How to Apply

Applications must be submitted to the University of Massachusetts Graduate School along with the application fee. The on-line application is through the SPIRE system.

GRE & TOEFL scores are to be sent to the UMass Graduate Admissions Office using institutional code #3917.

Deadline for Submission of Applications

Applications are due at the Graduate School by December 15th for admissions the following September (Fall Semester) or by October 1 for admissions the following January (Spring Semester). Although students can be accepted for the Spring semester, most students are accepted for Fall admission when funding is more readily available.

Application deadline for Fall 2016 is December 15th.
Applications received after the deadline will be considered as space allows.

Required Materials

Applicants must submit the standard University of Massachusetts Application form for Graduate School, available online.

Applicants should apply for either the MS or the PhD program. The Plant Biology Graduate Program does not have a MS/PhD track. Official GRE scores, official transcripts, and two letters of reference must be provided. The institution code for reporting GRE and TOEFL scores is 3917 - no department code is necessary. The Subject Test in Biology or Chemistry or Biochemistry, is optional. The "Personal Statement" as requested on the University of Massachusetts application form should include a brief narrative that addresses work experience, research experience, and scholarship.

Applicants should include reprints of papers published in refereed science journals and/or abstracts from papers presented at meetings (only if they are written in English). Do not including any extraneous information such as photocopies of diplomas, certificates of award, etc. Students whose native language is not English must submit TOEFL scores.

Online Applications/Obtaining Applications

Applications for Graduate School and the University of Massachusetts can be obtained online ( or by writing or calling -

Graduate Admissions Office,
534 Goodell Building
University of Massachusetts,
Amherst, Massachusetts 01003-3291
(413) 545-0722

Graduate Admissions Frequently Asked Questions

Or email Graduate Admissions at:


Potential applicants are encouraged to read through the PB website to learn more about the faculty, curriculum, and facilities. Applicants are welcome to visit our campus to tour facilities and discuss research interests with faculty after submitting an application. In particular, applicants to the MS program should have a clear idea of which faculty member they wish to work with. It is advisable for MS applicants to contact potential faculty advisors directly before applying. You should contact the program office to arrange any subsequent visits. The admissions committee may request a formal interview with MS and PhD applicants, generally during a recruiting weekend in the spring.