2022-2023 Academic Catalog

Graduate Admission and Student Services

Phone: 708-209-4093 
Email: grad.admission@cuchicago.edu
Located: AD 158
Website: www.cuchicago.edu/academics/degrees-and-programs

Concordia University Chicago considers candidates for admission who demonstrate the ability to successfully complete a program of study. Candidates must exhibit attitudes, values and character that will positively contribute to the University’s mission and environment.

Admission for graduate traditional and cohort programs may be granted for fall, spring or summer semesters. Generally, all documents relating to admission must be submitted to Concordia University Chicago’s Office of Graduate Admission and Student Services at least two weeks prior to the term in which a student intends to take classes. International students have earlier deadlines.  See the International Student Admission section below as well as the CUC graduate admission website for specific program application deadlines.

Submit all admission documents to:                             
Office of Graduate Admission and Student Services
Concordia University Chicago
7400 Augusta Street
River Forest, IL 60305
Email:  Grad.Admission@CUChicago.edu
Fax:  708-209-3454

Procedure for Admission

Master’s Degree (M.A., M.A.T., M.B.A., MCM, M.Ed., M.S.) Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to a master’s program, applicants must have an earned bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and submit the following:

  • Admission Application: Apply online
  • Objective Statement: Capture your goals and ambition for pursuing the graduate work at Concordia University Chicago.  Submit a double-spaced document, using proper grammar, professional writing style, and correct paragraph composition.
  • Official Transcripts: Provide official transcripts from institutions where degrees were earned. Transcripts can be sent via U.S. Mail in an officially sealed institution envelope or sent directly from the Registrar of the institution in an electronic format.  Any foreign transcripts must be evaluated by a Concordia-approved international credentialing service, such as WES (World Education Services) or ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators). Evaluations must be ordered in a course-by-course format.
  • Two Letters of Recommendation: Letters should be from individuals able to comment on the applicant’s academic proficiency, personal character, and competence and effectiveness in professional work.
  • Additional Admission Requirements: Additional requirements such as prerequisite courses, licensure, professional experience, resumés and/or additional writing samples may be required depending on your program. Please visit the program admission page to view these requirements.

Show evidence of ability to achieve success in a graduate program by the following:

Standard Admission: To be considered for standard admission, candidates will present a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.85 or above or will have earned a master’s degree with a grade point average of 3.0 or above. All licensure and endorsement candidates must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0; these master's programs include C&I ESL, Educational Technology, Gifted Education, Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT), Reading (Specialist), School Leadership, Principal Preparation, Special Education Early Childhood, Special Education LBS1, and Teacher Leader.

Probationary Admission: To be considered for probationary admission, one or more of the following special conditions may exist: 1) a cumulative grade point average between 2.25 and 2.84 (on a 4.0 scale); 2) have a master’s degree with a cumulative grade point average below a 3.0; and/or 3) credentials/documents that raise cause for reservation for admission. Students admitted on probationary status must earn a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or above in CUC graduate coursework within their first semester of enrollment to remain eligible and continue in the program.

Provisional Admission: To be considered for provisional admission, candidates will present credentials that satisfy standard or probationary admission requirements, but need to satisfy additional admission requirements. All admission requirements must be satisfied by the end of the candidate’s first semester of enrollment to remain eligible and continue in the program. Provisional admission carries full degree-seeking status.

Post-Master’s Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to a post-master’s program, applicants must have an earned master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution with a cumulative 3.0 GPA and submit the following:

  • Admission Application: Apply online
  • Objective Statement: Capture your goals and ambition for pursuing the graduate work at Concordia University Chicago.  Submit a double-spaced document, using proper grammar, professional writing style, and correct paragraph composition.
  • Official Transcripts: Provide official transcripts from institutions where degrees were earned. Transcripts can be sent via U.S. Mail in an officially sealed institution envelope or sent directly from the Registrar of the institution in an electronic format.  Any foreign transcripts must be evaluated by a Concordia-approved international credentialing service, such as WES (World Education Services) or ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators). Evaluations must be ordered in a course-by-course format.
  • Two Letters of Recommendation: Letters should be from individuals able to comment on the applicant’s academic proficiency, personal character, and competence and effectiveness in professional work.

Show evidence of ability to achieve success in a graduate program by the following:

Standard Admission: To be considered for standard admission, candidates will present a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.85 or above or will have earned a master’s degree with a grade point average of 3.0 or above. All licensure and endorsement candidates must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00; this includes the Ed.S. Superintendent Endorsement program.

