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FAQ

Application and Admissions Process | Deadline | GRE |
Application Fee
| Recommendation Letters | Financial Aid | Beginning Your Studies | What Next?

Application and Admissions Process

How do I apply?
Apply online. With the exception of the application fee, all materials should be sent directly to the REEI admissions secretary. A complete application file consists of the following:

  • Graduate School Application for Admission and Financial Aid.
  • Statement of Purpose (300-500 words) concerning your interests and aspirations.
  • Three letters of recommendation (forms supplied, but not required).
  • One official transcript from each college or university previously attended.
  • Official copy (sent electronically) of the Graduate Record Examination General Test. (You may submit a photocopy with your application to ensure that your file is completed in time.)
  • Application fee of $55.00 paid by credit card online.

Do international students follow the same application procedure?
No. International students must apply to International Admissions. The deadline for international applications is December 1. For more details and application information contact International Admissions at newtoiu@iu.edu or (812) 855-9086.

Where do I send my materials?
You will be able to submit many of your materials, like your personal statement, within the electronic application system. If you need to send materials separately, REEI will accept them via email, fax (812-855-6411), and our mailing address:

Russian and East European Institute
Indiana University
1020 E. Kirkwood Ave.
Ballantine Hall 565
Bloomington, IN 47405-6615

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Deadlines:

What are the admission deadlines for receipt of application materials?
Deadline for domestic applications is January 15 for admission the following fall, September 15 for admission the following spring.

The deadline for international applications is December 1 for admission the following fall, September 1 for admission the following spring.

Spring admission is an exceptional circumstance. Please address this in your personal statement.

Will REEI accept late applications or applications postmarked on the day of the deadline?
The application must arrive at REEI on or before the deadline. Late supporting materials that arrive before the admissions committee begins to meet (usually a week after the deadline) may be added to applicants' files if staff time allows. It is to the applicant's advantage in being considered for admission and fellowship awards to have all materials in before the deadline.

How will I know if my materials have been received?
To check your status, please send the Institute e-mail. We will respond as soon as possible.

I'm afraid some of my materials may not reach you by the deadline. What can I do?
We will accept faxed or e-mailed materials for temporary use. Originals should be sent soon after.

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GRE:

When registering for the GRE, what codes do I use?
When registering, be sure to record the GRE institute code as 1324, and the department code as 2606. You can register for the GRE online or request application materials at the official GRE website.

When should I take the GRE?
GRE scores must be received by REEI before your file can be reviewed for admission. We suggest that you take the GRE as early as possible, preferably one or two months before the application deadline to ensure ample time for scores to be reported to REEI. An applicant whose GRE scores arrive late cannot be considered for financial aid, but the applicant may still be considered for admission. The GRE must be taken before the admission deadline (January 15th for fall).

What if my GRE scores are not above 600 (old scale)?
While we prefer students to have at least one score above 600, we realize that not everyone tests well. We encourage our admissions committee to consider the application as a whole, including GRE scores, transcript, letters of recommendation, and statement of purpose. Students are not accepted or rejected solely on the basis of their GRE scores.

What about the GRE’s new score scale?
As ETS transitions from the older test and score scale to the new versions, REEI will continue to accept the old scores as long as they are valid. For more information on the new exam and score scale, see http://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general/scores

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Application Fee:

Where should I send my application fee?
The application fee must be paid online with a credit card.

May I appeal for the application fee to be waived?
Yes, fee waivers are granted under exceptional circumstances in cases of financial hardship. Direct your appeal to the University Graduate School at grdschl@indiana.edu.

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Recommendation Letters:

Whom should I select to complete my recommendations?
Select three appropriate people to recommend you. They should be familiar with your academic abilities and potential. We accept recommendations from employers, but you may want to consider whether they would be the best persons to evaluate your abilities as a scholar. If you have significant professional experience related to the REEI region (Peace Corps, NGO work, etc.), then a letter from an employer would be appropriate and may even make you more competitive for assistantship funding.

