Department of Chemistry Biochemistry

Frequently Asked Questions

General Application Questions
Admission Requirements 
Program Questions
Financial Questions
Status and Decision
Contact us: chmgrad@asu.edu

Do I have to pay the application fee?
The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry pays the application fee for all applications to their graduate programs. No fee is required from the applicant.

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If I send my application information in an email, can I receive a pre-evaluation to see if I am eligible to apply?
We receive many inquiries and applications; therefore, we are not able to preview your scores to determine your eligibility to apply or make suggestions on your credentials. Since the Department pays the application fee, we encourage all to apply.

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What semesters are applications accepted?
Applications are accepted for the Fall Semester only.

When do applications have to be submitted?
Application and all supporting documents for admission for the Fall semester are due by January 15th of each year.

I missed the deadline for application. Can I still apply?
Applications received after the deadline for Fall admission may be reviewed and considered for admission; however, the applicant may not be eligible for special scholarships or fellowships and domestic students may miss an opportunity to attend our Visitation Weekend. International students must consider important dates for the issuance of immigration documents. Please refer to the following website for this information: http://graduate.asu.edu/admissions/international/visa_immigration/dates

Do all supporting documents need to be submitted by the deadline date?
Supporting documents may be submitted after the deadline; however, preference is given to applicants whose files are complete by the application due date.

Is a Master's degree required for applying to the PhD Program?
Students applying to the PhD programs must have completed a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry, biochemistry, or a related discipline by the semester in which they want to begin their graduate program. Due to differences in the educational system in India, applicants who have received their degree from an institution in India must have completed the Master's degree.

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How do I apply to a graduate program in Chemistry and Biochemistry?

Where do I submit the Supplemental Application Materials to the department?
The URL is https://chem-webtools.asu.edu/SupplementalApps/. You will need an ASURITE ID from Graduate Education before you can access this page.

Why can't I access the Departmental Supplemental Application page?
You will need an ASURITE ID from the Graduate College before you can access this page. Graduate Education will not send your ASURITE ID until you have BOTH completed and SUBMITTED their General application, i.e. you must click the "submit" button at the end of their application. If you have your ASURITE ID and you still can't access, please wait 1 or 2 days so that we can update our own applicant database from Graduate Education. Please also make sure that the email containing your ASURITE ID has not been caught in your SPAM filter.

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How many students will you admit this year?
Our recent incoming classes have had roughly 40 - 45 students, with 10 to 20 of these from overseas, selected from ca. 450 applicants.

 

What is the minimum acceptable GRE score?
The department does not set specific cutoff scores but looks at the academic record as a whole.

Is the subject GRE test required?
No. However, your application will be SIGNIFICANTLY enhanced if you have a high subject GRE score. 

What is the minimum acceptable score for the iBT?
The minimum TOEFL requirement for admission set by Graduate Education is 83 (iBT). The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry requires a speaking score of at least 20. Please do not submit an application if your iBT score is less than this value.

What score on the speaking section of the iBT test do I need to obtain to receive a Teaching Assistantship?
International students receiving a score of 26 on the iBT speaking test are eligible for a Graduate Teaching Assistant (TA) position. Students who score below 26 on the speaking section must complete the spoken English SPEAK test when they arrive. Special English training is provided for students who do not qualify for a TA. All students are required to qualify to TA within a certain time period, which is determined on a case-by-case basis.  

Can IELTS scores be used for English Proficiency?
The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry requires TOEFL exam scores. However; in countries in which the TOEFL exam is not available the IELTS scores may be submitted. The minimum acceptable score is an overall band score of 6.5 with no individual band below a 6.0.

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Do I need to request ETS to send official TOEFL or GRE scores, or can I send a photocopy of my test scores to be evaluated?
You only need to enter your test scores on the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry's Supplemental Application page in order for us to evaluate your application.  You will need to submit official scores from ETS to Graduate Education before you can be officially accepted into the ASU graduate program. Please do not mail or email photocopies of your test scores to the Department.

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Do I need to send official transcripts to both Graduate Education and the Department?
Applicants are asked to submit an electronic copy of their unofficial transcripts as part of the Supplemental Application to the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. The department will use the unofficial transcripts for their review. Official transcripts must be sent to Graduate Education for evaluation for you to be eligible for admission. Do NOT mail your official transcript or ANY documents to the Department.

