William and Mary

American Studies Graduate Program Application Instructions

To assist you in the application process, and to ensure that your materials reach us on time, we have established the following guidelines; these supersede all others found on the web. Please read them carefully before you submit your application.

  1. Please note that our application deadline for fall admission is JANUARY 1 of the year that you intend to enroll. We must receive all application materials before or on that date for your application to be considered. We recommend that you take advantage of our on-line application process. Postmarks for that date will be honored. There is no guarantee that a late application will be reviewed.

  2. Besides the completed application form if not submitted  online, we require the following supporting materials:
    • Official transcripts from all institutions of higher learning that you have attended.
    • Three letters of recommendation.
    • A writing sample of 20 pages or less (a course paper, a thesis chapter, etc.).
    • An official GRE report.  Your GRE scores must not be older than five years.
    • A response to additional questions:
      (a) In the interest of learning more about your intellectual aspirations, the American Studies Admissions Committee asks that you write a response to the following question. This short essay (250 words or less) must be submitted for your application to be considered complete. If you had another year of education to carry forward any intellectual project from your undergraduate, work, or life experiences, what would that project be?

      (b) Foreign language proficiency is required for the Ph.D. degree. If you are applying for the Ph.D. or the MA/Ph.D. track, the Admissions Committee asks that you specify your current competency in one or more foreign languages (fluency, speaking, reading, coursework, etc.).
  3. Your completed application form if not submitted online should be sent with a check for the non-refundable application fee payable to the College of William and Mary to:
    American Studies Program
    Program Administrator
    College of William and Mary
    P.O. Box 8795
    Williamsburg, VA 23187-8795
  4. OR via Federal Express or UPS at:

    American Studies Program
    112 North Boundary Street Apt. 5
    Williamsburg, VA 23185

  5. All supporting materials should be sent in one package (excluding GRE scores, but including letters of recommendation if not being submitted on-line) along with the application form and the $45.00 fee.

    Please have recommenders put their letters in sealed envelopes, sign across the seal, and send the letters to you. Official transcripts should also be sent directly to you in a sealed envelope. Please understand, any slides, cassettes, videotapes, or bound papers that you may send cannot be returned.

  6. You must request that ETS send an official GRE report directly to us. Our institution code is 5115, and our program/department code is 2206. Their address and telephone number is:
    Graduate Record Examination, Educational Testing Services
    P.O. Box 6000
    Princeton, NJ 08541-6000
    Telephone number: 1-609-771-7670
    Web address:

    If you should have any questions about the application process, please do not hesitate to call us at (757) 221-1275 or e-mail us at We look forward to hearing from you.