How do I complete the recommendations?
If using a paper application: Fill out your part of the recommendation forms included in the application materials and provide each recommender with a copy. They may write directly on the form or attach a letter. Provide the recommenders with the REEI admissions address and alert them to the application deadline. You should allow your recommenders adequate time to complete the recommendation and forward it to REEI. It is wise to provide recommenders with a stamped and addressed envelope to facilitate the process.

If you are applying online, you will be asked to enter the e-mail addresses of your recommenders. The system will then send an e-mail message to your recommenders explaining how to fill out a recommendation online. You also have the option of printing out forms to give to your recommenders. If you choose this method, you should follow the instructions listed above for paper applications. Although not preferred, a recommender may send a letter without using the recommender form. REEI will accept recommendation letters without the forms. We will also accept letters via email or fax.

What are you looking for in a Statement of Purpose?
Your Statement of Purpose should stay within the length guidelines (300-500 words) and focus as much as possible on your specific study goals and how a master's degree in REEI fits into your plans for a professional career. You can also explain how you first became interested in Russian and/or East European studies, but primary attention should go to your current study goals and career aspirations.

Will REEI keep application materials received even if I have not yet sent the main application form?
Yes, but an application file will not be created in your name until receipt of the application form. If an application form is not received within two years, application materials will be discarded.

What is the best way to contact REEI if I have questions or problems during the application process?
The best way to contact us is via e-mail.

When will I be notified of admissions decisions?
The length of time depends on the individual schedules of the members of the admissions committee. Students are notified by regular mail as soon as admissions decisions have been made, typically four weeks past the application deadline. Unfortunately, we are unable to release admissions information over the phone or by e-mail. You will be notified in writing.

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Financial Aid

Will I be eligible for Federal Financial Aid?
As a graduate student admitted to REEI, you may be eligible for federal loan and work-study programs through the Office of Student Financial Assistance (OSFA). The application priority date is March 1, with award notification starting in June. Late applications are accepted.

Will I be eligible for merit-based fellowships through REEI?
Yes. REEI provides numerous funding opportunities for excellent students. These include departmental grants, awards, fellowships, assistantships, and US Department of Education Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) fellowships for both the academic year and for summer programs. Most REEI fellowships and assistantships are funded through the Title VI program of the US Department of Education (deadline Feb 1st for academic year). Only US citizens are eligible for federally funded fellowships.

Do I have to be enrolled in REEI to receive a FLAS?
No. REEI MA and dual degree students compete against graduate students from other departments and professional schools for FLAS fellowships. REEI receives approximately 80 applications for 9 academic year awards. A FLAS recipient must be enrolled in a graduate program.

What are my chances of getting funding?
Typically, about half of our MA students receive funding. Second year students, who have established a strong record at IU garner more of the funding than do entering students.

How do I apply for merit-based funding?
For most funding opportunities, simply check the box on the application form stating that you would like to be considered. However, the most commonly awarded fellowship for new students, the FLAS, requires a separate application. For more details and application information contact REEI.

What other Indiana University funding might I be eligible for?
Several IU departments affiliated with REEI offer opportunities for funding. These include The Center for International Business Education and Research program for those interested in business study, The Polish Studies Center, Inner Asian and Uralic National Resource Center, West European Studies, Center for the Study of Global Change, and the schools with which REEI offers dual degree programs. For more details and application information contact each department directly.

The GradGrants Center assists graduate students in locating funding and regularly posts announcements for university wide graduate assistantships.

When will I hear if I have been selected for funding through REEI?
The fellowship committee begins to review files after all admissions decisions have been made. You will be notified by regular mail as soon as recipients have been identified, generally in mid to late March. Unfortunately, we are unable to release funding information by phone or e-mail.

I have been listed as an alternate for funding. When will I hear more?
Those initially offered funding must notify us of their decision (usually by April 15th) to decline an award or before the offer can be extended to alternates. This process can be lengthy. You will be notified by e-mail at the time you are selected for funding or once all funding offers have been accepted. Notification is usually made after April 15.

What financial aid is available for international students?
Financial aid for international students is very limited. Only under exceptional circumstances does REEI have funding for an international student seeking the MA. However, international students are eligible for some scholarships, research assistantships and other financial aid opportunities offered by other IU schools and doctoral programs.

