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What are the requirements for course completion?

You must have registered for more than four semesters (five semesters for evening program). Master’s degree students need to complete more than 33 credit units and PhD students need to complete more than 39 credit units. Also, you must achieve gpa higher than 3.0, and have taken all the required courses as specified in your degree plan.

Can newly admitted students apply for leave of absence?

All newly admitted students must register in order to apply for the leave of absence, and they can apply in March. Since 2008, all students must go online ( to apply for the leave of absence, and then print the application to submit it to the department office in person. The aggregate term of absence cannot exceed four semesters for graduate students in a master’s program and six semesters for students in a doctoral program (excluding Military Service Leave of Absence). If a student registers (paid tuition in full) and leaves for one year, the increment of tuition will not be applied for the next year.

How long is the leave of absence valid?

Leave of absence is only valid for two academic semesters (totaling to one calendar year). If a student has taken a leave of absence for a year, he/she must re-apply for leave of absence or apply for returning to school. You will be dismissed from the school if you exceed these time allotments. Students whose leave of absence exceeds the given allotments MUST return no matter when one has taken the leave of absence.

Can I change my status from General Leave of Absence to Military Service Leave of Absence?

If you wish to change your status to Military Service Leave of Absence, you must bring according document (i.e draft notification) and submit it to the department office. Military Service Leave of Absence does not count towards the maximum number of years to take leave of absence. .

What documents do I need to return after Military Leave of Service?

You need bring resident registration certification (with military service record), or certification of military service discharge.

I am on a leave of absence. Since I will be returning the next semester, can I register for courses when it is open for current students?

You can register for classes online even when you are on a leave of absence. Since most academic is done online, make sure to check that your academic status has reinstated.

How do I receive scholarship?

You can receive scholarship through T.A, tuition exemption, and work-study program. You must apply for online and submit a hard copy to the department office in order to be considered. You must have attained gpa of 3.3 or higher for the previous semester.

How do I select thesis advisor?

Thesis advisor is assigned based upon student request, but for those who did not make a request, it is done randomly. If you wish to change your advisor, due to the change in your interests or thesis subject, you need to submit Application for Advisor Change Form to department office.

When is the qualifying exam, and what are the requirements to take it?

Qualifying exam for each program is scheduled on the beginning of each semester (March and September), and you must have completed the requirements below. Check the Announcement section of the website for detailed information.
Master’s: Registered for more than two semesters, and have completed (or expected to complete) more than 12 credits. PhD: Registered for more than three semesters, and have completed (or expected to complete) more than 18 credits.

Is there time-period limit for thesis submission?

According to Article 11 of the SNU Degree Conferral Rules, you must submit your thesis within four years after completing your master’s coursework and six years after completing Ph.D. coursework. However, you may apply to extend the period. Academic committee will determine to grant additional time (maximum of two years) to submit your thesis. If you failed to submit your thesis within given time period for understandable excuse, GSPA academic committee will decide whether you should be granted one-time only permission to submit your thesis. If you are granted such permission, you must register as a research student for one semester (Master’s students) or two semesters (Ph.D. students) and submit your thesis with the approval of your advisor and dean. The time period may not exceed three years.

What is the difference between graduate school and professional school?

Professional school aims to train students with practical application of theories and research development in a specialized field of their specific career. Graduate school is to master fundamental theories and academic research. Master’s program at GSPA of SNU is a professional program, whereas PhD program is a academic program.

Which classes should I take to prepare myself for a career in public sector?

GSPA offers PCL special lecture series in order to help students better understand public administration and other related subjects. Unlike traditional lectures, this series focuses on taking mock tests and receiving professor’s feedback. Through the one-on-one interaction with professors, students are expected not only to improve their understanding on the subject but also to be equipped with test-taking skills. Before registering, students are advised to consider the purpose and characteristics of this course. Only students who have studied each subject before and have in-depth understanding are recommended to sign-up.

What is the Career Service Center for?

Career Service Center provides professional consultation and services for the students who are interested in (1) getting a career in public sector (government agency, public agency, public enterprise), (2) continuing academics (PhD, study abroad), (3) changing career plan (4) overall graduate school life. It is located at room #107, Bldg 57-1

How can I get consultation from Career Service Center?

You can e-mail ( or call (880-5853) to send a quick question or make an appointment. Or please visit Room 107 at Bldg 57-1 during the office hours.

Does the Career Service Center help me draft resume, cover letter, or statement of purpose?

No. We only provide helpful information when drafting those documents. And we comment on already completed resume and cover letter.


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