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Application Procedures – Geological Sciences

To apply to the Geological Sciences graduate program, applications should be completed online through the UNC Graduate School web portal. After applications are submitted to the Graduate School, the Department will make recommendations for admission. Both domestic and international applicants must use the online application. For questions and assistance regarding the online application, contact the Graduate School directly at

Prior to completing an application online it is strongly recommended that you reach out to faculty members in the department whose research matches your interests to discuss potential research projects and opportunities for new graduate students.


The Graduate School is now accepting applications for enrollment in the Geological Sciences Graduate Program. The deadline for application to be guaranteed consideration for Graduate School Fellowships and Financial Aid is December 13th. The final deadline for Fall 2023 applications is June 13th.

Application Fee Waivers

Applicants whose ability to apply to EMES graduate programs is negatively impacted by the application fee can request a fee waiver by emailing the Graduate Admissions Chair Johanna Rosman ( The email should include a few sentences explaining the reasons the applicant wishes to apply to the program, the faculty member with whom they would work, and justifying the need for the fee waiver.

GRE Scores

Starting from Fall 2021, application to the Geological Sciences graduate program does not require the report of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE’s).

Additional Required Information

Applicants to the Geological Sciences Graduate Program should ensure that their required personal statement includes the following information:

  • Present fields of interest in geology, reasons for applying to UNC, and future professional plans.
  • Please indicate which faculty member or members most closely align with your research interests.
  • If you are currently enrolled in a degree program, please also provide a list of courses that will be completed prior to entering graduate school.

Students are strongly encouraged to contact faculty members with whom their research interests align for information concerning opportunities for graduate study. The interest, support, and availability of individual faculty members are important components of our decision-making process for admission. It is our expectation that all applicants will have pre-defined areas of research interest and will have been in personal contact with potential graduate advisors prior to their application to the program.

Letters of Recommendation

Admission into the Geological Sciences graduate program requires 3 letters of recommendation. These recommendations should come from individuals who can best describe your academic and/or professional qualifications. All recommendations must be submitted on-line.


One unofficial transcript from each university attended must be uploaded within the application. Please do not mail transcripts as that will significantly delay the processing of your application. If offered admission, one paper official transcript for each university attended will be required at a later date. Unofficial transcripts may be used by the Department only as a preliminary measure in ascertaining admissibility.


Students admitted to pursue a graduate degree in the Geological Sciences normally are expected to have an undergraduate degree in traditional geology, biology, geochemistry, geophysics, physical geography, or other related interdisciplinary fields. Deficiencies are determined by the student’s Graduate Committee.

Financial Support

The graduate program in Geological Sciences typically offers full financial support in forms of teaching and research assistantships to incoming students. Special funds from the Graduate School provide competitive fellowships and assistantships for especially well-qualified students nominated by the department.

Tuition Remission

All graduate students are nominated by the Department for tuition remission awards. These nominations are subject to approval by the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. To be eligible, a student must be enrolled full time and be seeking a degree. See the Graduate School web site under eligibility requirements for more details.

Disclaimer Statement

The information provided on this page is specific to this academic program, and is above and beyond the basic admission requirements as established by the Administrative Board of the Graduate School. Applicants are responsible for complying with the basic admission requirements as specified by the Graduate School.