Master of Fine Arts in Dramatic WritingHow to Apply

The application for Fall 2025 consideration will go live in early September 2024.

The deadline to apply is January 15, 2025.

The following application instructions are for:

All candidates for graduate admission must complete the following:

Submit Application to USC Graduate School

All applicants must submit an application to the USC Graduate School. Applicants should only submit the basic profile information. All supplemental materials and letters of recommendation should be uploaded to the SDA supplemental application in SlideRoom.

Submit an SDA SlideRoom Application

The following materials are required in order to be considered for admission in the USC School of Dramatic Arts. Please be sure to upload all materials via SlideRoom.

  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae (CV): Your resume should include any and all performance activities. If you would like, you may also add any other non-performance work or volunteer experience.
  • Essay Questions: Your responses should address the prompts outlined in SlideRoom.
  • Original Play: Applicants will be asked to submit one (1) writing sample of no more than 15 pages. Submissions should be formatted using standard Samuel French manuscript format or Final Draft with font set at Times or Courier 12-point type.
  • Play Synopsis: In addition to your play, please provide a one-page synopsis of your submission, which includes your play’s plot without adding any editorial commentary. Submissions should be formatted in Times or Courier 12-point font type.
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation: Applicants should solicit letters of recommendation from professionals, instructors or mentors who can speak positively of your work. Please have your recommender submit a letter via SlideRoom. 
  • Non-refundable fee of $15

Submit Transcripts

Submit one (1) original transcript, in a sealed envelope, from each institution attended regardless if the coursework is noted on your degree granting transcript. Electronic transcripts are also acceptable from schools located in the United States. Electronic transcripts are only considered “official” when we receive them from a secure site formally linked to the sending institution or testing service.

College seniors: do not wait for senior-year grades before submitting your application and transcript.

USC undergraduates: You do not have to submit official copies of USC transcripts. You must, however, submit one (1) unofficial copy of your USC transcript. You can obtain one at the Registrar’s office (STARS reports are not accepted).

Submit a FAFSA application (optional)

For applicants who qualify for federal aid, we encourage you to submit a Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) application by the posted deadline. To complete an application, please visit

International Applicants

Submit proof of English proficiency

International graduate applicants must demonstrate English-language proficiency by submitting either TOEFL, IELTS or PTE academic scores.

For more information, please visit the USC Graduate School guidelines on English Proficiency Criteria.

Submit Confidential Financial Statement/Verification of Funds

Admission to the School of Dramatic Arts is based on academic and artistic merit rather than ability to pay. The U.S. government, however, requires that all international student applicants provide proof of ability to pay tuition and living expenses for themselves and their dependents (if applicable) before a formal letter of admission and an I-20 or DS-2019 Certificate of Eligibility can be issued.
For more information, please visit the USC Graduate School guidelines on Submitting Financial Documents.

Transcripts in Original Language of Issuance

International students who have earned their degree outside of the U.S. must check our country-specific requirements to determine if we need original-language copies of their academic records. In such cases, a separate, word-for-word, English-language translation of all academic records must also be submitted. The translation should either be issued directly from the school itself or by a professional, certified translator. It must contain all information shown on the original-language documents and “mirror” them as precisely as possible. Dual-language transcripts are also acceptable.


The GRE is not required for admission consideration.

Our Review Process

We carefully review all applications in order to build an outstanding incoming class. We strive to complete this process in a timely manner with notifications going out no later than April 1. Any applicant may inquire on the status of their application by emailing Associate Dean of Admissions and Student Services, Sergio Ramirez at