Frequently Asked Questions
The following are frequently asked questions from applicants and accepted students.
- Is there a deadline for admission?
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis, and are reviewed and decision as they are received. The admissions committee prefers that students apply by July 31 for fall admission.
- Can I transfer credits from a previous graduate program? How many?
Students may transfer up to 9 semester hours of graduate work from a previous institution. Faculty will evaluate course equivalencies on a case-by-case basis.
- How long does the program take to complete?
Full-time students (9 credits per semester) may complete the program in two years. As course offerings allow, it is possible for those studying full-time to graduate in 18 months.
- When are classes offered?
Each class meets one evening per week (Monday through Thursday) from 6:30-8:20 p.m. Courses are offered throughout the calendar year, including fall, spring, and summer sessions. Some electives may be offered at other times and online.
- Can I take a course before I apply?
Prior to enrolling in the program, students may apply on a non-matriculated basis. This is an abbreviated application process that allows student to take up to 12 credits to be used for personal or professional development, as prerequisites for advanced study, or be applied toward a degree in the future. Please click here to download the application for non-matriculated graduate enrollment. Prospective students may also check to see course offerings each semester by clicking here and searching for courses under “Public Relations--PR”. All non-matriculated students register through the Office of Graduate Admissions under the advisement of the program director.
- How are students connected with internship sites?
MA in Public Relations students have an option of taking an internship through one on one advisement with their program advisor. Hofstra’s public relations program has a long-standing history with a wide variety of internship sites in New York City and Long Island, and it is quite possible for these employers to offer full-time positions to interns post-graduation. Students’ interests and long-term career goals guide final placement decisions.
- I work full-time. Do I have to do an internship to graduate?
If students' daytime schedules do not give them the flexibility for an internship, they have the option of doing an independent study or register for an elective course instead. Students will work one-on-one with a professor to craft course work within a specific area of interest to be done over the course of a semester.
- What if I don’t have any experience in public relations—or am already working in the industry?
The program encourages applicants with diverse backgrounds to apply, as no particular bachelor’s degree is required. Curriculum is geared toward students who may have had some public relations training as an undergraduate or through professional experience; however, the course work has been crafted to appeal to both experienced professionals who are returning for a master’s degree and recent earners of bachelor’s degrees. All students will be interviewed prior to starting the program to determine their level of preparedness, and a course map will be constructed for each individual student’s needs.
- Are scholarships available? How do I apply?
Merit-based scholarships are distributed on a competitive basis to eligible applicants. No additional materials are needed outside of the MA application to be considered. Applicants are encouraged to meet with representatives in the Office of Student Financial Services to inquire about need-based aid and other resources to finance their degree. Matriculated students may also apply for a variety of campus jobs, which are continually updated on Hofstra’s website. Continuing students may apply for additional scholarships and are alerted when this opportunity arises during the semester.
- What is the average class size?
Class sizes are small – a range of approximately 10-15 students per class.
- Who is teaching the graduate courses in PR?
Courses will be taught by full-time public relations faculty members and adjunct professors. Adjunct staff will be highly experienced public relations practitioners, each with at least 25 years of experience at corporations and agencies.
- What factors do you consider/what qualities do you look for in applications?
There is no particular academic or professional background required to apply for the MA in Public Relations. The admissions committee will look for applicants whose professional goals connect well with the curriculum and competencies for graduation. Applicants to the program will complete the personal statement portion of an admission application, including:
- BA, BS, or BFA from an accredited college or university
- An undergraduate overall GPA of at least 2.75
- a 500-750 word essay detailing “personal and educational history, past employment, volunteer work or related experience in the intended field of study, plans for graduate study, and plans for a professional career”
- two letters of recommendation
- writing samples (articles, essays, public relations materials, other)
- current resume
- transcripts (GRE scores are optional)
- international students must have a minimum TOEFL score of 93.
All applicants must be interviewed by the program director for a skills assessment. New students are, in general, accepted for the fall semesters. Preference for competitive scholarships, if available, is based on overall GPA and academic potential and is given to early applicants.
- Who can I speak with to find out more about the MA in PR program?