FSU Biology - Application Instructions
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Biological Science - Graduate Studies

Florida State University

Guidelines for PhD or thesis-based masters track in Ecology and Evolution

Prospective students applying to the graduate program in Biological Science who intend to study under faculty in the Ecology and Evolution area will only be offered admission with the sponsorship of a faculty member.

Students are strongly encouraged to contact and communicate with prospective faculty prior to applying to the program. While prospective students do NOT need a faculty sponsor prior to applying, each prospective student MUST have a faculty sponsor who is willing to serve as their formal mentor in order to be admitted. Early communication with potential faculty sponsors achieves multiple objectives. Prospective students can 1) verify that faculty members are interested in accepting students, 2) identify faculty that are a good match and can support the prospective student’s aspirations, and 3) maximize the probability that their application packet will be strongly considered by faculty of interest who are willing to sponsor a student.

See the E&E faculty webpage for a list of faculty, their research interests, and if they are willing to accept students.

The application process:

  1. Contact prospective faculty members about willingness to serve as a focal mentor in the program.
  2. Apply to the graduate school via https://admissions.fsu.edu/gradapp/ and submit required application materials, including:
    • Curriculum vitae
    • Official transcripts (note: unofficial transcripts can be sent as a placeholder, but official transcripts are required for admission)
    • 3 letters of recommendation from faculty, supervisors, and/or employers capable of attesting to or commenting on your experience, capabilities, and/or promise in research and academic settings.
    • Graduate research statement. In preparing the graduate research statement, see tips for preparing your application.
    • GRE scores or a GRE waiver. GRE scores are not required for students who are granted a GRE waiver based on meeting specific criteria demonstrating readiness for graduate work. To apply for a waiver click here.
  3. Fill out the Biological Sciences Supplemental Application under your forms here, and indicate at least one faculty member you are interested in working with. Please list faculty members in order of preference. This step is crucial as these faculty will be notified of your interest.
  4. Determine if you are eligible for Internal fellowships: Contact the area representative to inquire about those fellowships. The list of internal fellowships can be found here.

Once prospective students apply, there is a wholistic review and interview process leading to admissions decisions. Students will need both a faculty sponsor and approval of the E&E area faculty in order to gain an offer of admission to the program. For details, see application review, interviews, and admissions.