2017 are considered expired. If your score has expired, you must retake the examination and submit the official scores before the application deadline. We will not accept photocopies of expired scores while awaiting the official results of a recent examination. Scores must be sent directly from TOEFL or IELTS.

TOEFL/IELTS Waiver Policies

The English-language requirement may be waived if, within the last five years prior to the deadline for this application, the applicant completed a degree or was enrolled in a degree-seeking program for at least one year of full-time, non-ESL study in the US, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Guyana, the Caribbean countries of: Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, or English medium universities in Canada or South Africa*.
*NOTE: This applies only to English medium universities in Canada or South Africa. Study in English medium universities in other countries does not qualify for a waiver.

Waivers apply to students from the countries listed above only. Students who are natives of or who have studied in English in other countries (for example, India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Singapore, etc.) are not exempt from the English language requirement.  

Waivers only apply to those who have studied full time in one of the countries listed on the waiver list above.  Time spent as a visiting student at a qualifying institution does not make you eligible for a waiver. Employment in an English-speaking country does not make you eligible for a waiver.

NOTE: The above listed circumstances are the ONLY circumstances that qualify for a waiver. Students who studied English (or at other English-medium schools) in countries not specified above, students who studied less than 1 full-time year in one of the countries specified above, and/or students that have worked in the U.S. or other English-speaking countries are NOT eligible for a waiver.

There is no need to apply for the waiver. Provided an applicant meets the above criteria, the TOEFL/IELTS requirement will be automatically waived upon review of the relevant transcripts.


Visa eligibility forms will only be issued to admitted students. Depending on an admitted applicant’s nationality and particular circumstances, the University of Chicago issues either the I-20 or the DS-2019 visa eligibility forms. When presented to a US consul, these forms enable a student to obtain an F-1 or J-1 visa, respectively. Verification of financial support is required before a visa eligibility form is issued. A financial resource statement will be sent upon admittance.