Application Process

There is no general admission at the graduate level at SFU; you must apply directly to the Global Humanities MA Program. Applications are accepted through the Graduate Studies online goGRAD system beginning October 17 for Fall 2024 admissions.

If you are applying to Fall 2024, in order to upload the required documents to complete your application, you will need to pay a non-refundable application fee of $110 CAD (domestic students with Canadian credentials only) or $150 CAD (domestic and international students with international credentials) by credit card (MasterCard or Visa).

Graduate admission

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Note: current SFU graduate students who are applying to the Global Humanities MA Program are not required to pay an application fee.

Learn more about our MA Program

University Requirements

Minimum requirements for Master's Admission

  • Bachelor’s degree or its equivalent from a recognized institution.
  • Cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.33 scale, or 3.33 on a 4.33 scale (B+) based on the last 60 credits of undergraduate courses. All graduate work is also considered.
  • Submitted evidence of the applicant’s ability to undertake advanced studies in the area of interest.
  • Proof of English Language proficiency.

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International and Language Requirements

English is the language of communication at the University and instruction in most programs. Applicants whose primary language is not English must demonstrate command of English sufficient to pursue graduate studies in the chosen field.

International applicants will not be required to complete an English-language test if they have completed a degree at an institution where the language of instruction and examination was in English in a country where English is the primary language.  

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Conditional and Qualifying Admission

In exceptional circumstances, a student may be admitted with lower formal qualifications when there is significant experience relevant to the proposed area of scholarship.

An applicant may, therefore, be offered admission to a graduate program conditional on the completion of certain requirements. Alternatively, qualifying admission may be offered to an applicant who will be working to make up deficiencies in their background before they can begin their graduate work.

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Department Requirements

Criteria for Admission

Undergraduate Degree and Grade point average

Applicants must hold an undergraduate degree with at least a 3.5 grade point average (GPA) in the humanities; or in humanistic disciplines such as classics, history, art history, philosophy, English, and women's studies; or social sciences such as geography, sociology, anthropology, or political science.

Note: applicants must also meet the minimum requirements for admission to an SFU master's program, namely at least a 3.0 GPA or its equivalent.

Competency and available supervision

Applicants must satisfy the Global Humanities Graduate Program Committee (GPC) that they are prepared academically to undertake graduate level work in Global Humanities.

Qualified students will be accepted into the program only if, in the opinion of the GPC, a suitable Senior Supervisor is available. Senior Supervisors are selected only among Global Humanities Faculty, faculty members who have joint appointments in Global Humanities and another department, and Global Humanities Associate Faculty.

Note: acceptance into the program is highly dependent on the suitability of a potential Senior Supervisor. Applicants must, therefore, review the list of available supervisors before applying and indicate an intended Senior Supervisor within their application package.

Application package

Contact information for three referees

Email requests will be sent by the system inviting referees to submit letters of reference electronically.

Sample of scholarly work

Only one sample of applicant's scholarly work will be accepted. A substantial essay is expected. This paper may be either a graduate or undergraduate paper, drawn from  the last two years of any BA program, or a paper written specifically for the purpose of applying to the MA program.

Statement of interest

A written statement describing the applicant's current interests and prospective research if accepted into the Global Humanities MA Program. 

Updated curriculum vitae

Added to the cirriculum vitae (CV) should be a note indicating whether an application for SSHRC (open to Canadian students only) or other external funding has been made.

Post-secondary unofficial transcripts

Your application must include the names of all post-secondary institutions you have attended and you must upload an unofficial transcript for each of those post-secondary institutions. You can upload transcripts inside the Application Form and/or later in the Portal (Checklist Items).

Transcripts must be in English and/or French, or must be fully bilingual including one of these languages (all words and notations must be in French or English, in addition to any other language).

For transcripts not in English or French, an official translation must be supplied. An official translator must include, as part of their translation, a declaration that they received an official, sealed copy of the transcripts that they then proceeded to translate.

Note: applications are submitted through SFU's online application portal (after submission, you will receive an email with instructions on where to upload the required documents).

Application Deadlines

Admissions are for Fall intake only. Applications and all supporting documents must be submitted by January 15 in the year of admission.

Note: admission to the Accelerated Master's Program can occur in any semester. 

See more on Accelerated Master's

Department Admission Procedures

Applications for admission are adjudicated by the Global Humanities Graduate Program Committee (GPC) in consultation with appropriate members of the Department.

When an application is completed, it is reviewed by the GPC. Admission decisions will be based on materials submitted within the application.

Generally speaking, the GPC will make one of the following recommendations:

  1. Applicant is admitted into the program (with or without conditions).
  2. Applicant is admitted as a Qualifying Student. The applicant may be required to take up to 12 hours of additional work in the Global Humanities Undergraduate Program. The GPC will specify these requirements to the incoming student.
  3. Application for admission is rejected.
  4. The GPC can require further information from the applicant and delay its decision.

Note: all applications are subject to final approval by the University’s Senate Graduate Studies Committee, and Graduate Studies will send out all final offer letters.

Applying on goGRAD

Learn how to use and navigate the goGRAD system by watching the following video:


important notes

  • Applicants must meet both the University and Department requirements to be considered for admission.
  • The Global Humanities MA Program will only admit applicants with clearly defined research project proposals that alight with faculty expertise.
  • All applications, including writing samples, must be completed in English.
  • It is not possible to acknowledge receipt of applications; however, you may check your application status online during the application period as this information is updated regularly. 
  • Incomplete files and applications will not be reviewed.