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Stanford Graduate Summer Institute

The Stanford Graduate Summer Institute (SGSI) is a collection of accelerated, week-long courses held two weeks before Autumn Quarter. And it's free!

At SGSI, you can explore new subjects, experiment with new ideas, and meet new people, expanding your community for the years to come.

Courses are immersive. You won’t earn credits, but did we mention that they’re free?!

SGSI 2021 application will open April, 2021.

For questions, please contact


When is it?

Most 2020 courses will begin Monday, Aug. 31st, but specific course schedules vary. SGSI happens two weeks before Autumn Quarter begins, so you can immerse yourself without academic-year pressures.

NOTE: Participating in SGSI may require an earlier move-in date than you were anticipating, resulting in additional housing costs. Please contact Stanford Student Housing for any housing-related questions you may have.

Who can participate?

SGSI is open to current and incoming graduate and professional students enrolled in a degree program in Autumn 2020. Each course is different, so check out their pages to learn more about their desired audience. Postdoctoral scholars are welcome as space allows and can apply starting in mid-June.

What are courses like?

SGSI 2020 will take virtually via Zoom. All course schedules listed are in Pacific Standard Time (PST).

SGSI courses are highly interactive and project-based, so you must be able to fully commit to attending the entire course. Be sure to check the schedules of the courses that interest you!

In extreme cases, a course may be cancelled. If you are enrolled in or have a pending application in a cancelled course, you will be notified immediately and offered a spot in other courses where possible.

When is the deadline?

The deadline for applications is Sunday, July 19 2020. Courses will accept applications until they are full. The application will close for good on Sunday, Aug. 16, 2020.

Course instructors are responsible for reviewing and selecting applications.

When you get notified that you’ve been accepted you will need to confirm your participation by submitting a Student Participation Fee Agreement. It authorizes VPGE to charge $100 to your Stanford bill if you do not fully participate in SGSI. If you wait too long to confirm, your slot may be given to another student.

Courses that have been closed will be identified on the course description page.

How do I apply?

Read the course descriptions and click the Apply button to begin. You will be asked for your 1st and 2nd choice courses and to briefly describe your interest in each course.

NOTE: You’ll need a Stanford University Network ID (SUNet ID) and password to apply. Go here to set one up: All SGSI correspondence will be sent to your Stanford email account, so make sure to check it! (You can also establish email forwarding where you go to set up your SUNet ID.)

How do I select courses? Are there prerequisites?

Select and apply for up to two courses that best match your interests and schedule. If you are accepted, you’ll be enrolled in one course for the SGSI week. There are no prerequisites for participation.

Do the courses offer credit or have any fees?

SGSI courses are free and do not offer grades or credit. Courses won’t show up on your transcript, though you can list them on your resume or curriculum vitae if you want to.

What if I need to miss a day?

VPGE and SGSI instructors will make every effort to accommodate participants missing part of SGSI to observe religious holidays. If you anticipate that need, please email so that we can communicate directly with you outside of the application system.

Is it part of the Summer academic session?

No. SGSI is not a part of the Summer academic session. International students do not need to request a date of entry to the US earlier than the 30 days already allotted to you prior to the start of your graduate program.

Is Stanford Ignite part of SGSI?

No. Stanford Ignite is a separate program and it is not free. Learn more here.

Don’t see your question answered here? Email us!