Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Boston College

Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Boston College

Chestnut Hill, MA
student ratio
total students
Not Reported
average amount to complete degree
January 2
fall application deadline
acceptance rate
19 Departments and Programs
departments and programs


University Overview

Boston College is a Jesuit University with over 14,000 students, 761 full-time faculty members and more than 165,000 active alumni. Since its founding in 1863, the university has known extraordinary growth and change.

From its beginning as a small Jesuit college intended to provide higher education for Boston's largely immigrant Catholic population, Boston College has grown into a national institution of higher learning and is consistently ranked among the top 35 universities in the nation: U.S. News & World Report ranks Boston College 31st among national universities, and Forbes ranks it 26th in its 2012 America's Best Colleges listing.

Boston College attracts scholars from all across the United States and 100 countries. Today, Boston College confers more than 4,000 degrees annually in more than 50 fields through its eight schools and colleges. Its faculty are committed to both teaching and research and have set new marks for research grants in each of the last 10 years; last year alone, faculty members secured more than $60 million in grant funding. The University has made a major commitment to academic excellence. As part of its most recent strategic plan, Boston College is in the process of adding 100 new faculty positions, expanding faculty and graduate research, increasing student financial aid, and widening opportunities in key undergraduate and graduate programs.

The university is comprised of the following colleges and schools: College of Arts & Sciences, Carroll School of Management, Connell School of Nursing, Lynch School of Education, Woods College of Advancing Studies, Boston College Law School, Graduate School of Social Work, School of Theology and Ministry.

The Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

The Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) is the oldest and largest of the university's seven graduate and professional schools. The Graduate School offers programs of study in the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences leading to the degrees of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Master of Art (MA) and Master of Science (M.S.). In addition, numerous dual-degree opportunities are offered in cooperation with the university's professional schools including: the Carroll School of Management, the Boston College Law School, the Lynch School of Education and the Graduate School of Social Work.

With approximately 1,000 graduate students and 400 full-time faculty members, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences is small enough to know you as a person, yet large enough to serve you and prepare you for a rewarding life and satisfying career.

Humanities Departments

-The Department of Classical Studies offers an MA program in Latin, Greek and Classics (Latin and Greek).

-The Department of English offers an MA and a PhD program. The MA program provides a solid and up-to-date grounding in the received canon of literature in English, and in the newer canons in the making, in rigorous scholarly methods and in cutting edge theoretical approaches. The PhD program allows students to study in many periods, authors, and critical and theoretical streams.

-The Department of History offers both an MA and a PhD program with specializations in British & Irish history, medieval history, US history, and modern European history. Emerging areas of faculty expertise and graduate student interest include South Asian history, East Asian history, and Latin American history.

-The Department of Philosophy offers both an MA and a PhD program in the history and problems of philosophy, with specializations in Ancient Philosophy, Medieval Philosophy, Continental Philosophy from Kant to the present, Social and Political Philosophy, and Philosophy of Science.

-The Department of Romance Languages and Literatures offers MA degrees in French, Hispanic and Italian Literature and Culture.

-The Department of Slavic and Eastern Languages and Literatures offers an MA program in Linguistics, in Russian, or in Slavic Studies.

-The Department of Theology offers a PhD program with specializations in Biblical Studies, Comparative Theology, Theological Ethics, History of Christian Life and Thought, and Systematic Theology. A joint Master's program in Philosophy and Theology allows students to take courses in the standard graduate programs offered by both departments.

Social Sciences Departments

- The Department of Economics offers a PhD program designed to train economists for careers in teaching and research by providing strong backgrounds in economic theory, quantitative research methods, and applied fields.

-The Department of Middle Eastern Studies offers an interdisciplinary Master of Arts program designed for students who wish to acquire a broad background in Middle Eastern history, cultures and politics.

- The Department of Political Science offers both an MA and a PhD program with specializations in American Politics, Comparative Politics, International Politics, and Political Theory.

-The Department of Psychology offers full-time, research-oriented MA and PhD programs with specializations in Behavioral Neuroscience, Cognitive Neuroscience, Developmental Psychology, Quantitative Psychology, and Social Psychology.

- The Department of Sociology offers both an MA and a PhD program. The department's MA program prepares students for careers in the areas of social research, applied sociological analysis, and basic college-level teaching, while also providing the foundation for advanced graduate-level study toward the PhD. The department's PhD program is organized around the theme Social Economy and Social Justice: Gender, Race, and Class in a Global Context, and prepares students for careers as university and college faculty members and as researchers and decision makers in business, the public sector, and non-profit organizations.

