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How to Apply

Undergraduate Admissions

Admissions to all of our undergraduate programs are handled through the University. Please follow the admission process as outlined by the Boise State Admissions. For questions specific to our department contact our primary undergraduate advisor Dr. Karen Viskupic (

Graduate Admissions

Application to Geoscience graduate programs must be submitted online through for the  Graduate College application portal. There are two components of applicant evaluation, one performed by the Graduate College and an additional evaluation by the Geoscience Graduate Program Committee (GPC). The GPC evaluates additional application materials (see below) that assess applicant preparation and to identify an appropriate thesis advisor.  Please contact faculty members via email to inquire about their ability to serve as your advisor beginning the Academic Year to which you are applying. If you have any questions about the Graduate application process please contact

Applicants are required to have earned at least a baccalaureate degree from a science, technology, engineering, or mathematics program at a regionally accredited U.S. college or university or from a non-U.S. institution of higher education judged equivalent to a U.S. baccalaureate degree by the International Admissions office. The minimum undergraduate grade point average (GPA) for admission is 3.00 (based on a 4-point scale), computed from all undergraduate credits from the applicant’s most recent baccalaureate degree. A prospective student may apply at any time and should follow the general graduate application procedure for degree-seeking students (see Graduate Admission Requirements). Admission to the program is based on:

As part of the online application for Geosciences Programs, you will be prompted to provide the following:

  1. Unofficial Transcripts. The Department of Geosciences will consider unofficial transcripts to begin assessing your application. However, you must contact the schools you have attended and have them send your official transcripts to the graduate college. You can write in your cumulative GPA and the GPA for your last 60 credits.
  2. Resumé/Curriculum Vitae. Please upload your professional resumé or CV listing educational training, employment and internship history, list of awards, publications including significant technical reports, poster presentations, and grant applications.
  3. Holistic Review Questions. Your response to a set questions designed to assess dimensions of your preparation for graduate study beyond what is reflected in transcripts, resumes/CVs, letters of recommendation, etc. Download this Microsoft Word template and respond to the questions in the document. You will be asked to upload your responses as a PDF in support of your application.
  4. Letters of Recommendation. You must designate at least 3 professional references who will be asked to complete a letter of recommendation on your behalf.
  5. Course Summary Form. Download the College Course Summary Excel template, fill it out using Microsoft Excel. You will upload it as part of the application.
  6. Advisor Interest Form. Download this list of faculty, select the names of any faculty with whom you would like to conduct research or receive advising. You will be asked to upload the completed form in support of your application.
  7. Statement of Interest. The Statement of Interest is used to familiarize ourselves with your research interests and aspirations so that we may find potential advisors aligned with your interests.  The statement of interest should be: (a) no more than 2 pages in length, (b) single spaced, (c) 11pt font size, (d) have 1” margin on all sides, and (e) uploaded as a PDF document. With as much specificity as you can, your statement of interest should:
      • Identify one or more scientific challenges that motivate you to join our graduate program, explaining important knowledge gaps if you can.
      • Outline approaches you might take to address those challenges. For example, you could describe field locations and data you might collect, tools and techniques (e.g., field, analytical, geophysical, computational methods) you think would be helpful, etc.
      • Describe how your research interests would benefit from mentorship from and interaction with one or more specific faculty at Boise State and how your interests align with their ongoing research.

NOTE: The GPC cannot evaluate and act on your application until all of the above have been uploaded to your application and received.

Additional Geoscience Admission Requirements for International Students

English Proficiency. A TOEFL score of 587 or higher for the written exam or 95 internet-based test (iBT) for students whose native language is not English.

Application Deadlines for Graduate College and Department of Geosciences

January 3rd – Geosciences application deadline (Fall Semester enrollment). Candidates are highly encouraged to submit applications by this deadline, and if accepted into Geosciences degree programs are given priority for offers of financial assistance (stipends and tuition waivers).

Late applicants are still encouraged to submit applications materials through April 15th; highly qualified late applicants are eligible for offers of financial assistance pending availability.

September 15th – Geosciences application deadline (Spring Semester enrollment). Applications for mid-year admission to Geosciences degree programs are welcomed; offers of financial assistance depending upon availability, though most departmental funding decisions are made in the spring for fall admissions.

International students – International student applicants are encouraged to begin the admissions process several months prior to the admissions deadline, in order to accommodate potential delays in the processing of visa and entry documents by the US Department of Immigration.


If you have questions regarding a graduate program or the admission process, please contact the appropriate Program Coordinator for the degree of interest. Degrees are listed on the Graduate Programs page.

If you have questions on the International Admissions process and requirements, contact or email

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