Application process

The application portal will open for the Fall 2022 intake on October 18, 2021.
Application deadline: January 21, 2022 | Supporting document deadline: January 28, 2022

Applicants must normally have a bachelor’s degree with a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.4 from a recognized university, preferably in an arts or social sciences discipline.

Please note: regional concentrations have been suspended indefinitely.

Application Procedure

Incomplete and late applications will not be considered.

1. Read the instructions on the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (GPS) website and complete the online application form.

Note: We do not receive your online application until you have paid the application fee. Payment by credit card (MasterCard or Visa) must be made within seven days of submitting the online application form or the application will expire. Graduate Application Fee (non-refundable): $90 CAN (students with Canadian transcripts) or $125 CAN (students with international transcripts).

2. Upload the following supporting documents before the deadline using the Application Checklist/Document Upload link in the online application system. You will be able to upload your supporting documents AFTER the application fee has been processed.

  • Curriculum Vitae (two pages maximum).
  • A one-page letter of intent that explains why you wish to pursue the M.A. in International Studies.
  • A one-page statement of research interest including the topic(s) and geographical region(s) as well as the intended track (thesis or essays).
  • An academic writing sample.
  • Contact information of three referees, at least two of which must be from university faculty members. Your referees will receive an e-mail link via SFU's online application system. Letters uploaded to the system must be on official university letterhead and must contain your referees' contact information.
  • A copy of transcripts from all institutions attended. Do not mail a hard copy of your transcript at this time. (You will be required to send official transcripts by mail only if admitted.)   

It is not possible to acknowledge receipt of applications and supporting documents.  

INTERNATIONAL APPLICANTS: please note additional admission requirements.

Proof of English Proficiency

All applicants whose first language is not English and whose undergraduate degrees come from institutions where English is not the primary language of instruction are required to submit English language test scores. Scores are only valid for two years from the date of examination. Normally, we would require the following minimum scores:

  • IELTS (International English Language Testing System) with a minimum score of 7.5 on each Academic Module (listening, speaking, writing, reading); or
  • TOEFL IBT (Test of English as a Foreign Language, internet based test) with an overall score of 102 or better with a minimum score of 25 in each of the four components (listening, speaking, writing, reading); or
  • TOEFL PBT (Test of English as a Foreign Language, paper based test) with a minimum score of 625 including a minimum essay score of 5.5.

TOEFL and IELTS test takers should request electronic submission of scores directly from the test centre to SFU (Institution Code: 0999).



International students pay the same fees as domestic students. Please note that we are a full-time fee research program.

Important: All fees are subject to change, subject to provincial legislation, and subject to SFU Board of Governors approval.