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Pepperdine | School of Public Policy

School of Public Policy Admissions

To learn more about our admission process, and how our career-focused curriculum uniquely prepares our students for rewarding careers across the private, civic, and public sectors we invite you to explore the below pages. 

We are excited to announce the return of in-person instruction on the Malibu campus for Fall 2021. Additionally, In response to the needs of our 2021 applicants during the COVID-19 pandemic, the School of Public Policy is making the GRE/GMAT/LSAT requirements optional.


School of Public Policy Admission - Pepperdine University

Admission Requirements

The Fall 2021 application portal will open on October 1, 2020. 

Learn more about the Fall 2021 Course Modality.

For any questions regarding the application process for Fall 2021 enrollment, please reach out to our Admissions Office: sppadmissions@pepperdine.edu

We encourage applications for the fall semester from graduates of regionally-accredited institutions in any area of study. We provide a checklist of requirements, which includes transcripts, letters of recommendation, and a personal essay focusing on your moral and ethical point of view.

Contact the Office of Admissions

Fall 2021 Application Complete Deadlines

  July 15, 2021: Space-Available Only Deadline

US Citizen applications completed after the June 1st deadline and by the July 15 deadline will be considered by the Admissions Committee on a space-available only basis. The Scholarship Committee does not guarantee tuition scholarship awards for applications completed after the June 1st deadline.

Note: The Admissions Committee cannot review non-US Citizen applications completed after June 1, 2021; applications completed after the May 15 deadline are not eligible for the completion benefits associated with the January 15, February 15, March 15 or April 15 completion deadlines; the School of Public Policy reserves the right—at the discretion of the Office of Admissions and Program Services—to review completed applications after the July 15, 2021, space-available only deadline.

The Office of Program Services & Admissions will notify applicants completed by the July 15 deadline of decisions no later than Friday, August 6, 2021.


Students sitting in a classroom on their laptops

International Applicants

The School of Public Policy's student body includes individuals from over 20 countries, so we assure our guidelines and requirements for international applicants are well-defined and up-to-date.

Row of School of Public Policy students in classroom listening to the faculty member teaching - Pepperdine University

Scholarships are awarded to 90% of our students. Our Office of Financial Aid works with candidates to explore assistance options, loan programs, and Federal Work-Study.

SPP students - Pepperdine University

From partnerships to alumni blogs to cutting-edge research, Pepperdine's School of Public Policy creates a dialogue that extends beyond our community.


Admission Events

Admission Questions

 When is the application deadline?

The School of Public Policy processes completed applications beginning October through July for each Fall term enrollment. Applications are reviewed on a rolling admissions basis. Please review our admission deadlines for more information.

 How can I make an appointment to visit the campus?

Please call the Admission Office to make an appointment at 310.506.7493.

 Can I attend a class?

Yes, please contact the Office of Admission to arrange a class visit at 310.506.7493.

 Is work experience required for admission?

No, we recognize that some students would like to continue their education immediately after graduating from their undergraduate institutions. In reviewing an applicant's file, volunteer activities, internships, and leadership experience are considered along with work experience. Typically, a student will have 2-3 years of work-equivalent experience.

 What kind of undergraduate degree should I have in order to study public policy?

There is no predetermined major required to study public policy.

 Is an interview required?

No, interviews are not required for admittance.

 Is there a minimum GRE requirement?

No, each application is reviewed individually, however, an average GRE score range in the 60% would be competitive.  For fall 2021 applicants, official tests (GRE, LSAT, GMAT) are optional due to COVID-19.

 Is there a minimum GPA requirement?

No, each transcript is reviewed looking for grade trends. If the student has challenged himself or herself intellectually by taking courses outside of their major. The average GPA is currently 3.45.