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If you have a question regarding Pre-Term in Washington, DC please contact or +1 (202) 663-5671. For inquires about Pre-Term at SAIS Europe, please email

FAQ | Pre-Term

Find out more about the Pre-Term Program at Johns Hopkins SAIS.

Sais Europe Class Photo

Get a jump-start on your graduate studies by attending Pre-Term

No, but a majority of incoming MA candidates attend. Pre-Term is highly recommended if you want to get a jump-start on your studies of economics and quantitative reasoning. Many students prefer to avoid using the 16 non-language courses needed for graduation to satisfy economics and quantitative reasoning requirements. Pre-Term offers the possibility of completing a foundation economics course (microeconomics) or quantitative reasoning course (statistics) as a way of allowing more room for general electives.

No. You may take the Online Principles of Economics course that begins in late April to satisfy all principles requirements. Alternatively, you may enroll in Principles of Economics coursework at any accredited institution, such as a local or community college or an online program.

Yes. The Online Principles of Economics course is the equivalent of two semesters or one year of Principles of Economics. The Online Principles course covers both Principles of Microeconomics and Principles of Macroeconomics, and prepares you for intermediate Microeconomics and Macroeconomics.

Yes. If you take the economics waiver exam offerings in Microeconomics and/or Statistics, you are still eligible to participate in Pre-Term, if necessary. For example, if you pass the Microeconomics waiver exam, you can enroll in Statistics during Pre-Term and vice versa.

No. If you fail a Pre-Term course, you must take that course for credit as part of your curriculum during the year. Students may attempt each economics waiver exam once before matriculating at the school.

Yes. We offer TA sessions throughout the program. These sessions are offered during weekday evenings and weekend afternoons. Regular attendance is strongly encouraged. TA sessions and office hours provide a valuable opportunity to practice and absorb concepts learned in class.

You can enroll in Math for Economics, which will largely focus on the calculus needed to succeed in Microeconomics. After you have submitted your matriculation fees, you will receive access in mid-May to an online course in Blackboard that will provide tutorials, lessons, problem sets and quizzes to assist you in this preparation. Economics teaching assistants are available to provide additional help with math concepts throughout Pre-Term.

Although not required, non-native English speakers are strongly encouraged to take Pre-Term English. The course provides training in important writing, listening, and speaking skills that can help you successfully transition to your fall semester course load. Pre-Term English may also be useful in preparing you to take the required English proficiency exam.

Yes, if you started in January, you are welcome to attend Pre-Term.

Yes. If you are traveling to China to complete the Hopkins-Nanjing Center (HNC) Certificate or MA in International Studies, you are eligible to participate in the Washington Pre-Term. The eligibility requirements for specific course work are the same for all students. You are also eligible to participate in the Online Principles of Economics course prior to Pre-Term.

Pre-Term courses are basically equivalent. Pre-Term Microeconomics and Statistical Methods have the same number of class sessions as during the regular academic year. However, Pre-Term courses are much more compressed with less time to study and to do problem sets in between sessions.

No. Due to overlapping dates you can participate in either Washington DC or SAIS Europe Pre-Term.