How to Apply

Begin your journey today. Start your application!

The Interdisciplinary Program in Neuroscience (IPN) requires an online application to be submitted to the Biomedical Graduate Education through the Georgetown Graduate School of Arts and Sciences application portal.

Our graduate program is devoted to providing a supportive environment for a diverse and competitive student community. We are happy to guide you through the application process and answer your questions about research, opportunities, student life and more.

Contact the IPN staff to learn more about the program, and take the virtual tour of some of our facilities.

Application Requirements

Applicants are to submit all required credentials and supporting documentation no later than the application deadlines listed below. Applications are reviewed on a rolling, space-available basis. You can begin the application process at any time and save your progress until you are ready to submit your completed application.

Contact the IPN staff to learn more about our program and application process.

Application Checklist

Application Timeline

  • December 1st: Application Deadline for Summer Admission
  • January – March: Interviews
  • Late March: Final Decision
  • April 15th: Applicant must notify the program of their decision
  • July 1st: Program Starts

*We highly encourage students with international credentials to have their transcripts evaluated by WES (new window)or another NACES (new window) credential evaluation service. For WES evaluation, please type in “Georgetown University” for the institution/company. For School/Division, select “Biomedical Graduate Education” as the recipient.

**To apply for an application fee waiver upon completion of your application, please contact

GU/NIH Partnership Program

Be mentored by experts from both research institutions.


IPN Admissions FAQ

Go to the IPN Admissions FAQ page for additional admission and application information.

IPN Admissions FAQ

Financial Support

View full tuition coverage, competitive stipend support, and health insurance benefits.

Ph.D. Funding

Additional Information

Transcripts are required from every institution you have earned credits and grades, including both degree and non-degree coursework. This allows the admissions committee to have a more complete picture of your academic preparation for graduate study.

You must upload electronic or scanned copies of your transcripts (as detailed below) into the application portal for review by the admissions committee; do not order official transcripts to be sent directly to us from your institution(s) until you receive an official offer of admission.

An acceptable transcript upload is a copy of an official transcript produced by the institution. This includes:

  • Scanned copies of paper transcripts issued by the institution.
  • Electronic transcripts issued by the institution (not a download from your institution’s web portal).

Transcript formats we do not accept include the following:

  • We do not accept screenshots or photos.
  • We do not accept downloads of the “student’s view” from your institution’s website.

Samples of Acceptable vs. Unacceptable Transcripts for Applications Submission:

Acceptable Transcript
Acceptable Transcript
Unacceptable Transcript
Unacceptable Transcript

For Transcripts Not in English:
These documents must be accompanied by an English language version provided by the academic institution. If your institution does not provide English language copies, applicants are responsible for providing a certified or notarized translation along with a copy of the original transcripts. Applicants may upload an evaluation from a credential evaluation service. This must include course and grade information. If not included in the evaluation, the transcript from the institution must be included as well. Both the evaluation and original transcript should be submitted in the application as one document.

NOTE: Applicants who are offered admission will be required at that time to submit official transcripts for verification prior to enrolling.

For additional questions, please visit Admissions FAQ.

IPN Supplemental Essay is a maximum of one page. Please answer the following prompt: Please tell us about an incident in your research where you experienced failure. Include what you did about it and what you learned from the experience. Please upload the supplemental essay to the Neuroscience Supplemental Information section of the Online Application.

Guidelines for Preparing an Academic Statement of Purpose / Personal Statement for your application to our PhD program:

This statement is one of the most critical parts of your graduate school application. To dispel any mystery of what should be covered, or leave to chance that you’ll miss key points, we outline below what is generally addressed in the statements of our most competitive applicants (in no particular order), followed by some general advice. 

  • The factors (personal/professional) that motivate you to apply for a PhD in Neuroscience (IPN). Why a PhD?  Why this field?
  • Your academic preparation for this degree program (coursework at bachelors and/or graduate level). If there are any areas of your transcript that might be a cause for concern by the admissions committee, such as low grades in coursework relevant to the degree, be sure to address them clearly.
  • Your research background. What research have you done, either independently or as an assistant? What do you find attractive about research as a profession?
  • Your reasons for selecting the IPN (faculty research interests, for example).
  • Your long-term career goals (we know people have a range of goals, and that’s OK!)
  • Any additional information that you would like the committee to consider as they review your application.  We understand that many different factors (socioeconomic status, personal/familial challenges, racial/ethnic/cultural background, gender/gender identity, being the first in one’s family to attend college and/or to pursue STEM graduate education, historical/structural/institutional obstacles, etc) impact the path to a PhD in the sciences. We strive to promote equity and inclusion in our program, recognizing the many ways that we can each enrich the academic and scholarly community through our unique backgrounds and circumstances.

General Advice:

  • When talking about faculty research areas, it is first advisable to look and see what they have published recently (e.g., do a PubMed search). 
  • Make sure you can identify at least two or three faculty members with whom you would be interested in doing research. If you can’t, a program (at Georgetown, or anywhere else) is likely not the right fit for you. 
  • Proofread. This one sounds obvious, but we receive applications each year with grammatical errors, typographic errors, faculty names misspelled, etc. and this comes across as unpolished and unprofessional. Be sure to have someone else (a fresh set of eyes) read your statement to check for errors.  Remember, you are going to be doing research for 4-6 years in our labs – we want to know that you are careful and detail-oriented.

The IPN is committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment that reflects the diversity of the global neuroscience community. Applicants are encouraged to submit an optional statement (approx. 500 words) on how your scientific, academic, and personal experiences have shaped you and you will contribute to our diverse community. If you are interested in being considered for the Georgetown University Initiative for Maximizing Student Development (IMSD) (new window) Program, please use this section to discuss in a few sentences why you are interested in the IMSD program and what you hope to both gain from and contribute to the program. 

TOEFL: Georgetown University Code is 5244. The minimum TOEFL score for admission is 80 (Internet-based test) and 550 (paper test).

IELTS: Select “Georgetown University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.” The minimum IELTS score for admission is 7.0.

All applicants are required to demonstrate a level of proficiency in the English language sufficient to meet the admission requirement of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Proficiency can be demonstrated by the receipt of a bachelor’s or advanced degree from an accredited institution of higher education in the United States or from a university where English is the primary language of instruction (please note that applicants receiving degrees at universities in U.S. territories, such as Puerto Rico, are required to submit the TOEFL or IELTS unless the primary language of instruction at the institution is English).

Each year, we receive applications for admission from many more competitive applicants than we are able to accept. Because our program is largely funded by several NIH training grants which are restricted to U.S. citizens and permanent residents, we give priority to domestic applicants and international applicants with fellowships from their home country (see below), before giving consideration to our pool of international applicants that require full financial support from our program. In the past several years, we have offered acceptance with full financial support to only an exceptional few international applicants (less than one out of 30), with preference given to applicants who have graduated from a university in the U.S. or Canada, and who are able to attend an interview session at Georgetown.

The cost of attending the Georgetown Interdisciplinary Program in Neuroscience for international students, including tuition, fees, and reasonable living expenses, is found here. If an outstanding international student is the recipient of a fellowship award from their home country or other agency that covers at least 60% of these expenses for the first two years in the program, it is often possible for our program to make the necessary arrangements to cover the remaining expenses. We strongly encourage all international students to apply for such fellowships and we will be pleased to offer qualified applicants whatever support and endorsement is needed during the fellowship application process.

Our program participates in special partnerships with El Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACYT) to jointly fund Mexican students enrolled in our doctoral program, and with El Ministerio de Planificación (MIDEPLAN), the national planning agency of the Chilean government, to jointly fund Chilean students enrolled in our doctoral program.