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    Jun 21, 2024  
American University Catalog 2022-2023 
American University Catalog 2022-2023 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

International Service (MIS) [Executive Track]

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Offered by the School of International Service , the Master of International Service (MIS) is specifically designed for those with significant experience in international affairs or for those completing, or having recently completed (within three years), a master’s level program in international affairs or a related field from an approved institutional partner. The program’s accelerated, intensive period of study is complemented by opportunities for participating in an array of public dialogue and ongoing research programs.

The Master of International Service Executive Track is designed for students who have at least seven years of professional experience.

Admission to the Program

Applicants must hold an earned bachelor’s degree from an institution accredited by one of the six United States regional accreditation agencies or a degree equivalent to a four-year U.S. bachelor’s degree from an international institution with a similar level of accreditation or recognition by its home country. Assessment of a foreign degree will be based upon the characteristics of the national system of education, the type of institution attended, its accreditation, and the level of studies completed.

Competitive candidates may demonstrate their potential to excel in diverse ways, including a strong academic record, demonstrated success in relevant coursework and/or professional experience, the presentation of a compelling motivation and objective for graduate work, or a combination of some of these factors.

Admitted students may defer matriculation for no more than two semesters provided that a written request for deferment is submitted to and approved by the SIS Graduate Admissions Office.

A Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is optional. Applicants who have completed the exam are welcome to submit their scores as part of their application. Non-native English speakers are required to submit results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) unless they hold a degree from a U.S.-accredited institution before enrollment at SIS. The minimum TOEFL score for full admissions consideration is 100 on the Internet-based test (iBT) or 600 on the paper-based test (PBT). The minimum IELTS score is 7.0. Applicants should plan to take the TOEFL prior to December to ensure full consideration of the application for the following fall semester.

All applicants are required to submit official transcripts and translations from their undergraduate institutions and two letters of reference evaluating their suitability for the program in international service. Finally, applicants must submit an essay outlining their motivation for graduate study. The essay should also contain a brief description of their intended program of study.

Students applying for the Executive Track should have at least seven years of relevant professional experience. An online option is only available for the Executive Track. For more information, please see

Degree Requirements

  • 30 credit hours of approved graduate work, including 18 credit hours in residence
    • Students with significant prior international professional experience in international affairs may apply for advanced standing of up to 6 credit hours upon application to the program; students seeking to use the significant professional experience clause are limited to a total of 6 credit hours, including any transfer credit
  • Capstone Experience: Complete one of the following with grade of B or better:
  • Minimum 3.00 cumulative GPA required to remain in good academic standing and to earn the degree​​​​​​​

Course Requirements

Professional Competencies (9 credit hours)

Concentration (15 credit hours)

  • 15 credit hours of graduate coursework from an approved concentration

Capstone (3 credit hours)

Complete 3 credit hours with grade of B or better from the following:

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