FAQ

General

Our program website is the most comprehensive and accessible source of information about the program, admission requirements, curricular structure, faculty, and students.  In particular, information about the admissions process is available here.

You may also visit the CRDM student blog, which has information about recent and upcoming student research, activities, and accomplishments.  You may also be interested in taking a look at the website of the CRDM Research Symposium, an annual event that brings together renowned international researchers to address a current topic in digital media.

Typically, students finish our CRDM program in four years, the length of time that the program offers funding. However, due to their personal goals, some students choose to take a 5th year to finish projects or focus on other work. Other CRDM students have successfully completed the program in as little as in three years.

Part-time/Distance

Part-time is an option. 1-2 students are accepted each year who are part-time. A few things to keep in mind.

  1. There is no funding for part-time.
  2. You will not have as many opportunities for the kinds of RAships on grants and other initiatives that are an important part of what makes our graduates successful.
  3. You won't have as strong a connection to a specific cohort w/whom you take all of your core classes, etc.

Also, the window for completing a degree is 10 years.

Part-time students have been successful and thrived, but the program is designed around full-time students.

Unfortunately, distance education (DE) is not a possibility for our Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media PhD program. We require 6 core courses that are in-person only (CRD 701, 702, 703, 704, 790, 809). In addition, the other requirements that make up the degree generally won't be offered via online courses (for example, the majority of our students take English and/or Communication courses, neither department currently offers any graduate distance education courses). Also, DE would keep you from opportunities for graduate assistantships on grants and other on-campus positions, which are an important part of the program.

International

Yes. The program is open to international students. We would like to continue growing the ranks of our international students. FYI: we have/had several Fulbright students, in case that is an opportunity available to some of your students. You or they will need to contact our Grad School for information on requirements/expectations for international applications.

We recommend contacting the Office for International Services. They are the primary place to get information for international students.

If the student does not have a US-degree and is not an US citizen, we require the TOEFL. More on the graduate school homepage: http://www.ncsu.edu/grad/handbook/sections/2.3-grad-admissions.html.

The Graduate School sets the minimum score requirements, which can be found here: http://www.ncsu.edu/grad/handbook/sections/2.3-grad-admissions.html#N. All international students need a TOEFL score. However, if you have a previous degree from an United States institution, you do not need to take the TOEFL.

CRDM does not offer conditional admission. 

You can find IELTS requirements on the Graduate School website:  https://www.ncsu.edu/grad/catalog/english-prof.html

Application

NC State uses an online application system. Information about the admissions process is available at http://crdm.chass.ncsu.edu/admission

Most of the students in this program have graduate degrees in Communication, English, or some closely related discipline. It is because the CRDM program draws its core faculty from the departments of Communication and English that we recommend disciplinary training in those fields. Moreover, the theories, concepts, and methods from those disciplines constitute a background knowledge that is assumed in the required seminar courses. During the admissions process, however, we do routinely consider applications from people with graduate degrees in other fields. So long as an applicant makes a strong case for why his/her interests touch on strengths of the program (e.g., see http://crdm.chass.ncsu.edu/), the admissions committee will give strong consideration to the applicant, no matter his/her disciplinary background.

If your degree is not in one of the disciplinary areas we outline on the website, it may be the case that you have taken enough courses to satisfy the admissions requirement. If you have taken 9 credit hours of courses in Communication, English, or a related field and 3 credit hours in a secondary area, that may count as your disciplinary area requirement. If not, the admissions committee does make exceptions for students whose interests match particularly well to the program strengths and whose measures of academic success (e.g., GRE scores, GPA, letters of recommendation) suggest the student’s ability to take the initiative to fill in gaps in his/her knowledge.

For more information about applying, visit our website: http://crdm.chass.ncsu.edu/admission. Applications are due by January 15th for admission for the Fall. We do not accept applications after this date. 

Personal statements are normally between 1-3 pages long, but we do not have a minimum or maximum length requirement. 

For the academic writing sample, would you prefer a past academic essay from graduate coursework or an article I am currently submitting for publication in an academic journal?

A forthcoming publication in an academic journal would be a great sample, so long as it reflects research interests supported by the program.

Yes, we require the GRE. If a prospective applicant has taken the GRE in the past 5 years, they do not need to retake it.

It is best that your GRE scores are submitted before our application deadline. In extenuating circumstances, you may request that the director of graduate programs accept a late score submission if it can be delivered in a reasonable time frame. Scores provided after committee review will not be admissible. 

Yes, you can defer admission for one year. Applications are only “active” for one year. If you deferred for one year, so you cannot defer again. You will have to reapply and pay the application fee in order for your application to be considered. 

Hardcopies:  
The Graduate School
Attn:  Belen Gebremichael
North Carolina State University
1000 Main Campus Drive,
room 2300A
Campus Box 7102
Raleigh, NC 27695-7102

Electronic:
graduate-school@ncsu.edu

No, the Graduate School evaluates all transcripts for accepted students. 

The institution code 5496 is the only code needed to report scores to NC State University. If ETS gives you an option to report a test to NC State undergraduate admissions, select the NC State Graduate School instead.

GRE scores do matter in the admissions process, but we always consider them in the context of other application materials. Low scores are not necessarily a matter of concern if your application contains other materials that suggest your ability to succeed at graduate level work (e.g., high GPA, strong letters of recommendation from professors).

Please note that GRE scores expire after 5 years.

Assistantship/Financial Aid

Click for information about financial aid.

CRDM offers competitive graduate assistantships to qualified, full-time candidates. The program assigns either a Teaching Assistantship or a Research Assistantship.  Assistantships take a variety of forms, including teaching classes on your own, providing teaching support to a CRDM faculty member, providing research assistance to a CRDM faculty member, providing support to the CRDM program (such as website management and event organizing).   In most cases, the expectation is that you would work half-time (20 hours per week) during the 9-month academic year.  Some assignments are 12 month appointments. All assignments supporting faculty are with CRDM faculty. 

Normally students start teaching either COM 110 (Public Speaking) or ENG 101 (Writing), and then as they move along in the program they also have the opportunity to teach other upper level undergraduate courses within their area of expertise. 

CRDM students who are awarded a teaching assistantship will contribute to teaching in one or both of the two departments supported by the program (English and Communication). It is the program's expectation that all students not on grant-funded research assistantships will teach.