Start your journey with Ph.D. Admissions

The Ph.D. admissions team enrolls approximately five new students in our Ph.D. program each year with the expectation that it will take four or five years to complete the degree. All admitted Ph.D. students will be provided with a funding offer at the time of admission. Students in other degree programs at UW may be interested in augmenting their degrees with our Ph.D. Concentration in Public Policy and Management.

Application Deadline: December 15

Find out about the Ph.D. degree requirementscurrent Ph.D. students and most by contacting the Evans School Student Services office at or 206.543.4900.

Application Materials

Gather your required University of Washington (UW) Graduate School - Evans School application materials:

  • Application fee of $85 (U.S.).

  • Resume, including:

    • Relevant academic, professional, volunteer, or military experience

    • Academic and/or professional honors, prizes, or scholarships

    • Leadership positions and professional affiliations

  • Writing sample of a sole-authored piece of work showing your analytic and writing capacity. The sample should be cut down to 30 pages or fewer if taken from a longer document.

  • Statement of purpose, describing in 750 words or less:

    • Yourself and your experience in the context of your decision to purse the Ph.D. in public policy and management

    • Your expectations of the Ph.D. program in furthering your career objectives

    • Your research interests and how you see them matching the strengths of the Evans School

    • Your academic background, research, professional, and other experiences as well as any other factors relevant to your interest in public policy and management

  • Unofficial transcripts from each college or university you have attended. Upon acceptance into the program, students will be asked to send an official copy of their transcript to the UW Graduate School office for degree verification purposes.

    • If you only have a bachelor’s degree, your application will be considered; however, we believe that students with master’s degrees in public policy, public administration, economics, sociology, political science, or related disciplines are, in general, better prepared for our Ph.D. program.

    • Admitted students will be required to complete a college-level course in calculus before enrolling in the Ph.D. program. The application asks about your prior calculus coursework. If you haven't previously taken calculus, you can briefly detail (in two sentences or fewer) your plan to do so if admitted into the program. 

  • Three letters of recommendation, to be submitted electronically by your references after you complete the online application. At least two of the letters should be from faculty familiar with your academic work, and all three should address your capacity for pursuing an advanced research degree. You may designate up to five recommenders in the application system, but only three letters are required for your application to be complete. 

  • Official GRE scores need to be requested from ETS. GMAT scores are also accepted in place of the GRE, but the GRE is preferred. Have the scores sent to the University of Washington as the institution (code 4854).

  • TOEFL scores, or other demonstration of English language proficiency, for applicants whose native language is not English. See the full list of ways to establish English language proficiency here.

    • As of May 1, 2017, the Evans School no longer accepts IELTS scores as a measure of English language proficiency. Please contact the admissions team at or 206-543-4900 if you have any questions. 

  • A research proposal is not required for the application, but we ask applicants review faculty members' bios and identify 2-3 whose research aligns with your interests. You may include a 1 or 2 sentence explanation for each faculty member about why you have selected them.

Application Instructions

Complete the UW Graduate School online application for the Evans School. During this process, you will be asked to identify which Evans School program you are applying to. Select Public Policy & Governance - Daniel J. Evans School - Ph.D. (Public Policy & Management) as your degree option. You will then be directed to the appropriate Evans School portion of the application to submit the majority of your required application materials.