Master of Liberal Arts & Science

Application and Admission

Diverse and energetic students are invited to apply to this rigorous, interdisciplinary program. The application process consists of the following elements:

  1. An on-line application to Graduate School and the Master of Liberal Arts & Science Program.

    To begin a Spring 2015 application, please go to:
  2. Curriculum vitae or current resume
  3. Transcripts from all colleges attended
  4. Two letters of recommendation
  5. Statement of Purpose
  6. Interview with the Associate Dean and Director

Candidates for admission to the MLAS degree program must submit a formal application for graduate study at Vanderbilt (see the above link to the application page). There is no application fee for the on-line application. Applicants can also visit the following page for additional details about the application process: However, given the distinctive nature of the MLAS program, not every item indicated on the Graduate School application is required, and a few special steps should be taken to complete the application.

Since proficiency in a second language is not required, you may enter either "Not Specified/Other" in the box; or you may enter your language and proficiency, if appropriate. It is important to enter something in the language box for your application to be complete.

A copy of your curriculum vita or a current resume should be attached to the on-line application.

Official transcripts, indicating a completed course of study equivalent to that required for a bachelor's degree at an accredited institution, are required before an admissions decision can be made. If more than one college or university was attended on the way toward the baccalaureate degree, then transcripts from those institutions must also be submitted. A minimum B average in all undergraduate work is required, though the admissions committee does allow that significant life and/or work achievements may compensate for a lower grade point average. Official transcripts should be mailed directly to the Office of the University Registrar at the following address:

Office of the University Registrar
Vanderbilt University
110 21st Avenue South
Suite 110
Nashville, Tennessee 37240

Some institutions provide electronic delivery of official transcripts. These submissions may be made to

Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores are not required. In the on-line application, you may enter in all boxes "N/A" -- Not Applicable. If you have GRE scores, feel free to enter them. Again, it is important to enter something in the GRE boxes for your application to be complete.

Two letters of recommendation from individuals who are familiar with you as a professional and who can speak to your qualifications are also required.

The Statement of Purpose, which can be appended to the on-line application, is a 250-word essay that (1) describes your intellectual interests; (2) addresses how you would add to the MLAS classroom experience; and (3) speaks to your expectations of the program.

After receipt of all required application materials – which may be submitted on-line or by mail – all prospective students are interviewed by the director of the program. The applicant may schedule an interview with the director any time after the application materials have been submitted.

Applications are reviewed on a rolling admissions basis throughout the year.


Jenny Atkinson
Jenny Atkinson
Director of The Whale Museum
“After a number of years pursuing a career, the MLAS is the perfect way to renew, recharge and reconnect: renew your educational path through a wide variety of intellectually stimulating courses; recharge your batteries by participating in discussions led by leading authorities; and reconnect with others equally passionate about continuous learning.”
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