Readmission as a general category of admission refers to students who were previously enrolled in an SIS graduate program, for which they completed some coursework, left the University, and now wish to return to complete a graduate degree. Students seeking readmission to SIS fall into one of two categories:

Expedited Readmission

Students must meet all of the below criteria in order to be eligible for Expedited Readmission:

  • Students who were last in active status (registered or on an approved temporary leave) no more than 3 years prior to the semester for which they are seeking readmission.
  • Students whose previous coursework at AU/SIS was completed no more than 5 years prior to the semester for which they are seeking readmission.
  • Students whose AU cumulative graduate GPA is at or above 3.0.

Reapplication with Prior Record

Students who meet any of the below criteria are ineligible for Expedited Readmission, and are therefore considered as a Reapplication with Prior Record.

  • Students who were last in active status (registered or on an approved temporary leave) more than 3 years prior to the semester for which they are seeking readmission.
  • Students who have previous coursework at AU/SIS that was completed more than 5 years prior to the semester for which they are seeking readmission.
  • Students whose AU cumulative graduate GPA is below 3.0.

Application Deadlines

Fall Entry
July 1
Spring Entry
November 1
Summer Entry
March 1
Applicants applying for summer entry should select Fall as the intended start term on the application form, and email sisgrad@american.edu to request term change.

Estimated timeline if all required materials are received by the deadlines: minimum 4 weeks

Time Limits to Degree and Limitations on Courses

  1. All students who are readmitted at AU are held to the degree requirements in place at the time of their new admission. This means that it is possible that some coursework a student previously completed may not count towards his/her new degree requirements upon readmission, and readmitted students may have to complete additional requirements beyond those that they had at remaining at the time they left the University.
  2. The University considers any courses older than 6 years at the time of graduation to be "expired." If a student seeking to return to SIS would like to be allowed to count “expired” or courses that will “expire” prior to the anticipated date of graduation towards his/her degree upon readmission, he/she must submit a petition to the Program Director along with copies of the syllabi for the courses at the time they were completed and syllabi for the closest equivalent course as currently/most recently offered for comparison.
  3. Students who were previously enrolled in a dual-degree program (e.g. BA/MA or JD/MA) may forfeit upon readmission any credits that were previously being shared between the two degrees.

Academic Standing/Progress

All graduate level coursework completed at AU that is not part of a completed degree is included in a student’s cumulative graduate GPA. This includes courses previously taken in non-degree status, towards a certificate program or towards a non-completed graduate degree, regardless of whether those courses are eligible to count towards a degree upon readmission.

Required Application Materials

  • A completed SIS Online Application Form: Please be sure to indicate in the Additional Information section of the online application, under Previous Enrollment, that you have previously enrolled in graduate level courses at AU and that you are seeking readmission to an SIS graduate program.
  • SIS Readmission Application Cover Page
  • Current resume
  • Statement of Purpose: Your statement should demonstrate your ability to resume and complete a program of academic study and include a tentative plan for completion of your degree requirements. You may choose to include an explanation of why you originally left the program. 
  • Official AU transcript requested through the AU Central Office
  • Official transcripts from any institutions attended after you left AU
  • Completed advising worksheet: Since the University Academic Regulations require that readmitted students be held to the program requirements in place at the time of readmission, you will first need to locate the advising worksheet outlining current requirements for your graduate program. If you no longer have an AU login, please email sisgrad@american.edu to request a copy. Please fill out, to the best of your ability, the current program worksheet with the courses you took while previously at SIS. The worksheet should indicate any course substitution requests you would be making as part of your readmission application. Please note, if you are readmitted the final conditions of your readmission will be decided by the program director and may not match the worksheet that you submit.
  • Application fee
  • *TOEFL/IELTS score may be required of international applicants whose test score submitted with the original application to SIS has expired and who will be requesting a visa to re-enter the US.

Submitting Your Application Materials

Once you have submitted your online application and paid your application fee, you will be directed to the Supplemental Items section where you can upload your resume, statement, transcripts, advising worksheet, and syllabi copies, as applicable.

Important: Your SIS Readmission Application Cover Page, marked-up advising worksheet, and copies of the syllabi must be combined into one file and uploaded into the online application portal as Addendum under Supplemental Items.

Application Deadlines

Fall Entry
June 1
Spring Entry
October 1
Summer Entry
February 1
Applicants applying for summer entry should select Fall as the intended start term on the application form, and email sisgrad@american.edu to request term change.

