HCIM Admissions

Admissions Criteria

All applicants to the College of Information Studies must meet the minimum requirements set by the University of Maryland Graduate School. These are:

  • Applicants must have earned a four-year baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution, or an equivalent degree from a non-U.S. institution.
  • Applicants must have earned a minimum 3.0 average GPA (on a 4.0 scale) in all prior undergraduate course work.
  • Applicants must provide an official copy of a transcript for all their post-secondary work.

Admission to the HCIM program is competitive. Applicants are evaluated for admission to the program based primarily on academic achievement (GPA and prior coursework) and admissions essays.  

Applicants are not required to have prior programming experience. Students who do not have an educational or professional background in computer science will be required to take a programming course, as many HCIM classes require facility with programming.

Application Process

The University of Maryland's Graduate School accepts applications through its ApplyYourself / Hobsons application system.

The electronic submission of application materials helps expedite the review of applications. Completed applications are reviewed by an admissions committee in each graduate degree program. The recommendations of the admissions committee are submitted to the Dean of the Graduate School, who will make the final admission decision. Students seeking to complete graduate work at the University of Maryland for degree purposes must be formally admitted to the Graduate School by the Dean.

Application Requirements

Applicants should complete the Graduate School Application, which includes:

General Requirements:

  • Statement of Purpose.
  • Transcripts. Uploading unofficial transcripts is sufficient for the purposes of the application review process. However, if you are offered admission and choose to enroll in the University of Maryland, you will need to provide an official and unopened transcript.
  • TOEFL/IELTS/PTE. For international applicants only. TOEFL score of 100 or higher.

Program-Specific Requirements:

  • Three letters of recommendation. Letters of recommendation should come from current/former faculty members, employers, colleagues, and in rare cases personal references. Letters should not come from family members or those unable to speak to your ability to complete a graduate degree.
  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE). GRE Institution Code: 5814. Required for international applicants only. Optional for domestic applicants. GRE scores are typically in the 40th percentile verbal, 60th percentile quantitative.
  • CV/Resume.  A current resume or CV should be uploaded in the "Upload Requirements" section of the application.
  • Application Essay - Required, to be uploaded as "Supplementary Application"
    In 500 words or less, please propose changes to the design of an interface you use on a regular basis. You may choose to evaluate a physical interface (i.e., a technological device) or a virtual one (i.e., an application, a website, etc.). Your response should include at least one visual representation (i.e., screenshots or sketches) and a written explanation of the reasoning behind the changes you've proposed.
  • Portfolio - Optional, to be uploaded as "Supplementary Application Two"
    If you wish to include a portfolio with your application, please submit a brief (no more than 250-word) statement describing the work you've done and a link to your online portfolio. Alternatively, you may upload a PDF portfolio, if desired.

The deadline for domestic & international applicants
for Fall 2018 admission is February 15, 2018

Application Checklist

The College of Information Studies will evaluate your application only when it is complete (see checklist below). We suggest that you submit your application well in advance of the application deadline. Be sure to:

  • Complete The Graduate School application along with the $75 application fee.
  • Complete program-specific requirements.
  • Confirm relevant test scores have been submitted.
  • Confirm recommendations have been submitted.

Applicants are responsible for the timely completion of their applications. Only complete applications will be submitted to the admissions committee for review. Please contact the iSchool Graduate Student Services Office with concerns about missing documents. The iSchool Graduate Student Services Office maintains applications until they are evaluated for admission or the application deadline for the requested semester has passed.

Information for International Graduate Applicants

The University of Maryland is dedicated to maintaining a vibrant international graduate student community. The office of International Students and Scholars Services (ISSS) is a valuable resource for information and assistance for prospective and current international students. International applicants are encouraged to explore the services they offer and contact them with related questions.

The University of Maryland Graduate School offers admission to international students based on academic information; it is not a guarantee of attendance. Admitted international students will then receive instructions about obtaining the appropriate visa to study at the University of Maryland which will require submission of additional documentation. Please see Graduate Admissions Process for International Applicants for more information.

Requesting Deferred Enrollment

The iSchool Student Services Office maintains application files until they are evaluated for admission or the application deadline for the requested semester has passed. To defer your enrollment for a subsequent academic year, the applicant must notify the iSchool Student Services Office (ischooladmission@umd.edu) prior to the beginning of the original entry semester. Otherwise, the application will be deleted.

An applicant wishing to be considered after the file has been deleted must again pay the required Graduate School application fee and re-apply to both, the University of Maryland Graduate School and the College of Information Studies. The new application will be evaluated on the basis of admission standards existing at the time of reapplication.

Frequently Asked Questions

These FAQ are intended to help prospective students and applicants answer common questions about the HCIM program and the iSchool’s admissions process.

Still have questions? Contact the iSchool Student Services Office at ischooladvisors@umd.edu.

Applicants are encouraged to contact the Hobson’s helpdesk for technical assistance.  For questions related to the ApplyYourself application process, prospective students may contact the Graduate School.