Congratulations, and Welcome!
We at Boston University’s Graduate School of Arts & Sciences (GRS) are delighted to have you join us for your graduate degree studies. We hope that you will find your time here enjoyable, stimulating, rewarding and successful. Before you arrive on campus, we would like to share the following information with you to make the transition to our school as smooth as possible.
All graduate students at Boston University are required to complete the Sexual Assault Prevention for Graduate Students training (deadline date to be determined). This course is confidential, research-backed, and part of BU’s commitment to student well-being.
Tuition and fees for the 2022-2023 academic year are as follows:
Tuition (12 – 18 credit hours) — $30,525/semester
Student Services Fee — $192/semester
Health & Wellness Fee — $245/semester
Basic Medical Insurance — $3,235/year
Tuition (11.5 credit hours or less) — $1,908/credit hour
Student Services Fee — $60/semester
Information on withdrawal and tuition refunds for Fall 2021 can be found with the University Registrar. This information is important if you find that you are unable to attend classes but have registered. A complete listing of the University’s tuition and fees, as well as explanations of certain fees, can be found with the Registrar.
Student Accounts & Tuition Payments
Once registered, you can view your student account on the MyBU Student Portal under Money Matters.
All Graduate School of Arts & Sciences students are required to settle/pay their tuition and fees each semester by the payment deadline. The payment deadline for new graduate students who start in Fall 2022 is Monday, September 19, 2022. Please submit payments to Student Accounting Services per the deadlines and procedures below.
For information regarding fellowships, loans, external funding sources and more, please see below. Questions concerning aid should be directed to the Graduate School Financial Aid Office, 705 Commonwealth Avenue, Suite 112, Boston, MA 02215 (Tel: 617-353-2696 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please always include your BU ID in all written correspondence).
Please visit the Student Health Services site regarding insurance. This site provides important information about the BU Student Health Insurance Plan, comparable insurance requirements and waiver of the BU Insurance Plan. Part-time students and dependents of full-time students may choose to enroll in the medical insurance plan offered through Boston University.
Health insurance coverage extends from August 15, 2023 through August 14, 2024 for those admitted in the Fall Semester. Coverage extends from January 1, 2024 through August 14, 2024 for those admitted for the Spring Semester. Please note that coverage takes effect once registration has been processed.
To waive the medical insurance, please visit Student Health Services.
Students have the option to purchase Dental Care through the University, which is not included in the fellowship award.
Students who enroll full-time (or are certified full-time) are automatically enrolled in the Sports Pass each year. The Sports Pass is not a membership to the University’s FitRec Center (that’s already included in your Health & Wellness Fee and it is covered by your fellowship). The Sports Pass costs $130 per year and it allows you admission to all home events at the Agganis Arena. The cost of the Sports Pass is not covered by any type of fellowship. For individualized information regarding your Sports Pass, or to cancel your sports pass prior to September 1, visit the MyBU Student Portal and go the Money Matters tab. To cancel your Sports Pass after September 1, please bring your BU ID card to the Agganis Arena Ticketing Office to ensure your Sports Pass has not been used. For additional questions regarding the Sports Pass and the charge on your account, please contact the Agganis Arena Ticket Office at 617-353-4628.
Aid for PhD Students
Information regarding Aid for PhD Students can be found here.
Aid for MFA Students
Information regarding Aid for MFA Students can be found here.
Direct deposit is strongly encouraged for all students (for teaching fellows, research fellows, Dean’s fellows, etc.). International students do not need a Social Security Number to set up direct deposit but they need to have a bank account in the US. If you are new to the University, it is possible that you may not be able to set up direct deposit until after you receive your first payment. Should that be the case you will receive a paper check and the check will be mailed to your local address (if you are an international student) or your home address (if you are a domestic student) or be held at the Student Employment Office at 881 Commonwealth Avenue on the 2nd floor. If you did not receive your first payment, please contact our office at email@example.com. Please include your BU ID in all written correspondence.
