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Indiana University Bloomington

Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies

Frequently Asked Questions



UNDERGRADUATE

Is there a formal admissions process for the Undergraduate Minor or Certificate?

There is no formal admissions process for the minor or Certificate, but students must meet with the CLACS undergraduate advisor to be enrolled in the appropriate program and to discuss course requirements and planning. Please call 855-9097 or email clacs@indiana.edu to schedule an appointment.

Can courses taken through Overseas Studies programs be used for the Minor or Certificate.

Courses on Latin America taken outside of the U.S. oftentimes qualify for inclusion in a Latin American Studies Minor or Certificate. This is not, however, a guarantee. You should consult with the CLACS undergraduate advisor as early as possible in your planning process for overseas study.

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GRADUATE

The University Graduate School at Indiana University oversees Graduate admissions and their website is a valuable source of information for students seeking information about the application process and funding information. Their website can be found here.

What is the application deadline?

All application materials must be received by January 15 to be considered for admission for the following academic year. For international students, the priority date for application is December 1 (see International Admissions Question below for additional information on International Admissions).

Where can I access the online application?

IU Graduate School Online Application

What additional components are required to complete an application?

GRE scores, official transcripts from each undergraduate institution attended, and 3 letters of recommendation (preferably from university faculty members familiar with your academic work). If you wish, you may also submit one (1) sample of your academic writing, preferably no more than 30 pages in length.

Where should I send my transcripts, recommendation letters, and optional writing sample?

Domestic students must hace transcripts, recommendation letters, and other supporting materials be sent directly to the Center:

Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies
Indiana University
1125 East Atwater Avenue
Bloomington, IN 47405

International students should have transcripts/certificates and financial documents sent to the Office of International Admission (OIA). All other supporting documents may be sent to OIA as well, or directly to CLACS for faster processing.

IU Office of International Admissions
300 N. Jordan Avenue
Bloomington, IN 47405-1106

Is there a minimum required GRE score?

There is no minimum required score. The Admissions Committee considers all aspects of each applicant’s file in making admission decisions.

What is the GRE code for the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies?

The Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies does not have its own GRE code. Applicants should use the general GRE code (1324) for The University Graduate School at Indiana University. The Graduate School will then transmit scores to CLACS.

The online application makes reference to a limit of 500 words for the Personal Statement. Can I exceed this limit?

Yes. The CLACS Admissions Committee will read statements of up to 1000 words in length.

What should I discuss in my Personal Statement?

The Committee is interested in hearing about your past studies, research, and work related to Latin America, and about how those experiences prepare and motivate you for graduate work in Latin American Studies. You should also indicate the principal academic interests that you intend to pursue through the M.A. program, and why you consider Indiana University a good “fit” for those interests. Finally, you should explain how the M.A. in Latin American Studies fits within your longer-term academic and professional goals. On all of these points, try to offer as much as you can in the way of specific details that will help the Committee get to know you, your experiences, and your interests.

If applying for a Dual-Degree Program, do I have to apply for both Degree Programs at the same time?

Students who enter into the Dual-Degree program must be admitted to both programs separately and thus applications must be completed at the same time. However, students can apply for the second degree program while enrolled as a Masters Student at the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies. If students are considering this option it must be noted that many programs at Indiana University do not count classes that have been taken before formal enrollment in their program towards the program degree requirements. Students must take care to check with individual programs for complete guidelines.

Are there special admissions procedures for international students?

Yes. Students who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents should begin their application process at the website of the Office of International Admissions. Please note that the priority date for international application is December 1, and that all students whose native language is not English must submit results from the TOEFL exam.

What types of funding are available for incoming M.A. students?

All applicants are automatically considered for Graduate Assistantships in the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies. Graduate Assistants (or “GAs”) work between 15 and 20 hours per week, assisting with public outreach programming, grant writing and reporting, and other dimensions of the Center’s day-to-day operations. In exchange for this work, GAs receive a tuition and fee remission, health insurance, and a living stipend. Availability of Graduate Assistantships is limited and the selection process is competitive.

CLACS can help students with native or near-native language skills in Spanish or Portuguese explore the possibility of instructorships with the Spanish and Portuguese Department. Availability of these positions varies from year to year.

For the 2011-2012 academic year, CLACS will also award several FLAS awards for the study of Portuguese, Quechua, Yucatec Maya, and Haitian Creole. Incoming M.A. students are eligible for these awards, and should see the FLAS section of the CLACS website for more information (CLACS Funding).

Incoming students are also encouraged to seek out external sources of funding, several of which are detailed on the website of the University Graduate School .

How many students begin the M.A. program each year?

Entering classes normally range from 6-12 students in size.

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