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Where do I send official documents?

Graduate Education
Arizona State University
1120 S. Cady Mall
Interdisciplinary Building B-Wing, Room 170
Mail Stop 871003
Tempe, AZ 85287-1003  

 

Do NOT mail any documents, including official transcripts or copies of test scores to the Department.

How many letters of recommendation are required?
Three letters of recommendation are required from faculty members who can comment on your suitability for advanced scholarly work. If you are currently employed full-time, only one of these letters can be from your employer. Letters from non-faculty members can be submitted, but they will not be weighted very heavily. We need letters from faculty who can compare you to other students they have previously recommended for graduate school.

Where can I find the form for recommendation letters?
There is no form for recommendation letters. These are submitted electronically. You will enter recommender information on the Department Supplemental Application Page. An email is sent to each recommender requesting a letter in support of your application. We can only accept letters of recommendation that are submitted electronically using our system.

My recommender will only complete a paper recommendation, where can he/she send it?
Unfortunately we cannot accept letters of recommendation on paper, we can only accept letters that are submitted electronically using our system.  

My Institution does not use the 4.0 scale for gpa. What should I do?
Many overseas institutions do not use a 4.0 scale for gpa. You will need to calculate a gpa when submitting to any US graduate program. When submitting your application to Graduate Education, you should use the recommendations given on their website. When submitting your Supplemental Application to the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, however, you MUST use the 4.0 scale. For instructions on how to calculate your gpa on the 4.0 scale for the Department Supplemental Application, with specific advice for applicants from China and India, Click HERE.

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Students Wanting to Transfer from Another Graduate Program, or Who Have Previously Been in Another Graduate Program in the U.S.
We rarely accept students who are transferring from other graduate programs. If you are currently in another graduate program, or if you have already been in another graduate program in chemistry or biochemistry in the United States, then you will need to supply three letters of recommendation from your CURRENT institution, i.e. the one that you are transferring from, or the institution that you previously attended. Please do not have any letters sent from earlier institutions. Specifically, we will need a letter from your CURRENT RESEARCH ADVISOR (or prior research advisor in a U.S. graduate program) stating explicitly why you want to transfer to ASU. If we do not get a letter from your this advisor, we will NOT be able to review your application

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Which professors are actively recruiting students, and should I contact individual professors to see if they will consider me for their research group?
Professors' group requirements change constantly and we are not able to provide a list of actively recruiting faculty. However, all students, whichever professor they eventually work for, must first apply to and be accepted into the program. Individual professors do not make decisions regarding admissions and should not be contacted with admission enquiries. Professors will often discuss research projects by email with enthusiastic applicants.

Should I contact faculty directly?
Individual professors do not make decisions regarding admissions and should not be contacted with admission enquiries. Professors will often discuss research projects by email with enthusiastic applicants.

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What kind of financial support is available through the department?
All students accepted in the PhD Chemistry/Biochemistry programs are offered financial support by means of a Graduate Assistant position. There are a limited number of first year fellowships. Fellowship recipients are selected by the admissions committee based on their merit and overall comparison with other applicants.

Is there a special form to complete for financial support via a Graduate Assistantship?
There is no additional paperwork to complete for a Graduate Assistantship.

I am an international student, when should I submit the Financial Guarantee Form?
The Financial Guarantee form should be submitted only if you are accepted to a graduate program. Graduate Education will send information on completing this form with their official admissions notification.

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How can I check the status of my application?
Your application status can be checked in two places:

When will a decision be made on my application?
The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry Admissions Committee will begin their review of applications close to the deadline. The number of Fall Semester Applications received in the past few years has averaged over 450 per year; therefore, it may take up to 6 weeks before notices are sent. The Admissions Committee appreciates your patience while they carefully review each applicant's qualification for our graduate programs.

Where can I find information about the Graduate Education application and how do I contact them if I have a question?
General information on the Graduate Education application can be found on their website: http://graduate.asu.edu/admissions/support or you can contact them by email using the following link: http://graduate.asu.edu/admissions/support/contact?id=2

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