Graduate special students are U.S. citizens or permanent residents who have earned a bachelor's degree and wish to take graduate courses without pursuing a program leading to an advanced degree. Anyone wishing to register for a graduate class must apply and be accepted for graduate special student status.

New graduate special students are accepted year-around! The I'm Ready to Apply page shows links for applying for the fall, spring or summer terms. To find out more about the Graduate Special Student Program, fill out our Inquiry form or email Dr. Beth Gibbons, assistant dean for graduate education.


A bachelor's degree with at least a B (3.0) cumulative grade point average is required for admission. To apply:

  • submit an official undergraduate transcript, and or any official graduate transcripts
  • pay the $75 non-refundable application fee.


Spring 2022: Friday, January 1, 2021
Fall 2021: Friday, August 6, 2021


Graduate special students must satisfy course prerequisites and obtain permission prior to completing course registration. Enrollment in certain graduate courses is limited to degree-seeking students.

Transitioning to a Degree- or Certificate Program

Admission as a graduate special student neither implies nor guarantees subsequent admission to any program at Gallaudet University. Interested students should check with the graduate program coordinator/director to determine whether courses taken as a graduate special student will be acceptable for the program and to learn about limits on the credits that can be applied to a degree program.

Financial Support

Graduate special students do not qualify for federal financial aid and typically are not eligible for financial support from Gallaudet University. However, Gallaudet employees and their eligible family members may qualify for the tuition waiver program.

International Special Students

Gallaudet's International Special Student Program (ISSP) is offered to non-U.S. residents as a way to visit and study, without committing to a degree program.