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Graduate Admissions

Thank you for your interest in Stanford Classics!  For admission into the graduate program you should have a strong background in Classics or a related field. Depending on your particular interests, this might include Comparative Literature, History, Political Science, Archaeology, Anthropology or Philosophy. Above all, we are looking for applicants who understand the opportunities of our program, have clear intellectual goals, and who are a great fit for Stanford Classics.

Admission Deadline

Deadline for Autumn 2020 admission:  Tuesday, December 3, 2019.*

Applications for the Ph.D. and the M.A. are due the same day and require the same materials.

*All applicants are encouraged to apply to the Knight-Hennessy Scholars program. Applications for this program are due October 10, 2019, 1:00pm PT.

The selection of PhD students admitted to the Department of Classics is based on an individualized, holistic review of each application, including (but not limited to) the applicant’s academic record, the letters of recommendation, the statement of purpose, personal qualities and characteristics, and past accomplishments. Admissions decisions for academic year 2020-21 will be communicated by the end of January 2020.

Application Requirements Checklist

  • Application form: Completed online through the University Graduate Admissions website

  • Non-refundable fee of $125. For information on eligibility for fee waivers please refer to Graduate Application Fee Waiver

  • Statement of Purpose: reasons for applying, preparation, specific study and research interests, future career plans, and any other information about yourself as a scholar and future faculty.

  • Letters of Recommendation:  Three letters of recommendation are required from faculty members or others who are qualified to evaluate academic work and teaching potential. Recommenders submit their letters through the online system by the application deadline.

  • Official Transcripts:  Transcripts are required from all prior college level schools attended for at least one year.  A scanned copy of the unofficial transcript is submitted as part of the online application. Additionally, please mail one official copy of each transcript to the department. We will also accept official electronic transcripts, sent directly to from your degree granting institution. For more information on transcripts please refer to Graduate Admissions

  • Writing sample: an academic paper in your field of interest, 15-25 pages in length, double-spaced and single-sided.

  • Curriculum Vitae (C.V.): academic resume of your qualifications.  Included in this C.V. should be a list of your language qualifications.  Ancient languages should be demonstrated by a list of works read in the original.  Modern languages may be indicated using the labels "Beginner", "Intermediate", "Advanced" and "Fluent", along with the number of years studied.

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): required for all international applicants (whose primary language is not English) sent via ETS.  Not required if your most recent academic program is in an institution where English is the primary language of scholarship and instruction.  Please check the Exam Requirements for International Applicants to confirm applicability.

  • Official transcripts should be mailed to: 

    Department of Classics, ATTN: Admissions
    450 Jane Stanford Way
    Building 110, Room 107
    Stanford, CA 94305-2145

Inquiries about the admissions process and the application can be sent to You may also check our F.A.Q. for common answers.

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Knight-Hennessy Scholars 

Each year the Knight-Hennessy Scholars program will identify a group of 100 high-achieving students from around the world with demonstrated leadership and civic commitment to receive up to 3 years of funding to pursue a wide-ranging graduate education at Stanford, with the goal of developing a new generation of global leaders. To be considered for this program, you must submit the Knight-Hennessy Scholars program application by October 10, 2019 and submit your Classics graduate program application by December 3, 2019. Click here to learn more about the program!