Natural Sciences Departments

- The Department of Biology offers a PhD program with specializations in cell and molecular biology, genetics, neuroscience, bioinformatics, and immunobiology. The department hosts state-of-the-art research laboratories and core-research support facilities.

- The Department of Chemistry offers a PhD program studying all phases of contemporary chemical science, including many interdisciplinary areas interfacing chemistry with the fields of biology, medicine, physics, and material science.

- The Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences offers an MS program designed to prepare its students for successful careers as geoscientists in the environmental and engineering industries, as well as prepare them for continued studies toward a PhD.

- The Department of Mathematics offers a PhD program specializing in Geometry/Topology and Number Theory/Representation Theory/Algebraic Geometry.

- The Department of Physics offers a research-based PhD program. Current research interests include Correlated Electron Systems, Nanostructures for Energy and Sensing, High-Temperature Superconductors, Metamaterials, Thermoelectrics, Luminescence Spectroscopy, Topological Insulators, Heavy Fermion Systems, Plasmas and Plasmonics, Molecular Organic (Super) Conductors, and Magnetic Materials.

Assistantships and Research Grants

Academic awards are available to ensure that outstanding, academically qualified students have financial support while they work toward their degrees. Stipends and scholarships are offered in the form of Graduate Assistantships, Research Assistantships, Teaching Assistantships, Teaching Fellowships, University Fellowships, and Tuition Scholarships.

No separate application is required to apply for these awards; individuals whose applications are complete will be considered for academic aid by the department in which they intend to study. All of these awards are made by the Graduate School and are usually renewable given satisfactory performance. The amounts of the awards and the number of years for which they are renewable may vary by department.

Research grants obtained under University auspices by members of the faculty represent another source of financial assistance for graduate students. The availability of such grant funds change from year-to-year and vary markedly among the academic disciplines, with the natural sciences being by far the largest beneficiary. Again, no separate application is necessary to apply for such assistance. Students are routinely considered by the principal investigator for financial assistance those funds afford.

Faculty and Student Research

Research is a central piece of academic life at Boston College. The university is dedicated to conducting nationally and internationally significant research that advances understanding, enriches culture, and addresses pressing social needs. One sign of the maturity of a campus community is its ability to bring students and faculty together across disciplinary boundaries to explore important issues. Through their research, our faculty fosters the intellectual development and personal formation of our students.

Boston College hosts over 40 Research Centers and Institutes that allow faculty and students to cooperate on research and teaching. Boston College's Centers and Institutes make significant contributions in scientific research, the exploration of the relationship between religion and society, and improved practice in education, philanthropy and corporate conduct.

Library Resources

The University is home to eight libraries, containing 2.87 million volumes; more than 700 manuscript collections, including music, photos, art and artifacts; 440,000 e-books and more than 600 electronic databases. O'Neill Library, Boston College's main library, offers subject-specialist librarians to help with research, to set up alerts to new publications in areas of interest and to answer any research and library-related questions.

Academic Consortia

In addition to the world-class resources available at the university, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences participates in a host of academic consortia which expand the range of resources already available to its students:

-The Boston-Area Consortium allows graduate students to cross-register for courses at Boston University, Brandeis University and Tufts University.

-The Boston Library Consortium allows Boston College students to access to millions of volumes and other services at nineteen area institutions in addition to the world class resources available through the Boston College Library System.

-The Graduate Consortium in Women's Studies (GCWS) brings together scholars and teachers at nine degree-granting institutions in the Boston area. The GCWS is devoted to graduate teaching and research in Women's Studies and to advancing interdisciplinary Women's Studies scholarship. Students can engage in the community and cross-disciplinary study promoted by the GCWS in myriad ways. Through courses, attending events and organizing conferences, these initiatives provide a learning environment unlike any other.

-The Boston Theological Institute (BTI) allows full-time graduate students in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences to cross-register at Andover-Newton School of Theology, Boston University School of Theology, Episcopal Divinity School, Gordon-Conwell School of Theology, Harvard Divinity School, Holy Cross College (Greek Theology School), St. John's Seminary and Weston School of Theology.

Learning Center

Working closely with the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, the Connors Family Learning Center sponsors seminars, workshops and discussions for graduate teaching assistant and teaching fellows on strategies for improving teaching effectiveness and student learning. Each fall, the Learning Center and the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences holds a one and a half day "Fall Teaching Orientation" workshop, designed to help students prepare for teaching. The Center also hosts ongoing seminars on college teaching, higher learning and academic life; assists graduate students in developing teaching portfolios; and provides class visits and teaching consultations, upon request. Through these and other activities, the Center plays an increasingly important role in enhancing the quality of academic life at Boston College.

