Master’s Degree Application Procedures and Deadlines

The Core courses at the Gershon Kekst Graduate School ground students in text study and the history of the Jewish experience, while the school’s electives are innovative in topic, design, and theoretical perspective. Students can choose from myriad courses each semester.

Applicants to the Graduate School must possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university and present evidence of the ability to pursue studies at the graduate level.

Below is a summary of our application requirements and how to submit them to our office, as well as our application deadlines.

Application Deadlines

Applications are accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis after January 1. Please see below for specific application deadline information.

If you are applying to one of our Jewish Professional Leadership programs, please note their application deadlines:

The priority and regular application deadlines for Columbia University School of Social Work are December 1 and February 15, respectively. 

Applications to the Mailman School of Public Health are accepted on a rolling admissions basis through January 15.

Degree Application Deadline Notification of Admission Status from JTS Applicant Reply Deadlines
MA Priority Admission March 1 May 1 June 1
MA Regular Admission May 1 Rolling Rolling

How To Apply

Submit Online

  • Completed online application, which includes prompts for a short biography, educational history, personal statement, and names of your three recommenders.
  • Official transcripts from all postsecondary studies. (If you’re currently enrolled in a degree program, you may submit an unofficial transcript. An official transcript will be needed to enroll.)
  • Completed Hebrew placement exam (provided by the Office of Admissions after receipt of the application).
  • Three letters of recommendation, two of which should be academic.
  • A current academic writing sample (completed within the past five years) in English on the subject of their choice, between ten and 20 pages.

Note on recommendations: Please let your recommenders know whether you have waived your right to view the recommendations should you enroll. Applicants should seek out recommenders who can address their academic qualifications and professional and personal character.

Required Exams and Score Reports

Important Update for Fall 2024 Admissions

GRE/MAT or other graduate-level testing results are requested, but if not available, an alternative metric may be offered by the director of Admissions. This shift in our testing policy allows applicants to prepare their application without fear of being disadvantaged in the process. Students who are unable or choose not to submit scores will not be penalized as applicants for fall 2024. Please note that current policies around “waiving” test scores are still in-place for the 2024 fall semester.

If you have completed testing, we encourage submission of your scores as this information can be a valuable addition in our review. JTS has always practiced a holistic, individualized approach to reviewing our applicants and selecting individuals who are the best fit for our unique graduate programs. Consideration of an applicant includes many factors beyond test scores; we are confident our applicants will continue to demonstrate those qualities to us through their applications again this year.

  • All applicants must submit official scores on the general test of the GRE (JTS GRE code is 2339) or Miller Analogies Test (MAT). Candidates for the joint MSW with Columbia University are not required to submit the GRE. Please note the above update to JTS’s testing policy.
  • Official scores of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the Duolingo English Test for applicants whose native language is other than English and who have not been educated at a college where English is the language of instruction. These test scores are valid for two years from the date taken.

Testing may be waived for one of the following reasons and is at the discretion of the admissions director or dean:

  • Applicant is a graduate of List College at JTS with a GPA of 3.0 or higher.
  • Applicant holds a relevant graduate degree from an accredited university and can provide an official transcript that indicates successful completion of all required course work.
  • Applicant has completed non-degree courses at JTS with a GPA of 3.3 or higher (excluding courses in Hebrew language and the summer Nishma program).

Financial Aid

  • To be considered for a tuition fellowship, please submit the FAFSA application.
  • If you plan on applying for federal loans to supplement your fellowship award, visit our financial aid page to find the loan application.

Our Mailing Address

The Gershon Kekst Graduate School Office of Admissions
The Jewish Theological Seminary
3080 Broadway
New York, NY 10027

Contact Us

Inquiries and applications to the Kekst Graduate School are welcome at any time of the year. For more information or to ask questions about the application or admissions process, please contact the Admissions Office at (212) 678-8032 or email