How to Apply

To apply to the graduate physics program (PhD or M.S.) at UMass:

  1. Follow the directions provided on the UMass Graduate School website - Only the Graduate School can receive and process applications, and make them available online to the Physics Department.
  2. If you have any questions about the application process, please contact our Graduate Program Manager, Katie Bryant.

If you are applying to the PhD program, we strongly recommend that you contact members of the faculty whose research interests you.  Specifically we recommend that you send a short email indicating your interest and a bit about your background, and asking the faculty member if they anticipate openings in their program. Sending a short resume or cv might also help, but remember this is not your application. A good way to get a response is to request a phone or zoom appointment with the faculty member(s). If you do meet, come prepared with your questions about the program or faculty member's research, and be ready to answer questions about your own interests and background. You don't need to know anything about a field to make this connection; we (faculty) might be impressed if you've looked at one or more of our papers, but we certainly won't be expecting it. We are looking for motivation, interest, and tenacity more than specific knowledge.

Contacting faculty is not a required part of the application process for the PhD, but it may be helpful (both to you and and to the Admissions Committee) as part of the decision-making process.

If you are applying to the M.S. Program, note that you are applying to the course-based program (no thesis), although you can do up to 6 credits of independent study that includes research. You are welcome to contact faculty about their research interests, and encouraged to peruse the courses offered by the department.