Application Instructions

  • The admission committee will make a decision on your application only after all required materials have been received. The following instructions are also available for download (PDF).

    Slideroom Submission Instructions

    1. In addition to submitting the online application, you are required to submit the Parsons Challenge. The Parsons Challenge must be submitted through SlideRoom.
    2. Finalize your Parsons Challenge submission at the same time that you submit your application. This will avoid any delay in processing your application, as we must receive all required materials before we begin to review an application.
    3. When you have submitted all required materials in SlideRoom, a confirmation number will be emailed to you. Save it for your records.

    Required Application Materials

    1. Application Form: Complete the online application. All applicants are required to apply online.
    2. Application Fee: A nonrefundable $50 application fee and a $5 SlideRoom fee, payable as part of the online application.
    3. Official Transcripts
      All applicants must provide official high school and/or college transcripts. If you are currently in school, submit transcripts for all coursework taken to date. Applicants who have attended multiple high schools may submit only the graduating school’s official transcript as long as courses taken at previous schools are reflected on that transcript.

      By Mail: Official transcripts should have an original signature or a raised university seal, and must be in a sealed envelope that has been signed or stamped by the issuing university’s registrar or records office. Applicants can either send official transcripts with an Application Materials Cover Sheet or request that institutions send transcripts directly to The New School. See “Mailing Address for Supplemental Materials” for our mailing address.

      Electronic Transcripts (U.S./Domestic Institutions Only): The New School accepts electronic transcripts only from our approved vendors. The New School’s approved vendors in order of preference are
      • Parchment Exchange
      • Naviance by Hobsons
      • SCRIP-SAFE International
      • National Student Clearinghouse
      We do not accept electronic transcripts sent directly by a student or school offices. Note: All international academic credentials must be submitted as indicated in the International Academic Credentials sections below.

      High School Equivalency: For GED, TASC, and HiSET, send official test score results by postal mail.

      Home Schooling: For homeschooling, send an official transcript from your sponsoring high school or state homeschool association. If an official transcript is not available, you are required to submit either GED, TASC, or HiSET test score results by postal mail. Homeschooled applicants must provide the equivalent of a high school transcript with course or subject titles, duration of study for each title, content of study for each title, and an assessment of performance or “grade.” Preferably, the courses completed at home are part of a curriculum developed and evaluated by a nationally recognized diploma-granting organization or agency. If not connected with such an organization, homeschooled applicants must obtain and submit a GED as confirmation of completing a generally acceptable secondary school curriculum. If an official transcript from a state homeschool association or sponsoring public high school is not available, homeschooled students must submit an equivalency or GED, TASC, or HiSET exam results. Individual homeschooled transcripts with date of completion do not suffice as official proof of graduation.

      International Academic Credentials: All transcripts not written in English must be accompanied by a certified English translation.

      International Academic Credentials with Transfer Credits: Applicants who attended post secondary institutions outside of the US are required to have their transcript(s) evaluated by World Education Services (WES), our preferred provider, or by another member of the National Association of Credit Evaluation Services (NACES). A course-by-course evaluation must be prepared for each transcript. In the absence of an evaluation, the Admissions Committee will do their best to render a decision. Please note, in some cases a review cannot be made without an evaluation and a committee decision will be delayed.

      If using WES, visit for instructions and to begin the application process. The "Required Documents" section will explain what to send. If you request your report online, search for "New School Parsons" when selecting our institution. WES will send your completed evaluation directly to The New School.

      If using another NACES provider, follow instructions for that provider. Mailed evaluations and translations should be sent to the mailing address provided for supporting materials. If you are forwarding the sealed documents yourself, be sure to include the Application Materials Cover Sheet.
    4. SAT or ACT Results: All applicants currently attending an American high school either in the United States or abroad must submit either SAT or ACT scores. The SAT institution code is 2638. The ACT code is 2854. Home school applicants must submit standardized test scores from the either the SAT or ACT. Homeschooled applicants can submit two standardized subject test results in lieu of the SAT.
    5. TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Results: All applicants whose first language is not English must submit valid TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE scores. The minimum score required for TOEFL (IB) is 92, for IELTS is 7.0, and for PTE is 63. (A score of 500 or better on both the Critical Reading and Writing sections of the SAT also satisfy this requirement.)

      The TOEFL/IELTS/PTE requirement may be waived for applicants who have earned a 4-year degree from a U.S. College or University, or for citizens of the following countries whose native language is also English: England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa, or Common Wealth Caribbean (Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago).

      Arrange for the testing service to send your test scores directly to The New School. The New School's TOEFL institution code is 2638. For IELTS, follow the instructions of the testing service. We accept scores from the past two years. If your scores are older, you must retake the test. For more information, visit TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE.

      Applicants also have the option of enrolling in The New School's English as a Second Language (ESL) program. Students who test at ESL Level 6 can waive the TOEFL/IELTS/PTE requirement. See ESL for more information.

      International applicants should refer to International Students for more information about English language requirements and ESL course options.
    6. Parsons Challenge: All applicants must complete the Parsons Challenge. Parsons Challenge must be completed in SlideRoom only. This exercise helps the admission committee understand how a future student develops ideas, creates a theme, visually communicates that theme, and defends the work in writing. Using any medium or combination of media (drawing, video, photography, sculpture, 3D work, collage, digital images, etc.), create three new pieces that explore a common idea.
    7. Essay: In 500–550 words, describe a situation in which you combined analysis and creativity to solve a challenging problem. The problem could be personal, social, political, environmental, or something quite different. The Admission Committee is interested more in your process or method in considering the problem than in whether you reached a definitive solution.
    8. Letter of Recommendation (optional): Applicants coming directly from high school may submit one recommendation from a teacher or college counselor. Students transferring from another college or university may submit one recommendation from a professor with whom they have studied. Your references should be able to speak knowledgeably about your qualifications to study at Parsons The New School for Design. Recommendations can be submitted online; instructions are included with the online application. If preferred, the recommendation form may instead be mailed in a signed, sealed envelope. To have a recommendation sent by mail, download the PDF recommendation form found in the online application, complete your personal information, save the file, and forward it to your recommender for completion and submission. Applicants may also forward signed and sealed recommendations to the Office of Admission using an Application Materials Cover Sheet.