This web page describes our graduate admissions process. Questions should be directed to our Graduate Coordinator, Joli Huynh.
We recruit students who have a degree (BS, BA, MS, MA, or equivalent) in Chemistry or a related field. We want students with strong academic records, demonstrated aptitudes for research, deep aspirations to enhance their knowledge of chemistry, and sincere motivations to undertake challenging projects. Those who have these qualities are encouraged to apply! We shall review your application holistically by considering all criteria.
Back to top
You will need the following information for your application.
- Your complete academic record: Colleges attended, your majors, and your GPAs. The Graduate School at Virginia Tech seldom admits students with GPAs < 3.0. Please note that they will calculate your GPA based on the most recent half (typically 60 credits) of your undergraduate transcript. Exceptions can sometimes be made for students who have also earned significantly higher GPAs in graduate programs in the United States or Canada.
- A PDF (scanned) copy of an official, college-issued transcript
- A brief, one-page note describing any inconsistencies in your transcript (such as a bad semester that resulted from medical problems). This note can be included with the scanned transcripts.
- Three References
- Names and email addresses of three (3) references who can provide strong letters of recommendation.
- The web-based application system will then ask those individuals to enter their recommendations online.
- Professors in your current department or professors at other schools with whom you have done undergraduate research are highly preferred.
- Email addresses of your references should be their professional email address.
- GRE Scores
- General GRE exam is required
- Expected scores: 153 (59th percentile) on verbal reasoning, 157 (68th percentile) on quantitative reasoning, and 4.0 (40th percentile) on analytic writing.
- GRE Chemistry exam is NOT required. Although not required, it can be used in competing for admission and scholarships. Expected score: 720 (55th percentile).
- Your TOEFL scores (required for international students only).
- NOT required if you complete a degree in the United States.
- Graduate School's minimum TOEFL score: 80 (iBT).
- The Department of Chemistry expects scores in the TOP RANK on ALL sections: Reading (High), Listening (High), Speaking (Good), and Writing (Good).
- Alternatively, you can substitute the IELTS for the TOEFL. The Department of Chemistry expects Band 8 on ALL sections.
- Personal Statement and Resume or CV.
- Graduate School required
- Online application requests
- a "text only" CV or resume, which is analyzed electronically
- or a PDF of your CV or resume
- a PDF of your Personal Statement
- In addition, you will answer a few questions about your specific interests in our department.
Back to top
If you have not yet done so, please read "Preparing to Apply" above. We use an online application. This form can be found at the following link: https://gradapp.stl.vt.edu/pages/login.php You will have the opportunity to enter the information you have gathered, and you will upload your personal statement and CV during the application process.
- Complete the online application form. US applicants do NOT pay an application fee. International students (including those who may be located in the US) must pay a fee of $75.
- You will enter your "self-reported" GRE scores and academic records (colleges, GPAs) into the form. We can base our admission decision on these self-reported scores, but we can also withdraw our offer if we find that your official scores differ significantly.
- Scan your official transcripts and upload them during the application process (you will be prompted for that upload). If you are offered (and accept) admission to Virginia Tech, then your institution will need to send sealed, original transcripts to Virginia Tech.
- Arrange for ETS to submit your official GRE scores (and TOEFL scores, if you are an international student) to Virginia Tech Graduate School. ONLY use institution code 5859.
- Advise your references to expect an email inviting them to submit recommendations on your behalf. Those who are submitting paper reference letters should do so promptly. The electronic references are strongly preferred.
- Special note to International Students: We may interview you by telephone, Skype, or gmail video chat to assess your English speaking and listening skills.
Back to top
We cannot admit you without a completed application. It is your responsibility to make sure your application is complete. If you are unsure whether specific items have reached VT, you can contact Joli Huynh. All of the following dates apply to admission for the Fall semester.
- January 15th. This is our "official" application deadline. What this "deadline" means, in practice, is that we begin offering positions in our program with tuition remission and assistantship support. This process usually takes about one month.
- April 15th. Students who have received offers must respond by this date or they surrender their financial aid packages.
Back to top
If you have been admitted, congratulations! But there is still work to do....
- What does "recommended for admission" mean? The Department of Chemistry can only recommend admission to the Graduate School, who formally admits students.
- Initial notification. As we are confident that the Graduate School will accept our "recommendations" for admission, we notify you immediately by email of our decision, and we say, "Congratulations!!"
- Official notification. You will also receive the official letter from the Department Chair with the official, signed Assistantship Agreement. (About the same time, you should separately receive the official admission letter from the Graduate School). You should sign and return the official, signed Assistantship Agreement by regular mail. (International students may wish to use an expedited courier to ensure that the Agreement reaches us by April 15th.)
- Your Assistantship Agreement will specify a 9-month GTA contract. However, the Department of Chemistry guarantees to all graduate students in Good Standing continued support. This includes summers—either teaching or research assistantships—and full tuition remission for the academic year. This support continues for a maximum of 5 academic years and 4 summers in residence, as long as you are making satisfactory progress toward a doctoral degree (PhD).
- The Weekend. Admitted students who are in the United States will be invited to join us for an enjoyable weekend in Blacksburg to showcase our programs. Within reason, we pay all your local and travel expenses, including necessary airfares. The 2017 Visitation Weekend is 17–19 March (Friday and Saturday, students travel back home on Sunday, March 19). Upon receiving your invitation (look in your email), please contact Joli Huynh (540-231-8225) to arrange your travel and to discuss the details.
- Visiting on your own. Admitted students within the US who are unable to attend the Weekend in March are invited to set up an individual visit by contacting Joli Huynh (540-231-8225).
- Your questions. We realize that choosing a graduate program is a highly personal, career-critical decision. Remember, our faculty members also made those decisions. If you are admitted, we believe you belong in our program. We wish to help you decide whether our program is the best for you. Please contact individual faculty members or Joli Huynh (Graduate Coordinator) with your questions.
- Deadline for Responding. Of course we would like to hear from you as soon as you have decided to attend Virginia Tech. However, the deadline for responding to our offer is April 15th. After this date, you surrender your financial aid package, and we withdraw your offer of admission.
Back to top