Graduate Application

Note about the GRE

A General GRE score with or without the Physics Subject Test may be submitted as part of the application, but is completely optional.

Graduate Students Christopher and Mel.

The Astrophysics Graduate Program only accepts applications for Fall admissions. We have limited amount of funding available to cover the application fee to the program. Priority will be given to applicants with backgrounds and experiences derived from e.g. different ethnicities, gender identities, nationalities, socioeconomic backgrounds, veteran status, and/or disabilities. Please contact us if you think you might qualify for these funds.

For more information on how to apply, please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions page, call the Institute office at (612) 624-4811, or email

Application Process

The Astrophysics Graduate Program only accepts applications for Fall admissions.

Application to the graduate program in Astrophysics requires completion of the Graduate School application.

  • To be considered for scholarships/fellowships, applications must be complete and submitted by December 15, 2020.
  • To be considered for TA or RA support, applications must be complete and submitted by January 15, 2021.

We will have a presence at the winter AAS meeting. Contact us if you want to meet. All application materials are submitted electronically through the graduate admissions website. All correspondence regarding your application, including admission decisions, will be communicated to applicants using this system.

The following information is required:


Complete the following statements:

  • On the “Application Statements” page:
    • Objectives: is a document that should be between one and two pages in length, and give the applicants the opportunity to elaborate on their vision for their future as researcher, and indeed what their objectives are in graduate school.
    • Diversity: typically one page in length, no page limit. Should be used to describe anything related to issues of diversity that the candidates think is relevant to their application. How are they going to increase diversity in the department, what have they done in the past or will do to increase diversity and so on.
  • On the “Department/Program Forms—Physics & Astronomy” page (Note: Be sure to enter information into the Astrophysics section):
    • Experience: opportunity to describe the research / teaching they have done in the past. At most two pages in length, typically between one and two pages.
    • Resumé or CV: The CV lists the activities the students have pursued during their career until this point.
    • Other credentials

Please remember to include research experience and any publications you may have in these statements. You do not need to complete or upload any information to the “Program Supplementary Information” page.


TOEFL score, if your native language is not English.


Identification of three people who will write letters of recommendation.


Transcripts from all colleges or universities attended and, if applicable, one transcript from the institution where you obtained your M.S. degree. (Note: Unofficial copies of your transcripts are acceptable when applying. The Graduate School requires official transcripts after admission to our program).


The online application is not complete until the application fee has been paid. Your application will be reviewed upon receipt of all application materials. The School of Physics and Astronomy does not send acknowledgment upon receipt of application, nor does it send notification of missing documents. It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure the arrival of all necessary documents to their correct recipients.

The School of Physics and Astronomy is participating in the NSF Graduate Research Training program titled Data Science in Multi-Messenger Astrophysics (MMA). MMA is an emerging field of astrophysics where multiple messengers are used to study astrophysical and cosmological events and processes: light, gravitational waves, neutrino particles, cosmic rays, and gamma rays. Students participating in this program receive a minor Ph.D. degree in Data Science in Astrophysics (in addition to their Ph.D. in Physics or Astrophysics) and have opportunities to participate in technical and professional training workshops and various outreach activities. One-year $34,000 stipends (plus tuition and fees) are available. For more information, please visit If you would like to be considered for this program, please indicate so in your application.

GRE score

A General GRE score with or without the Physics Subject Test may be submitted as part of the application, but is completely optional.

Contact Information

For questions regarding your application, please contact:

Office of Admissions
The Graduate School
309 Johnston Hall
101 Pleasant Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455
Telephone (+1) 612-625-3014

Direct all other inquiries to:

Director of Graduate Studies in Astrophysics
School of Physics and Astronomy
Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics
116 Church Street SE
Minneapolis MN 55455
Telephone: (+1) 612-626-4811
Fax: (+1) 612-626-2029