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Department of Physics and Astronomy
University of Mississippi

Graduate Admissions

Please direct any questions about the content on this page to our department’s Graduate Program Coordinator (

Application Deadlines

Students who wish to be considered for admission to the Fall semester should have all their application materials to the department by January 15. September 15 is the deadline for applications for the Spring semester. Most of our student intake is for the Fall. Consult your research group of interest before applying for Spring admission.

General Requirements

Because of the closure of many ETS testing centers and the other logistical challenges students are facing during the Covid-19 pandemic, we are suspending the GRE General Test requirement for admission in Spring 2021 and Fall 2021.

All applicants for admission to the physics graduate program must submit scores from the GRE General Test, official undergraduate transcripts, a brief statement of purpose (SOP), and an academic CV. Applicants should also arrange to have two letters of recommendation sent to the department’s Graduate Program Coordinator. Competitive GRE scores and an undergraduate GPA equivalent to a B or higher are required for admission.

The GRE Physics Subject Test is optional, since we recognize that it may be a financial and logistical burden for some international applicants. But if available, a score from the Physics Subject Test should be sent. Our graduate committee prefers to have this information when making admissions decisions.

The SOP should not be longer than one page, and it should not be a personal essay about how the applicant came to be interested in physics. Rather, it should summarize the applicant’s research experience (if any) and planned field of study (if known); and it should explain why the applicant is a good fit for our program. The academic CV is an appropriate place to highlight awards, scholarships, and other accolades. It does not need to include personal information (e.g., age or marital status) or work experience not directly related to the proposed program of study.

Additional Requirements for International Applicants

As a special accommodation to students during the pandemic, the Graduate School is now accepting the Duolingo English Test (DET) in place of the usual TOEFL and IELTS for students who are unable to book into a testing center.

All applicants whose native language is not English are required to submit official scores received from either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). TOEFL & IELTS will not be required if the applicant has studied in a U.S. institution for 8 consecutive semesters (4 years), or obtained a Master’s degree at a U.S. institution, or if they took 4 years of instruction at an institution outside the U.S., which has English as its medium of instruction.

Full admission will be granted with the following TOEFL score: Internet Based (IB) 79, Computer Based (CB) 213, or Paper Based (PB) 550.

All students with TOEFL scores of IB 79 to 99, CB 213 to 249, and PB 550 to 599 will be re-tested with The University of Mississippi English Placement Test prior to registration to determine if the student must enroll in an intensive English course such as English for International Students (IE 090/091) during their first semester of enrollment.

Full admission will be granted with an IELTS score of 6.

All students with IELTS scores of 6–7 will be re-tested with The University of Mississippi English Placement Test prior to registration to determine if the student must enroll in an intensive English course such as English for International Students (IE 090/091) during their first semester of enrollment.

Competition for admission to the program is strong. International students who score less than 158 on the Quantitative GRE are rarely admitted, with scores higher than 160 being typical. Students with TOEFL or IELTS scores lower than the required ones for full admission are occasionally admitted on conditional status, but higher scores are usually needed.

Admission Process

Step One: Apply Online

All applications are submitted through the University of Mississippi Graduate Admissions web sites: Apply Online Now

Step Two: Supply Standardized Test Scores

Provide the Graduate School with GRE scores and if needed the TOEFL or IELTS score. To report the scores you’ll need to supply the Educational Testing Service (ETS) the following information:

  • GRE: Institution Code 1840, Department Code 5199
  • TOEFL: Institution Code 1840, Department Code 99

Please do not ask ETS to send us your official scores before submitting your application for admission.

Step Three: Supply Official Transcripts

Arrange to have official transcripts of all your undergraduate and graduate coursework sent to the Graduate School.

Courier address:

The University of Mississippi
Graduate School
54 Galtney Lott Plaza
University, MS 38677
Attention: Graduate Admissions
phone: 662-915-7474

Regular mail address:

The University of Mississippi
Graduate School
P.O. Box 1848
University, MS 38677-1848
Attention: Graduate Admissions

Step Four: Request Departmental Application Review

Send an email request to the Graduate Program Coordinator ( for a departmental review of the application. The statement of research interests and letters of recommendation may also be sent directly to the GPC rather than uploaded to the university application site. Please include the student ID (not the application number) assigned by the online application site.

It is much appreciated if applicants can send their information in pdf format using the following file name convention:

  • LastName FirstName CV.pdf
  • LastName FirstName SOP.pdf
  • LastName FirstName GRE.pdf
  • LastName FirstName TOEFL.pdf
  • LastName FirstName transcript BS.pdf
  • LastName FirstName transcript MS.pdf

While the Graduate School accepts only official documents, the GPC can make a preliminary determination using unofficial copies (scans and screen grabs are fine).