Probationary Admission: To be considered for probationary admission, one or more of the following special conditions may exist: 1) a cumulative grade point average between 2.25 and 2.84 (on a 4.0 scale); 2) have a master’s degree with a cumulative grade point average below a 3.0; and/or 3) credentials/documents that raise cause for reservation for admission. Students admitted on probationary status must earn a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or above in CUC graduate coursework within their first semester of enrollment to remain eligible and continue in the program. 

Provisional Admission: To be considered for provisional admission, candidates will present credentials that satisfy standard or probationary admission requirements, but need to satisfy additional admission requirements. All admission requirements must be satisfied by the end of the candidate’s first semester of enrollment to remain eligible and continue in the program. Provisional admission carries full degree-seeking status

Education Specialist (Ed.S.) Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to an Ed.S. program, applicants must have an earned master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution with a cumulative 3.0 GPA and submit the following:

  • Admission Application: Apply online
  • Objective Statement: Capture your goals and ambition for pursuing the graduate work at Concordia University Chicago.  Submit a double-spaced document, using proper grammar, professional writing style, and correct paragraph composition.
  • Official Transcripts: Provide official transcripts from institutions where degrees were earned. Transcripts can be sent via U.S. Mail in an officially sealed institution envelope or sent directly from the Registrar of the institution in an electronic format.  Any foreign transcripts must be evaluated by a Concordia-approved international credentialing service, such as WES (World Education Services) or ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators). Evaluations must be ordered in a course-by-course format.
  • Two Letters of Recommendation: Letters should be from individuals able to comment on the applicant’s academic potential, personal character and competence and effectiveness in professional work. 
  • Additional Admission Requirements: Candidates may be asked to show evidence of a valid and current Professional Educator License (PEL - Illinois) endorsed in general administrative, principal, chief school business official or director of special education, or PreAL (Oregon).

Show evidence of ability to achieve success in a graduate program by the following:

Standard Admission: To be considered for standard admission, candidates will have an earned master’s degree with a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or above. All licensure and endorsement candidates must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0; this includes the Ed.S. Superintendent Endorsement program.

Probationary Admission: To be considered for probationary admission, one or more of the following special conditions may exist: 1) have a master’s degree with a cumulative grade point average below a 3.0; and/or 2) credentials/documents that raise cause for reservation for admission. Students admitted on probationary status must earn a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or above in CUC graduate coursework within their first semester of enrollment to remain eligible and continue in the program. 

Provisional Admission: To be considered for provisional admission, candidates will present credentials that satisfy standard or probationary admission requirements, but need to satisfy additional admission requirements. All admission requirements must be satisfied by the end of the candidate’s first semester of enrollment to remain eligible and continue in the program. Provisional admission carries full degree-seeking status

Standard Admission for students who meet admission requirements and are pursuing the Illinois Ed.S. program is granted after the first semester upon successful completion of:

  • EDL-7111 Strategies of Educational Leadership for the Illinois Superintendent Endorsement
  • EDL-7260 School/District Improvement Using Data Analysis
  • Faculty Interview

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to a doctoral program, applicants must have an earned master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and submit the following:

  • Admission Application: Apply online
  • Objective Statement: Capture your goals and ambition for pursuing the graduate work at Concordia University Chicago.  Submit a double-spaced document, using proper grammar, professional writing style, and correct paragraph composition.
  • Official Transcripts: Provide official transcripts from institutions where the bachelor’s and master’s degrees were earned. Transcripts can be sent via U.S. Mail in an officially sealed institution envelope or sent directly from the Registrar of the institution in an electronic format. Any foreign transcripts must be evaluated by a Concordia-approved international credentialing service, such as WES (World Education Services) or ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators). Evaluations must be ordered in a course-by-course format.
  • Two Letters of Recommendation: Letters should be from individuals able to comment on the applicant’s academic proficiency, personal character, and competence and effectiveness in professional work.
  • Writing Sample: Submit a paper that demonstrates your ability to write in a scholarly manner at a level typical of graduate work. A paper from your master’s program is required. This sample should approach, but not exceed, five pages in length.
  • Professional Resumé
  • Additional Admission Requirements: Additional requirements such as a master’s degree in a similar or related field, licensure, professional teaching/administrative experience, and/or an additional writing course may be required depending on the program. Please visit the program admission page to view these requirements.

Show evidence of ability to achieve success in a doctoral program by the following:

Standard Admission: To be considered for standard admission, candidates will present a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or above in a master’s degree program from a regionally accredited institution. 