Graduate Student Center

One of only a handful of graduate student centers around the country, the Murray Graduate Student Center is dedicated to the support and enrichment of graduate student life at Boston College. Its primary purpose is to build a sense of community among the entire graduate student population and cultivate a sense of belonging to the university as a whole. Its amenities include study rooms, a computer lab, two smart televisions, kitchen, deck and patio space, complementary coffee and tea and more! Throughout the year, the center hosts programs organized by the Office of Graduate Student Life and graduate student groups. The Murray Graduate Student Center also maintains an active job board (available electronically), listing academic and non-academic opportunities for employment both on and off campus.


Located only six miles from downtown Boston, Boston College is an easy car or "T" ride away from one of the world's most vibrant cities. A booming center for trade, finance, research, and education, Boston is an exciting and dynamic place to live and learn. Home to some of the most prestigious cultural landmarks, Boston provides a rich environment for those passionate about art, music, and history. Some of our country's beloved sports teams call Boston home and many of New England's best recreational sites can be found within driving distance. There are roughly 50 universities located in the Boston area, and the large student population adds to the city's intellectually rich and diverse community.

Location & Contact

Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

Boston College

140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467-3800
United States

Dr. Gregory Kalscheur


Phone: 617-552-6850

Mr. Robert Howe

Associate Dean

Phone: 617-552-3265
Fax: 617-552-3700

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Departments & Programs

Degrees & Award

  • Degrees Offered
    • Major Degree Levels Offered
    • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
      Doctor of Sacred Theology (STD)
      Licentiate of Sacred Theology (STL)
      Master of Arts (MA)
      Master of Arts/Juris Doctor (MA/JD)
      Master of Arts/Master of Arts (MA/MA)
      Master of Business Administration/Doctor of Philosophy (MBA/PhD)
      Master of Business Administration/Master of Arts (MBA/MA)
      Master of Business Administration/Master of Science (MBA/MS)
      Master of Divinity (M Div)
      Master of Science (MS)
      Master of Science in Teaching (MST)
      Master of Science/Master of Arts (MS/MA)
      Master of Social Work/Master of Arts (MSW/MA)
      Master of Theological Studies (MTS)
      Master of Theology (Th M)
  • Degrees Awarded
    • Master's Degrees 129
    • Doctoral Degrees 81
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported
    • * Shows the number of degrees awarded for the last academic year that data was reported.
  • Earning Your Degree
    • Part-time study available? Yes
    • Evening/weekend programs available? No
    • Distance learning programs available? No
    • Terminal master's degree available? Yes
  • Degree Requirements
    • Master's Degrees Not reported
    • Doctoral Degrees
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported


28% of applicants are admitted.
  • Acceptance Rate
    • Applied 2,202
    • Accepted 627
    • Acceptance Rate 28
    • Enrolled 191
  • Applying
    • Application Fee - Domestic $75
    • Application Fee - International $75
    • Electronic applications accepted? Yes
    • Applications processed on a rolling basis? Not Reported
  • Application Deadlines
    • Type Domestic International Priority Date
    • Fall deadline January 2nd January 2nd Yes
    • Winter deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
    • Spring deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
  • Entrance Requirements
    • Master's DegreesNot Reported
    • Doctoral's DegreesNot Reported
    • First-Professional's DegreesNot Reported
    • Other Advanced DegreesNot Reported
    • International DegreesNot Reported

Tuition & Fees

  • Tuition & Fees *
    • Tuition & FeesNot Reported
    • *Average dollar amount (tuition & fees) required to complete the degree
  • Financial Support
    • Financial award applicants must submitFAFSA
    • Application deadlines for financial awardsMarch 1
    • Types of financial support availableTuition Waivers, Career or Field-Related Internships, Federal Work-Study, Financial Support for Part-time Students, Scholarship and/or loans, Graduate Assistantships

Student Body

  • Gender
    • Total Graduate Students813
    • Female Percentage39%
    • Male Percentage61%
  • Participation
    • Total Graduate Students813
    • Part-time PercentageNot Reported
    • Full-time PercentageNot Reported
  • Ethnicity
    • Hispanic / Latino3%
    • Black / African American1%
    • White / Caucasian67%
    • American Indian / Alaskan Native0%
    • Asian4%
    • Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific Islander0%
    • Two or more races2%
    • Unknown23%