Social Security Number
If you don’t already have a Social Security Number, you will need to apply for a SSN card (refer to ISSO’s information on Social Security Cards) regardless of the type of stipend you have in your first year. Please inform your department that you need a SSN so that they can complete the required “SSN Certification Form” on department letterhead and email it to you. Please forward the SSN Certification Form to Ryan Keane, International Student Advisor (GRS), at firstname.lastname@example.org. He will endorse the form. You will then need to complete a Social Security Administration Application for a Social Security Number (SS-5). Locate your nearest Social Security Administration (SSA) office by using the SSA’s Local Office Search. It is strongly recommended that international students apply at the Boston office at 10 Causeway Street. Present the Social Security number application in person at a Social Security Administration Office, along with documentation of age and identity. Have your Certification of On-Campus Employment letter (endorsed by ISSO), as well as immigration documents (passport, I-94, and I-20 or DS-2019). Use the Social Security Administration’s Evidence Requirements form to make sure you have all the documents you need. Additional information can be found on the ISSO website.
Information regarding your stipend and taxes can be found here.
Information regarding Student Loans can be found here.
Information regarding Loan Deferments can be found here.
If you are borrowing loans, make sure you signed the Master Promissory Note and completed Entrance Counseling. If you have a valid credit balance on your account, you can request a refund on or after the first day of classes of the semester:
- Log in to the MyBU Student Portal and click on the “Money Matters” tab and then on “Account Inquiry”
- Enter your bank account information and requested amount
Once you submit the refund request via the MyBU Student Portal, it will be reviewed by our office and if approved, the refund will be deposited to your bank account within 3 business days.
Emergency Funds & Advances
Graduate students who find themselves short of funds while waiting for their fellowship stipend may request an emergency loan or advance. If you are receiving a stipend as part of a University fellowship (e.g. a research fellowship, teaching fellowship, Dean’s fellowship, etc.) and need access to some funds before the normal pay period or disbursement, you may request an advance or emergency loan from the Graduate School. Advances or emergency loans are available only after the first day of classes each semester. In order to be eligible, the student must be registered for the current semester and must not owe a previous semester balance on their student account. Depending on the type of fellowship funding, these emergency funds are in the form of an advance from the student’s stipend check or a short term no-interest loan. To request emergency funds, please complete the form on this page.
Records and Registration
Each student, admitted to the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, is responsible for becoming familiar with the general regulations of the Graduate School as stated in the “Policies” section of the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences Bulletin and with the more specific requirements stated in the individual section on each department, division, or program which may go beyond, or supplement, the Graduate School standards.
If necessary, the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences staff is available to interpret or clarify any rule or regulation.
Boston University does not permit a student to enroll simultaneously in more than one graduate program either within Boston University or at another institution, unless those programs have been previously approved by the Trustees of Boston University as a combined degree program.
Please refer to the Registrar’s website for compliance requirements.
Check the MyBU Student Portal to ensure you have met these requirements. Students not in compliance will be unable to register for future semesters.
You will need to make sure that all previous degrees are accurately reflected on your student record. You can verify this information by following these steps:
- From the MyBU Student Portal, select the Academics tab
- On the Academics page, select “Diploma and Graduation Information”
- From this page, you should be able to view our previous degrees
Please note that due to the pandemic, the Graduate School is experiencing slight processing delays. Generally 10 to 15 days after submitting your final transcript(s) with the degree listed as conferred or awarded, you should see it reflected on your BU transcript in the MyBU Student Portal (under the Academics tab, then Diploma and Graduation Information. If you do not see it, please contact the Graduate School for more information.
If you have not submitted your final transcript(s) in sealed envelopes from your institution as requested in your admission letter, please bring the transcript(s) to the Graduate School Office as soon as possible so that we may update your record. We are located at 705 Commonwealth Avenue, Suite 112. Our temporary hours are Monday – Friday, 10am to noon and 1pm to 4pm.
Please note that if you received your degree from a Chinese institution, and you are not able to request your institution send the degree certificates in a sealed envelope, you will need to send the degree certificates through the China Academic Degrees and Graduate Education Development Center (CDGDC).
International students are required to check in with the International Students & Scholars Office (ISSO) after arriving on campus. For information about new student orientation offered by the ISSO, check their website.
Should you have any problems or questions about your visa status, please contact the International Students & Scholars Office at 888 Commonwealth Avenue, 2nd Floor, Boston, MA 02215 (Tel: 617-353-3565 or email: email@example.com) before coming to the Graduate School. You will not be allowed to register unless you have been cleared for admission by the International Students & Scholars Office.
Personal Data - Address Update
Students are reminded that, in accordance with the Code of Student Responsibilities (Appendix 15), current addresses must be on file with the University. We ask that you provide this information via the MyBU Student Portal.