Provisional Admission: To be considered for provisional admission, candidates will present credentials that satisfy standard admission requirements, but need to satisfy additional admission requirements such as special program prerequisites. All admission requirements must be satisfied by the end of the candidate’s first semester of enrollment to continue in the program. Provisional admission carries full degree-seeking status.

The number of doctoral students admitted will be limited to ensure quality of the program and dissertation advising. The Graduate Admission Committee reserves the right to request additional information or documentation deemed helpful in evaluating applicants for admission.

Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to a doctoral program, applicants must have an earned master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and submit the following:

  • Admission Application: Apply online
  • Rationale Statement: Provide information on your future educational goals and/or objectives and their relationship to pursuing doctoral work at Concordia University Chicago.
  • Official Transcripts: Provide official transcripts from institutions where the bachelor’s and master’s degrees were earned. Transcripts can be sent via U.S. Mail in an officially sealed institution envelope or sent directly from the Registrar of the institution in an electronic format. Any foreign transcripts must be evaluated by a Concordia-approved international credentialing service, such as WES (World Education Services) or ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators). Evaluations must be ordered in a course-by-course format.
  • Two Letters of Recommendation: Letters should be from individuals able to comment on the applicant’s academic proficiency, personal character, and competence and effectiveness in professional work.
  • Professional Resumé
  • Additional Admission Requirements: Additional requirements such as a master’s degree in a similar or related field, licensure, professional teaching/administrative experience, and/or an additional writing course may be required depending on the program. Please visit the program admission page to view these requirements.

Show evidence of ability to achieve success in a doctoral program by the following:

Standard Admission: To be considered for standard admission, candidates will present a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or above in a Master’s degree program from a regionally accredited institution.

Provisional Admission: To be considered for provisional admission, candidates will present credentials that satisfy standard admission requirements, but need to satisfy additional admission requirements such as special program prerequisites. All admission requirements must be satisfied by the end of the candidate’s first semester of enrollment to continue in the program. Provisional admission carries full degree-seeking status.

The number of doctoral students admitted will be limited to ensure quality of the program and dissertation advising. The Graduate Admission Committee reserves the right to request additional information or documentation deemed helpful in evaluating applicants for admission.

Approval, Certificate and Endorsement Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to an approval, certificate and/or endorsement program, applicants must have an earned bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and submit the following:

  • Admission ApplicationApply online
  • Objective Statement: Capture your goals and ambition for pursuing the graduate work at Concordia University Chicago. Submit a double-spaced document, using proper grammar, professional writing style, and correct paragraph composition.
  • Official Transcripts: Provide official transcripts from institutions where degrees were earned. Transcripts can be sent via U.S. Mail in an officially sealed institution envelope or sent directly from the Registrar of the institution in an electronic format.  Any foreign transcripts must be evaluated by a Concordia-approved international credentialing service, such as WES (World Education Services) or ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators). Evaluations must be ordered in a course-by-course format.
  • Two Letters of Recommendation: Letters should be from individuals able to comment on the applicant’s academic proficiency, personal character, and competence and effectiveness in professional work.
  • Additional Admission Requirements: Additional requirements such as prerequisite courses, licensure, professional experience, resumés and/or additional writing samples may be required depending on your program. Please visit the program admission page to view these requirements.

Show evidence of ability to achieve success in a graduate program by the following:

Standard Admission: To be considered for standard admission, candidates will present a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.85 or above or will have earned a master’s degree with a grade point average of 3.0 or above. All approval, certificate, endorsement and licensure candidates must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.

Probationary Admission: To be considered for probationary admission, one or more of the following special conditions may exist: 1) a cumulative grade point average between 2.25 and 2.84 (on a 4.0 scale); 2) have a master’s degree with a cumulative grade point average below a 3.0; and/or 3) credentials/documents that raise cause for reservation for admission. Students admitted on probationary status must earn a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or above in CUC graduate coursework within their first semester of enrollment to remain eligible and continue in the program.

Provisional Admission: To be considered for provisional admission, candidates will present credentials that satisfy standard or probationary admission requirements, but need to satisfy additional admission requirements. All admission requirements must be satisfied by the end of the candidate’s first semester of enrollment to remain eligible and continue in the program. Provisional admission carries full degree-seeking status.

Guest Graduate Admission Requirements

A guest graduate is a student wishing to enroll in graduate courses for personal or professional growth which does not lead to a degree. 

To be considered for admission as a guest graduate, a student must:

  • Have an earned bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution to be eligible to enroll in master level courses
  • Have an earned master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution to be eligible to enroll in doctoral level courses
  • Present credentials that satisfy standard or probationary minimum GPA admission requirements
  • Apply online

Once admitted, the guest graduate must consult with the Office of Graduate Admission regarding course selection and availability.

