Frequently asked questions
Q: Are applications accepted for the spring semester?
A: We accept applications year-round for the 4+1 MS programs, although the PhD applications are only once/year with a fall start.
Q: Should I wait for my test scores to submit my application online?
A: We recommended that you submit your application and materials regardless of whether you have received your TOEFL or IELTS scores. Your electronic application must be submitted by the December 1 deadline to be considered for admission. There is no guarantee that applications received after December 1 will be reviewed.
Q: May I contact the faculty?
A: We recommend you contact the faculty in the area of your research interest. We strongly encourage you to contact them before listing them on your submitted application as potential mentors.
Q: Who is the advisor for graduate students?
A: Graduate students are advised by their major advisor, the Director of their Graduate Program, and the Graduate Support Coordinator.
Q: Do the graduate programs require full-time commitment?
A: Due to course offerings and research required, we highly recommended full-time enrollment to ensure you complete the program in a timely manner.
Q: What sources of funding are available for graduate students?
A: PhD students accepted into our programs receive a full financial support package for 5 years that includes stipend, tuition waiver and health insurance. MS students receive financial support only rarely and, on a case-by-case basis. We encourage you to contact faculty members who share your research interests directly to discuss opportunities available to you.
Q: What are the requirements for international students?
A: International students are required to submit additional materials, found on the ASU Graduate College website in addition to the application and supporting materials required from the degree program. This includes proof of English proficiency with a TOEFL or IELTS. See the admissions page for English Proficiency for more information.
Q: If I send my application information in an email, can I receive a pre-evaluation to see if I am eligible to apply?
A: We receive many inquiries and applications; therefore, we are not able to preview your scores to determine your eligibility to apply or make suggestions on your credentials.
Q: If I missed the deadline for application, can I still apply?
A: We consider applications for most programs only once/year. If an applicant has special circumstances, they should contact the program director and may obtain explicit approval to apply out of cycle.
Q: Do all supporting documents need to be submitted by the deadline date?
A: Supporting documents may be submitted after the deadline; however, preference is given to applicants whose files are complete by the application due date. Submission of documents after the deadline may exclude your application from eligibility for special scholarships or fellowships and domestic students may miss an opportunity to attend our Graduate Recruitment Weekend.
Q: Where do I send official documents?
A: Please visit the admissions transcripts page for mailing information.
Do not mail any documents, including official transcripts or copies of test scores to the School of Life Sciences Graduate Programs.
Q: How do I submit recommendation letters?
A: Recommendation letters are submitted electronically. Within the Supplemental Application, you will provide email addresses for your recommendation writers and an email will be sent to each recommender with instructions on how to submit a letter in support of your application. We can only accept letters of recommendation that are submitted electronically using our system.
Q: Which professors are actively recruiting students? Should I contact individual professors about their research group?
A: Most of our professors are actively recruiting graduate students, so we strongly encourage applicants to contact individual professors to discuss research opportunities currently available in their labs. A list of faculty members associated with each graduate program is available when you visit the degree program page of interest. A list of graduate programs can be found on our degree-programs graduate page.
Q: What kind of financial support is available through the department?
A: All students accepted into the Ph.D. programs in the School of Life Sciences will receive a full financial support package for 5 years that includes a stipend, tuition waiver, and health insurance. MS students receive financial support only rarely and, on a case-by-case basis. We encourage you to contact faculty members who share your research interests directly to discuss opportunities available to you.
More information about financial aid and scholarships for asu graduate students can be found by visiting ASU's financial aid graduate page.
Q: When should the financial guarantee form be submitted for international students?
A: The Financial Guarantee form should be submitted only if you are accepted to a graduate program. Graduate Admission Services will send information on completing this form with their official admissions notification. Information on how to complete this form will also be included in the official offer letter.
Q: How can I check on the status of my application?
A: You should monitor your application status from your My ASU page. If anything is missing, you will see priority tasks detailing the missing items. Applicants may be contacted with requests for interviews or further information within 4-6 weeks of the December 1 deadline. Decisions are made between February and April.
Q: When will a decision be made on my application?
A: Applicants will be notified of their decision between February and April. The Admissions Committee appreciates your patience while they carefully review each applicant's qualifications for our graduate programs.
Q: Where can I find information about the graduate admission services application and how do I contact them if I have a question?
Q: What is the academic record form?
A: The academic record form is a document required for all School of Life Sciences graduate applications. The form asks you to provide information on the coursework that you have completed and/or are currently taking. It allows you to group your courses to show the strengths of your preparation in specific subject areas. The form can be accessed below and in the application.