Estimated timeline if all required materials are received by the deadlines: minimum 8 weeks

*Students with a cumulative GPA below 3.0 must wait at least one year from their last semester in status to apply for readmission. For example, a student with a cumulative GPA below 3.0 who was last registered in spring may not apply for readmission until the following summer at the earliest.

Time Limits to Degree and Limitations on Courses

  1. All students who are readmitted at AU are held to the degree requirements in place at the time of their new admission. This means that it is possible that some coursework a student previously completed may not count towards his/her new degree requirements upon readmission, and readmitted students may have to complete additional requirements beyond those that they had at remaining at the time they left the University.
  2. The University considers any courses older than 6 years at the time of graduation to be "expired." If a student seeking to return to SIS would like to be allowed to count “expired” or courses that will “expire” prior to the anticipated date of graduation towards his/her degree upon readmission, he/she must submit a petition to the Program Director along with copies of the syllabi for the courses at the time they were completed and syllabi for the closest equivalent course as currently/most recently offered for comparison.
  3. The University allows graduate students up to 6 years to complete an MA degree. If applicable, in seeking to return to SIS, students may have to petition for an extension of their time to degree, as any unauthorized leave (including an administrative separation) is counted towards this 6-year time limit.
  4. Students who were previously enrolled in a dual-degree program (e.g. BA/MA or JD/MA) may forfeit upon readmission any credits that were previously being shared between the two degrees.

Academic Standing/Progress

  1. All graduate level coursework completed at AU that is not part of a completed degree is included in a student’s cumulative graduate GPA. This includes courses previously taken in non-degree status, towards a certificate program or towards a non-completed graduate degree, regardless of whether those courses are eligible to count towards a degree upon readmission.
  2. Graduate students must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 to be considered to be in Good Academic Standing. The readmission of any students with an AU cumulative GPA below 3.0 must be reviewed and approved by the Office of Graduate Studies. If approved for readmission, students with a cumulative GPA below 3.0 will be readmitted on academic probation, and the Office of Graduate Studies may set additional conditions.

    Please also note that a cumulative GPA below 3.0 from previous coursework will also impact a student’s federal aid eligibility upon readmission. Students may be asked to successfully complete a SAP appeal before the Office of Financial Aid can approve eligibility.

Required Application Materials

  • A completed SIS Online Application Form: Please be sure to indicate in the Additional Information section of the online application, under Previous Enrollment, that you have previously enrolled in graduate level courses at AU and that you are seeking readmission to an SIS graduate program.
  • SIS Readmission Application Cover Page
  • Current resume
  • Statement of Purpose: Your statement should demonstrate your ability to resume and complete a program of academic study and include a tentative plan for completion of your degree requirements. You may choose to include an explanation of why you originally left the program. Because you are going through the regular application process, you must also include discussions of your relevant qualifications and experiences, your research interests, and your academic and career objectives.
  • Official AU transcript requested through the AU Central Office
  • Official transcripts from any institutions attended after you left AU
  • Completed advising worksheet: Since the University Academic Regulations require that readmitted students be held to the program requirements in place at the time of readmission, you will first need to locate the advising worksheet outlining current requirements for your graduate program. If you no longer have an AU login, please email sisgrad@american.edu to request a copy. Please fill out, to the best of your ability, the current program worksheet with the courses you took while previously at SIS. The worksheet should indicate any course substitution requests you would be making as part of your readmission application. Please note, if you are readmitted the final conditions of your readmission will be decided by the program director and may not match the worksheet that you submit.
  • Copies of the syllabi for any courses taken previously at AU/SIS that you would seek to count towards your degree upon readmission and copies of the syllabi for the closest equivalent courses as currently/most recently offered. You may need to contact faculty or the MA Program Coordinator for assistance in obtaining syllabi.
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Application fee
  • *TOEFL/IELTS score may be required of international applicants whose test score submitted with the original application to SIS has expired AND who will be requesting a visa to re-enter the US.

Submitting Your Application Materials

Once you have submitted your online application and paid your application fee, you will be directed to the Supplemental Items section where you can upload your resume, statement, transcripts, advising worksheet, and syllabi copies, as applicable.

Important: Your SIS Readmission Application Cover Page, marked-up advising worksheet, and copies of the syllabi must be combined into one file and uploaded into the online application portal as Addendum under Supplemental Items.