Graduate Admissions Frequently Asked Questions
February 1: All international applicants, and those seeking funding.
April 15: All other applicants.
Nov 1: All applicants. Funding is not usually available for spring admissions.
Yes. GRE scores (within 5 years of application) are required for all of our degree programs, unless you already hold a masters degree from an accredited US institution. GRE scores are not required for our graduate certificate programs, but do strengthen an application.
No. All aspects of an application are evaluated.
While a 3.0 or above is preferred, all aspects of an application are evaluated.
Yes. When the background of an individual applicant does not meet the program’s requirements, remedial or preparatory courses tailored to a student’s needs may be recommended. Please review the specific requirements for the program you are interested in on our website under Academic Programs.
Yes. When all other admission requirements are satisfied, an applicant may be admitted and advised to take the missing courses as a provisional requirement.
Our graduate courses are offered late in the day, at either 4:30 or 7:10. We also have some distance education courses available and continue to expand our offerings via online courses. Beginning in Fall 2014, our Graduate Certificate in Geospatial Intelligence will be offered as a fully online program. We have many students who attend part-time, as well as full-time students.
Graduate credit earned prior to admission to a certificate, master’s, or doctoral program MAY be eligible to be transferred into the program and applied to the certificate or degree. Transfer of credit requires the approval of the program director and dean or director of the school, college, or institute. The credits cannot have been previously applied toward a degree at another institution or Mason; A minimum of 18 credits must be taken in degree status, after admission to the degree program. See the link below for more specific guidelines.
The number of credits required by a doctoral, master of fine arts, or master’s program of more than 39 credits may be reduced on the basis of a previously earned master’s degree. Reduction of credit requires the approval of the program director and the dean or director of the school, college, or institute. They determine whether the credits are eligible for reduction of credit and applicable to the degree program and the number of credits to be reduced. Reduction of credit is limited to a maximum of 30 credits in a doctoral program. See the link below for more specific guidelines.
Yes. English proficiency must be documented via test scores unless the applicant holds a masters degree from an accredited US institution. Various tests are acceptable, but the TOEFL is the most common. The score must be 88, and a minimum of 20 on each section. Scores must be from within two years and reported directly by the testing agency. All applicants who were educated outside the US are required to submit a credential evaluation, either from an approved agency or Mason will arrange. Financial and immigration requirements must also be met. Please review the guidelines for international students for details on all requirements. See web link below.
Please follow this link to check the status of your application.
Once a complete application is received in the department for review, it takes about two to three weeks for a final decision to be made and for the decision to be given to the COS Grad Admissions Office which is where all official admission notifications come from. (Remember, we do not see any applicant files until all required material has been received and consolidated!)However, many factors can influence the timeline – such as international transcripts requiring translation/evaluation, the wait for official scores to be delivered, university breaks, summer, the busy times at the beginning and the end of each semester.
No. Please do not send any materials directly to the department. All admission documents are processed by the College of Science Graduate Admissions office. When all required information is in, the application is forwarded to the department for admissions review and decisions. Please contract firstname.lastname@example.org for technical application questions. Links at the bottom of the page for direct access to the online application and the College of Science Website.
The department has Graduate Teaching Assistant and Graduate Research Assistant funding available for full-time PhD students which include a stipend, tuition waivers, and health insurance. These are awarded on a competitive basis. Offers of funding are made with the admission decision. Applicants should indicate on their application that they want to be considered for funding. Applicants can reach out directly to faculty in advance whom they may wish to study with to see if research funding may be available. Funding is also offered to masters students for graduate research assistantships on occasion as well, which includes a stipend and tuition waivers. Teaching assistants are centrally chosen by the department.
Additionally, the department can nominate to the Office of the Provost highly qualified applicants to be considered for the Presidential Scholarship. GGS is allocated two of these scholarships. You must be a first time PhD student, have a minimum GPA of 3.5 in the most recently earned degree and have a minimum combined math and verbal GRE score of 1,200/1600 (old test) or 270/340 (new test). The scores must have been earned within the last five years. If you already hold a masters degree but would like to be considered for the Presidential Scholarship, please have GRE scores sent as part of your application.
When admitted, a GGS faculty advisor is assigned automatically. Once enrolled, students may change to a different faculty advisor if they wish.
Apply as a non-degree graduate student (COS deadline of Aug 10 for fall and Jan 10 for spring) and indicate your interest in our program. Begin taking our courses, and apply formally to our program for the following semester.
Yes. GGS houses 6 Research Centers and our faculty is involved in cutting edge research activities. Many students have opportunities to become directly involved. Funding for these efforts is provided by diverse sources, including some of the most competitive programs of the National Science Foundation, NASA, the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, and the US Geological Survey to name but a few.
Still have questions? Please review the additional admissions resources below. Need more specific guidance? Reach out to us at email@example.com.
Additional Admissions Resources (links)
- Apply Now
- Already Applied? Check Application Status
- Admission of International Students
- Guidelines for Credit by Exam, Reduction, or Transfer
- Guidelines for Graduate Non-Degree Applicants
- Guidelines for International Applicants
- Guidelines for Military Educational Benefits
- University Catalog of Courses
- University Catalog: GGS Section
- University Graduate Admissions
- University Graduate Admissions FAQ
- Office of Financial Aid
- Presidential Scholarship Details
- Tuition and Fees