The Office of International Services has some funds available to help international students, especially students who are close to graduation. If your department is not able to provide assistance and you are having financial difficulties, you should speak with an advisor at International Services. Available funding includes short term loans, fee assistance awards, and on campus employment. For more information on these opportunities, check The International Student Aid website.

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Beginning Your Studies and Campus Life

When should I plan to arrive in Bloomington?
Students entering the university for fall semester should plan to attend the REEI new student orientation, which includes academic advising and class registration and begins one week prior to the start of classes. At least one month in advance, students will receive a packet that includes the schedule for orientation. Orientation for international students begins two weeks before the start of classes. International students should contact International Admissions for more information. Students beginning study in the spring semester should plan to arrive at least one week before the start of classes.

As a new student, when and how will I register?
New students register online during new student orientation held the week before classes start. Detailed information on academic advising and how and where to register will be provided during orientation. New students must receive advising prior to registration.

Will all the classes listed on the web page and in the brochure be offered regularly?
Classes listed in the brochure have been offered within the last three years and are expected to be offered again. While course offerings change each semester according to faculty availability and interest, the scope of coursework represented remains the same. On rare occasions, when an absolutely critical course for an individual student's desired program is not available, institute students may also take an independent readings course if they are able to find a faculty member willing to work with them on this basis.

Can I apply for a dual degree program after I enroll in the REEI program?
Yes. You may apply for a dual degree program either at your initial application or at any time later in your MA program. If you are considering completing a dual degree, you should keep in close contact with the REEI advisor to ensure that you take appropriate classes.

What types of organizations exist for graduate students?
IU is home to a wide range of student organizations. Groups of special interest to our students include the Hungarian Cultural Association, the Baltic and Finnish Studies Association, the Romanian Studies Association, the REEI Graduate Student Association, and the South Slavic Language Club. These organizations sponsor cultural and academic events meant to encourage and support inquiry into their regions of specialty. Students also hold weekly conversation hours for most of the languages taught at IU and even a few that are not.

Is there health insurance available for graduate students?
Yes. Students may buy health insurance through IU. For more details and application information contact the Student Insurance Office. Paid health insurance is provided to students with academic appointments or fellowships.

How can I better prepare myself to enter the master's program at REEI?
You can prepare for your studies by reading some of the books included on the Recommended MA Reading List, which is a compilation of books recommended for the well-educated M.A. student in Russian and East European studies. Included are key books that have influenced the field and books of synthesis that provide an overview of developments. Also included is a list of important journals and reference works in the Russian and East European area.

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What Next?

What types of careers do REEI graduates enter? What career placement services does REEI provide?
A majority of REEI graduates gain employment within three to six months of graduation, in their field of interest. The interdisciplinary nature of the REEI degree opens the door to many careers, and REEI alumni can be found in a variety of occupations.

REEI graduates are working in the United States and dozens of foreign countries. They are employed by the US Department of State and other government offices, in non-governmental and nonprofit organizations, business, university administration, international exchange agencies, refugee assistance programs, and other fields. Job placement is a high priority in our program.

REEI regularly sends current domestic and international internship and job announcements to its students and alumni. Students receive individual assistance from an advisor, when researching internship, study abroad and employment opportunities. Other career resources include an online subscription of employment opportunities in the fields of conflict management, human rights, international development, law, government and the nonprofit sector.

I'm planning to complete further graduate study after earning my MA. What programs does REEI provide to help me?
REEI has several programs to help students prepare for advanced graduate study. They include a public lecture series, workshops and conferences, the REEI newsletter, and outreach speakers. These programs benefit students by providing opportunities to present research, network with colleagues, form mentoring relationships with accomplished scholars, write and publish articles, and give lectures in their field of study.

In addition, the university offers a program designed specifically for students considering a career in academia: Preparing Future Faculty. The PFF Program sponsors activities throughout the year to prepare aspiring college teachers, including monthly meetings, selection of and work with a faculty mentor, colloquium presentations, brown bag lunch presentations, campus visits, and participation in a campus PFF conference.

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