picture of a boardwalk in a forest

Where should I have my letters of recommendation sent?  Is there a recommendation form?
There is not a separate recommendation form.  You have the option of entering the names and email addresses of three referees in the online application form.  They will be sent a link and will be able to upload their letters directly.

Can my letters of recommendation be sent via email?
If you are concerned about your letters reaching us in time, you can contact the ECM Director Dr. Meryl Shriver-Rice at shriverrice@miami.edu or the Exploration Science Director Dr. Keene Haywood at keene@miami.edu. Depending on circumstances, we may accept letters directly by email.

Is there a required score on the GRE for admission?
Our baseline combined score for consideration is 302 (new GRE) or 1000 (old GRE).  In some cases, a strong academic and research record could mitigate GRE scores, but if you feel your scores are not representative of your potential, you will want to address that factor in your personal statement in the online application.

I took my GRE scores some years ago.  Can I still use them?
You must have taken the GRE no more than 5 years prior to your application for the scores to be eligible.

Where should I send my GRE scores?
GRE scores should be sent to the main UM reporting number, which is 5815.

Do I have to send a copy of my diploma?
You are not required to send your actual diplomas, but are required to have official, sealed transcripts sent to UM’s Graduate School from every higher education institution you have attended. International students must have their transcripts evaluated (please see the information here for instructions and guidelines).

I’m concerned that I will not be able to have original transcripts or reports of test scores sent in time for the application deadline.  Can I send copies?
For the purposes of our initial admissions review, we will accept scanned versions of the documents transmitted via email (in .pdf or .jpg format). But you must contact the appropriate Master’s course director to confirm that this is acceptable. However, for admission to be finalized, UM’s Graduate School must receive hard copies of all necessary documents via regular mail from the originating institution of higher education or testing organization.

Do you accept students who do not have a Bachelor’s degree? What Bachelor’s GPA is required for entrance to the MPS or MA?
No. You must have completed a Bachelor’s degree before entrance to a Master’s program.

A minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 is required.

Do you admit students for Spring term?
Yes. Though we do encourage Fall enrollment so that each student might enter with a larger cohort of students folowing the same academic schedule.

Do you accept part-time students part-time or offer an online degree?
We do not have an online option. Both the Exploration Science MPS and the MPS and MA in ECM offer part-time degree options.  Contact the appropriate director for further information.

I am an international student.  Do I need to take the TOEFL?
If English is not your first language or you did not study at an English-language institution internationally, you will need to take the TOEFL or IELTS within two years of applying.  Typically, a TOEFL PBT score of 550 or higher,  a TOEFL iBT score of 80 or higher, or an IELTS score of 6.5 or higher are required.  Scores should be sent to the main UM reporting number, which is 5815.

I do not have U.S. resident status.  Am I eligible to apply?
In order to study at UM, you will need to go through various procedures required by the federal government.  Detailed information about the procedures can be found at this U.S. government site.

Additional information about obtaining visas and health immunizations, completing forms necessary for entry into the U.S., getting to campus, and finding housing is provided on the UM Graduate School site for prospective international students.

If you are admitted, the Abess Center can provide additional information and assistance.

What is the cost of a Master’s program?  Does the program provide support?
There is financial aid available to prospective Master’s students (submit a FAFSA), however there are no UM grants or fellowships at this time to cover the cost of a Master’s program. The current cost of a UM Master’s program can be found on the UM Graduate School website.

If I want a fellowship, do I have to apply separately for one?
Yes. We encourage potential students to apply for external fellowships if they are eligible, or for grants and fellowships, including those directed to underserved populations or minorities.  The UM Graduate School maintains a list of fellowship and granting opportunities.

Does UM provide health insurance?
Graduate students at UM are required to carry health insurance.  If you do not have your own insurance, you may purchase insurance through the university.  Once admitted, entering graduate students are eligible for a 60% waiver of the health insurance fee, rates for which are set annually, and are responsible for the remainder. Information about health insurance can be found on the Graduate School website.

I’m most interested in pursuing environmental science research.  Is this the right graduate program for me?
We are an interdisciplinary program, so those who are best suited for our program have an interest in framing research questions with both natural and social science components, or that examine environmental issues in terms of educational, communications, historical, or other perspectives.  If you are strictly interested in intensive scientific research, other programs will probably be a better fit for you.

I have a stronger background in the Humanities than in social or natural science.  Would I be eligible for this program?
Because the ECM Master’s is an interdisciplinary program, candidates with undergraduate majors in Humanities fields, social sciences, or the sciences are eligible for admission.  We look for those with a strong, cross-disciplinary background that demonstrates an ability to formulate and execute research that draws on multiple methodologies (as appropriate).  For further information on background eligibility for the Exploration Science MPS contact Dr. Keene Haywood.

I have a very clear idea of what I want to do for my thesis project.  How should I proceed?
Please contact the appropriate program director if you would like to discuss whether your project is a good fit for our program.

What are you looking for in the personal statement?
Your 1000-word personal statement should be sufficiently focused (concise) to give us a sense of your interests and previous accomplishments, including any research or field experiences you have had. Try to highlight what you feel are the strongest points on your resume/C.V.  If you have identified specific researchers at the University of Miami with whom you would be interested in working for the ECM MA, you can include that information in your statement.