HDFS Graduate Admissions

Requirements for Admission

  • A background in the behavioral and/or social sciences and at least one undergraduate statistics class or research methods class.
  • Strong GPA.
  • Three letters of recommendation that document academic competence and work ethic.
  • Background and professional goals that are consistent with program strengths.


HDFS and Child Life Application Deadline: January 7

  • All degree programs begin in the fall semester
  • January 7 is a firm deadline for complete applications to all degree programs, but later applications may be considered on a “space available” basis in the HDFS MS, Child Life MS, and HDFS PhD degree programs.


MFT Application Deadline: January 7

  • All degree programs begin Fall semester.
  • January 7 is a firm deadline for complete applications to the MFT degree program.


Elements of a Complete Application

  1. The Application Form: The Graduate School at Auburn University uses a web-based application system.
    Click here to apply.
  2. The Processing Fee: The non-refundable application fee is $60 for U.S. citizens and $70 for international students. The fee can be paid by credit card when you submit your electronic application or by check or money order. Your web-based application becomes available for departmental consideration only upon payment of your application fee.
  3. Transcripts: Send one transcript of all undergraduate and any graduate credits from each school previously attended to the Auburn University Graduate School via mail or electronic transfer:
    • The Graduate School
      Auburn University
      Auburn, AL 36849-5122
    • graduatetranscripts@auburn.edu - for transmitting official electronic transcripts from domestic institutions only.
  4. Standardized Test Scores:
    • The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is optional (see information about optional application materials below).
    • TOEFL (if English is a second language): Request that the Educational Testing Service send your official TOEFL scores to the Auburn University Graduate School.
  5. Letters of Recommendation: Three (3) letters are required. The strongest letters come from faculty, employers, or internship supervisors who have worked directly with you and can report on your academic strengths, work ethic, or capacity for teamwork. Submit letters of recommendation through the web-based application system.
  6. Letter of Intent: : Your letter of intent will help the admissions committee assess the fit between your background and goals and the opportunities available in the HDFS, MFT, or Child Life graduate program. Your letter should address the points listed below in 3-5 double-spaced pages.
    • Discuss how your current career plans align with the HDFS, MFT, or Child Life graduate program.
    • Discuss how your education and other experiences (e.g., research, clinical, employment, volunteer/outreach) have prepared you for graduate study in HDFS, MFT, or Child Life.
    • Discuss your research experiences and interests and explain how they relate to research opportunities available in the graduate program. Please specify how your research interests overlap with the work of at least one faculty member.
    Upload your letter of intent through the web-based application system.
    Note: We encourage applicants to consult the HDFS website and contact the Graduate Program Officer or other faculty members to obtain information about the graduate program. We also encourage applicants to solicit feedback about their letter of intent from professors or mentors prior to submission.

  7. Resume: Upload your resume or curriculum vitae through the web-based application system.
  8. Optional Application Materials:
    • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Scores: Request that the Educational Testing Service send your official GRE scores to the Auburn University Graduate School (institution code: 1005).
    • Publications and Professional Presentations: Students who have participated in a professional publication or presentation given in a professional forum are encouraged to send a copy with their application materials. Upload publications or presentations through the web-based application system.als.

Additional Application Material for MFT Applicants: Applicants to the MFT option may be asked to submit a videorecording following initial review by the Admissions Committee. Guidelines for producing the video will be provided to selected applicants following the January 7 application deadline. The MFT option does not require an on-site interview as part of the application process.

Guide to Graduate Programs

Please direct questions about the graduate programs or application process to:

Dr. Stephen Erath, Graduate Program Officer
Phone: 334.844.3236
Email: serath@auburn.edu