Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some answers to questions we get commonly:
MY GRES/GRADES/LETTERS WON’T ARRIVE ON TIME. WILL I BE TOO LATE TO BE ACCEPTED?
We do not review applications until they are complete. If your application looks promising at a preliminary review, but is not yet complete, we will track its progress but it may decrease the likelihood of you getting a first-round offer.
DO YOU ACCEPT LATE APPLICATIONS?
We do accept late applications but we typically do not review them unless we have a late or unexpected opening in our upcoming class. If you want to apply late, be sure that you have discussed this ahead of time with one of our faculty members so we are alerted; otherwise we may not even know that the application has been submitted. Please note that we do not have a rolling admissions policy and it is the exception, not the rule, to consider late applications.
WHAT ARE THE TYPICAL GRES AND GRES OF STUDENTS WHO GET OFFERS TO YOUR PROGRAM?Recent averages are as follows:
- GPA: 3.4 (the Eberly College minimum undergrad GPA is 3.0)
- GREs: A combined score of about 300-310 or higher combined verbal and quantitative in the new scoring system.
MY (GRES/GRADES/OTHER) AREN’T GREAT BUT ….. IS IT STILL WORTH APPLYING?
When we review applications we look at the entire package, not a single item. So if you didn’t do well on the GREs, but have a strong record otherwise, you’ll still be considered. We view other factors positively as well (work experience, undergraduate research, recommendations, quality of background/school, etc.).
I’M NOT A GEOLOGIST BY BACKGROUND, CAN I STILL APPLY?
Yes, we accept applications from outside of geology. However, we require all MS students to complete the equivalent of a geology degree which means it takes students changing fields longer to complete their degree than it takes the geologists. If you are considering doing this, you should probably talk to us first. You can find the list of undergraduate classes under M.S. Program
I’D LIKE TO APPLY FOR A TEACHING/RESEARCH ASSISTANTSHIP – WHAT DO I HAVE TO DO?
All applications for admission are considered for funding so you don’t have to do anything special beyond applying. It is rare for us to accept a graduate student without providing funding for them.
CAN YOU COVER MY TRAVEL COSTS TO VISIT?Sorry, but we don’t have travel funds for perspective MS students. We can sometimes provide limited funds for students applying for the PhD program. This would be coordinated through your potential PhD Advisor.
IS MY FILE COMPLETE? ... OR ANY QUESTION RELATED TO THE APPLICATION DOCUMENT…
You can see most of this information on the Hobson’s electronic admissions system, except the status of transcript or GREscores (we’re hoping they get that solved soon!). If you need to know more, please contact the administrative person in charge of applications for the dept. (see below).
DO YOU ACCEPT GRAD STUDENTS FOR JANUARY ADMISSION?
We sometimes accept a small number of new graduate students for spring semester. We typically don’t know if we are taking new students until November or December.
I APPLIED TO YOUR PROGRAM BUT HAVEN’T HEARD BACK FROM YOU YET. IT’S MARCH AND I’M GETTING CONCERNED.We make our first-round offers around mid-February. Once we hear back from those students (accept/decline) we typically extend a 2nd round of offers. Until our fall class is full, we keep all applications open. If you didn’t get an offer but want to know your status, feel free to email. Don’t be too discouraged if you get a 2nd round offer. Some of our best students have come to us from this pool!
CAN I TAKE GRADUATE CLASSES AS A NON-DEGREE STUDENT?WVU allows non-degree students to take classes. This can be a great way to learn about a new subject, fill in some background classes, or just try out something new. However, being accepted as a WVU non-degree student does not mean you have been admitted to the Geology Graduate Program. To do that, you need to apply directly to the geology graduate program. Having been a non-degree student neither helps nor hinders your application to the geology program. If you do decide to apply to the department after having taken classes as a non-degree student, please note that no more than 12 credits can be transferred into a degree program.http://grad.wvu.edu/academics/catalog_handbook/faq_and_definitions/general_faq#8)
I HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED AS A NON-DEGREE STUDENT, WHAT CLASSES SHOULD I TAKE?
We do not offer formal advising of non-degree students. So if you have questions, the best thing to do is for you to contact the faculty members who teach the specific classes that interest you.
I APPLIED FOR ADMISSION BUT WAS NOT ACCEPTED OR CHANGED MY MIND REGARDING THE TIMING. CAN I HAVE MY APPLICATION CONSIDERED FOR A DIFFERENT START DATE?
Yes, you can have your application date changed once (after which you will need to reapply). To have a different application start-date, send us an email with a formal request. These should be sent to the following email address: Hope.Stewart@mail.wvu.edu