Applying to the Annenberg School for Communication

Complete this FORM to receive a series of emails designed to provide advice for completing the application.

Important dates

  • August: The Annenberg School begins accepting submissions for the following fall term (13 months hence)
  • November 1: GRE and TOEFL exams should be complete (see below for checklist).
  • December 1: Statement of Purpose, CV, Test Scores, Transcripts and Online Application must be submitted and the fee paid
  • December 15: ALL Letters of Recommendation must be received
  • April 1: Last date for the School to notify you about admission decisions

We encourage candidates to complete the online application process as early as possible in the academic year.
Questions? Please contact

Requirements and instructions

Application Checklist

An application is considered complete when we have received all of the following items (incomplete applications will not be reviewed):

Three letters of recommendation are required.

Please have each recommender's contact information (including email address and phone number) ready when you log on to begin your application.

  • Our application system will send your recommenders a request for the recommendation from your e-mail address. Please ask each recommender to submit your letter as a Word or Adobe PDF file using your first and last name as the file name. If any of your recommenders prefers to provide a hard copy letter instead of using email, please request that the document be mailed to our admissions office before the deadline of December 15
  • Mail should be directed to:
    The Annenberg School for Communication Admissions Office
    University of Pennsylvania
    3620 Walnut Street
    Philadelphia, PA, 19104-6220
  • Your recommenders should be three persons familiar with your abilities and scholarly work, preferably academics whenever possible
  • Please do not provide more than three letters of recommendation

Statement of purpose

The statement of purpose should discuss your potential research area or topic with the Annenberg School for Communication faculty or research centers. Please detail how your academic and professional background, interests, and preparation in the social sciences, the humanities and other studies support your research topic. The statement should also address the question of what career objectives an Annenberg degree would help you realize. The statement should be double spaced and must not exceed 1,000 words.

  • The file should be a Word or Adobe pdf file and titled: “Statement” with the addition of your first and last name. You will attach it to the online application

CV or Resume is required

A CV or Resume should include references to major research projects, thesis and other scholarly papers and accomplishments.

  • The file should be a Word or Adobe pdf file and titled: “CV” with the addition of your first and last name. You will attach it to the online application

Graduate Record Examination Aptitude (GRE)

Applicants are required to have taken the Graduate Record Examination Aptitude Test (GRE) before they can be considered for admission. This is a University of Pennsylvania requirement which we cannot waive. Your file will not be reviewed without GRE scores.

  • GRE scores are only valid and reportable for five years from the test date and the test may be taken internationally, please see the GRE website for test taking locations in your area
  • The ETS code for the Annenberg School at Penn is (2023) on the request form
  • Please arrange for us to receive an official report of your general GRE test scores before the application deadline of December 1
  • Applicants should allow at least six weeks for the GRE scores to be processed and received. Information about the GRE may be obtained from the Educational Testing Service, P.O. Box 6000, Princeton, NJ 08541-6000,

Tests for Non-Native Speakers of English

Applicants for whom English is a second language are required to take either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Testing System (IELTS). The receipt of a baccalaureate or master's degree from a U.S. college or university does not exempt the applicant from submitting official test scores.

  • The TOEFL is administered by the Educational testing Service (ETS). We will accept only official score reports provided directly by ETS. Scores are valid for two years. You must request that an official report of your scores be sent to The Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania
  • Please use the ETS Code for the Annenberg School at Penn (2023) on the request form
  • For TOEFL test dates, locations and other registration information, please contact: TOEFL, P. O. Box 6151, Princeton, NJ 08541- 6151.ADD or visit
  • The IELTS is jointly managed by University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations (Cambridge ESOL), British Council and IDP Education Australia: IELTS Australia. For information about testing sites in your area please visit the official website at:


Applicants may scan and attach student copies of academic transcripts to the application. If you are currently taking classes you will not need to send us an updated transcript once your grades are submitted.
One official transcript of all undergraduate and graduate work will be required if you are offered admission to the program. An offer of admission will be contingent upon verification of student records with official transcripts from your institutions. Only graduates of a college or university will be admitted to the Annenberg School graduate program.

Application fee in the amount of $70 is required

  • Payment may be made online via credit card, or via mail (address above) by check or money order (payable to the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania)
  • International applicants applying from abroad who are not using credit cards should provide a $70 check drawn on a U.S. bank or international postal money order
  • Please let us know if your situation makes it impossible to meet this requirement and we will consider underwriting the fee from a special fund set up by the Ambassadors Annenberg for this purpose
  • Application fee checks not honored by the bank will be assessed an additional $25 returned check charge. A replacement money order or certified check for $95 ($70 application fee and $25 returned check charge) will be required to prevent interruption in the application's processing

Writing sample is optional

You can submit whatever you feel best displays your scholarly writing ability. The sample must not exceed 10 pages, double spaced, and may be an excerpt from a larger work. Please upload the writing sample using the online application or e-mail it to