The home address currently on file for you may be the permanent address provided on your application for admission. Local addresses should be updated once you have located housing in the Boston area. After you matriculate, you will need to update/confirm your local address twice a year in accordance with the University compliance requirements. If your name or Social Security number has changed or is incorrect, these can be updated at the Office of the University Registrar at 881 Commonwealth Avenue, Second Floor. This information cannot be changed using the Student Link.
Registration for new students will take place with your academic department of admission who will send notification to you regarding the dates and times of advising and registration. Most departments will register students during the two weeks prior to the start of the semester. Incoming GRS students are not allowed to register before meeting with department staff. Registration instructions will be provided by the department. If you do not receive information regarding dates of advising and departmental orientation sessions from your department prior to August 1, please contact your department directly.
Please refer to our Registration page for specific instructions.
A complete academic calendar can be viewed on the Registrar’s website.
Student ID Cards
Incoming Students should upload their Terrier Card photos following the instructions on the Terrier Card website. The Terrier Card Office recommends that students submit their photos by August 5, in order for the cards to be printed and ready for pick at the PhD & MFA orientation on September 2.
Students who upload their photos on August 6 – August 19 can pick up their Terrier Card at the GRS office starting September 8. The GRS office hours for the fall semester and address are:
Office Hours: Monday – Friday, 9 AM – 5 PM
Address: 705 Commonwealth Ave, Suite 112, Boston, MA 02215
Students who upload their photos after August 19 will need to pick up their cards at the Terrier Card Office after September 15 and will be notified by Housing when their ID cards are ready.
Withdrawal/Leave of Absence
A student who is registered for a semester and decides not to attend must officially take a leave of absence or withdraw. Mere absence from classes does not constitute a withdrawal. A leave of absence should be taken when the student intends to return in a future semester; a withdrawal indicates a decision to permanently leave the University. Charges are canceled in accordance with the published refund schedule, based on the effective date of the withdrawal or leave of absence.
Boston University Email Account (Early Access)
GRS will be sending an email with instructions on accessing Boston University’s Early Access Program. This program allows incoming students to create a BU email account and allows early access to some online services. If you have submitted all required documents and do not receive the email for setting up access after three weeks, please contact GRS Admissions at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please always include your BU ID in all written correspondence.
For information about graduate housing, please visit the Boston University Housing website.
For information regarding Boston and its neighborhoods, please visit Boston University’s Graduate Education website.
The Office of Rental Property has a listing of available Boston University apartments. For information regarding additional apartments available on the Charles River Campus, please call them at 617-353-4101. Off-campus housing information can be found on the Off-Campus Services website.
Information Services & Technology
BU’s Information Services & Technology (IS&T) department can help you with all of your technology needs. Links for computing resources on campus and information on obtaining support for your personal computer can be found here.
We can just about guarantee you’ll make extensive use of Boston’s rapid transit system (the MBTA, or simply, “the T”) while you are a student at BU.
Boston University is located at several stops along the Boston College branch (B Line) of the Green Line.
The MBTA’s Student Semester Pass allows students to prepay for their monthly “T” passes and thereby save approximately 11% off the regular monthly “T” pass price.
Student Health Services
All entering Boston University students have pre-matriculation health requirements that must be completed prior to your first term at Boston University. Please visit the Student Health Services for important information regarding required medical forms and immunizations.
— Information about Boston University and the city of Boston
— The Educational Resource Center provides students with the services and resources for developing personal and academic skills
— Information regarding campus safety can be found at the BU Police Department’s website
— The Dept. of Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (PERD) offers programs and facilities for numerous forms of physical activity
— If you plan on driving a car to classes, you should take a look at the Office of Parking Services’ website
— Boston University houses a number of libraries on campus and you’ll make use of at least one of them during your time here
— Information Services & Technology provides general-access computing and communications facilities for the entire University community
— The Geddes Language Center provides a wide range of instructional media services for students
— Student Health Services offers a number of health-related services including counseling to the University community
— The Graduate Student Organization (GSO) is a student-run advocacy group for Graduate School of Arts and Sciences students
— Graduate Women in Science and Engineering (GWISE) at Boston University is a student-run group open to all, which strives to create a community to support and promote women in science.
— Finally, information regarding Boston’s rapid transit system, the MBTA, or simply, the T, can be found on the MBTA website.