International Student Admission Requirements and Procedure

International students must qualify for degree-seeking admission to a graduate program prior to enrolling. The Office of Graduate Admission and Student Services must receive all documents at least six weeks prior to the expected semester of enrollment.  To be considered for admission to a graduate program, international applicants will meet the master’s and doctoral requirements and the following criteria:

  • Foreign Transcript Evaluation: All foreign transcripts must be evaluated by a Concordia-approved credentialing service. We accept official evaluations from World Education Services (WES) or Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE).  Evaluations must be ordered in a course-by-course format.
  • Copy of Transcripts: Provide a copy of your foreign transcript and finalized diploma where your degrees were earned.
  • Proof of English Proficiency: Provide one of the following official documents: 
  • Declaration of Financial Support: A certified document pledging financial support for the first year of study, verifying the same or equally dependable source for the following years of study.
  • Copy of Current Passport
  • Professional Resumé
  • Additional Admission Requirements: Additional requirements such as prerequisites, professional experience and additional writing samples may be required depending on your choice of program. Please visit the program admission page to view these requirements.

International students must qualify for standard or probationary admission in order to enroll. All documents must be received by the Office of Graduate Admission and Student Services at least six weeks prior to the expected date of entry. I-20 forms may be issued only after University acceptance is granted and will remain in effect only for students who continue to make satisfactory progress as full-time students in an accepted University program. The program length may vary for each student.

Pending Admission Status

Students applying for admission to select graduate programs may begin their program with “Pending Status” if the required documentation necessary for an admission decision has not been received at the time the student wishes to register for courses. Students starting their program with “Pending Status” may register for courses in their initial term of attendance only. To register in subsequent terms, such students must be admitted as degree-seeking to the graduate program for which they have applied. Students with “Pending Status” are not eligible for any form of financial assistance.

Candidates interested in the following programs are not eligible to begin with Pending Admission Status: all doctoral programs, Chief School Business Official endorsement, C&I ESL, Educational Leadership/Superintendent Endorsement, Educational Technology, Gifted Education, Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) programs, Principal Preparation, Reading Specialist, School Leadership, Special Education Early Childhood, Special Education LBS1, and Teacher Leader.

International students are not eligible to start a program with “Pending Status”.

Admission Denials/Appeal Procedures

  • Individuals denied admission may appeal by submitting a letter addressed to the Assistant Vice President of Graduate Admission and Student Services via email at grad.admission@cuchicago.edu. In addition to the letter, individuals must submit supporting documentation.
  • All appeals will be finalized and the student notified within 14 days of receipt of the appeal.

Attendance Policy for Students Denied Admission

Students currently enrolled and active in class/es at the time of the admission decision will not be dropped automatically and may remain in class/es for that term and earn graduate credit for passed courses. If a student wishes to drop a class/es, a request must be made in writing to the Office of Graduate Admission and Student Services by email (grad.admission@cuchicago.edu) or by fax to 708-209-3454. No new registration will be accepted from candidates denied admission. 

Cohort Program

Most of Concordia University Chicago’s graduate programs are offered in a cohort format that features predetermined courses and locations. Students in a cohort proceed through their courses in a predetermined sequence which must be followed through to graduation. Students benefit from the instructional sequence with the same group of learners, who generally form a strong, collaborative learning community. Students who remain and follow the order of courses receive a guaranteed tuition rate not to increase over the span of the student’s study as long as the student remains enrolled continuously.  Most face-to-face cohort classes meet one night per week.  Online cohort classes are offered in asynchronous, synchronous, hybrid and hyflex formats.

Graduate Assistantships

Graduate assistantships are available to graduate students with exceptional academic records. Generally, students best suited for graduate assistantships have strong academic records, a strong work ethic and plan to accelerate their degree program. Assignments are based on several factors, including requests by faculty and staff, area of student personal and academic interest and skill, as well as overall fit of the student to the position. Candidates for assistantships must:

  • Apply for admission to the Office of Graduate Admission,
  • Be admitted to the University into a degree program,
  • Maintain a minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA and
  • Be enrolled in at least 6 semester hours in the Fall or Spring semesters at Concordia University Chicago while serving as a graduate assistant.

The graduate assistant position consists of up to 19 hours of work each week. Compensation varies per position within a campus department. Graduate Assistants work in various positions including supporting various campus offices, assisting in the early childhood center, and coordinating activities under the supervision of a specific department chair or division, among other activities.

Information regarding initial application for graduate assistantships is available through the Office of Human Resources.