FAQs for CHEM and BCHM graduate admissions

Q1) Are GRE scores required? If so, is there a minimum score for admission?
A1) GRE scores are optional. There is no cut-off score for admissions.


Q2) Your program provides a stipend, tuition remission, and subsidized health insurance. Do I need to apply for these resources separately from my application?
A2) No, there is no separate application for stipend, tuition remission, and health insurance. Admitted students in good standing receive these benefits.

Q3) Is there a minimum GPA for admission to the Chemistry and Biochemistry Programs?
A3) The Graduate School at the University of Maryland has a requirement that a student’s GPA is at least a 3.0 (out of 4). In some cases, students with slightly lower GPAs are offered admission, based on other favorable aspects of their applications. If in doubt, ask us.

Q4) What is the deadline for applying for Fall 2022?
A4) January 20, 2022.

Q5) Should I discuss in my Statement of Purpose the specific faculty members with whom I would like to do research?
A5) Yes, we want to know the type of research you are interested in pursuing in graduate school. This information is not binding, but helps us assess overlap of your application with our program.

Q6) Do I need to have research publications to be admitted?
A6) No, research publications are not required for admission, but they are one way to demonstrate your previous success in research. Other examples are attending scientific meetings, giving research talks, winning awards, and, of course, a letter of recommendation from your research advisor. If you have not had an opportunity to do research, you can demonstrate your interest in your Statement of Purpose. Getting a letter of recommendation from a professor in a laboratory or computational course will give us information about your technical skills.

Q7) Are students interviewed prior to admission?
A7) In some cases, we arrange online interviews with prospective students to find out more about their interests and plans.

Q8) Is proficiency in the English language required for admission?
A8) Yes, admitted students need to demonstrate their proficiency in the English language. This is accomplished in a number of ways: 1) earning a degree from a US academic institution or from an institution where English is the primary language spoken; 2) passing a language proficiency exam such as TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE. See this site for more information: https://gradschool.umd.edu/admissions/english-language-proficiency-requirements

Q9) Who are the best people to ask for letters of recommendation?
A9) The most influential letters of recommendation come from experienced scientists and teachers who can assess your abilities in relation to a large cohort of your peers. Good resources are professors in STEM courses or research mentors who can comment on your academic performance, your ability to overcome challenges, and your potential for pursuing a graduate degree in chemistry or biochemistry. In some cases, if you have worked in a science-related field, a letter from your supervisor would be appropriate.

Q10) What specific things to include in the Description of Work/Research Experience?

A10) As for "Description of Research/Work Experience", please explain in detail any research experience you may have. This should include any independent research conducted (including those for a class or for a thesis), research assistantships, or internships where your primary role was assisting others in their research. If you were assisting others with their research, be sure to comment on the nature of this research (academic, policy-oriented, etc.) and your contribution. You should also elaborate on your research interests in your field and, if applicable, how these are shaped by your prior research experience.

Graduate School Admissions FAQs