Montana State University

Frequently Asked Questions

Graduate Studies: Admissions

I don't know what programs you offer. Who is the best person to tell me about general MSU graduate degrees?

The Division of Graduate Education website is an excellent resource to help you identify a potential graduate program. Our website lists all of the advanced degrees offered at MSU and links to all graduate departments and programs. The website can be accessed at If you have chosen a particular program that you are interested in, please contact the department directly for specific information about the graduate program(s) offered by the department. It may be in your best interest to set up an appointment with a graduate coordinator or advisor in the degree-granting department.

Can the TOEFL be waived?

All international graduate students applying to degree programs at Montana State University are required to take the TOEFL exam, except those who have earned a degree (bachelorís, masterís, or doctoral) from a United States institution, or from a College or University located in a country in which English is the official language.

Do you offer interdisciplinary degrees?

The Division of Graduate Education at Montana State University offers the following interdisciplinary degree programs: Environmental Engineering (MS), Land Rehabilitation (MS), Science Education (MS), Environmental and Ecological Statistics (MS), Ecology and Environmental Sciences (PhD), Molecular Biosciences (PhD), and Science and Natural-History Filmmaking (MFA). Many departments allow interdisciplinary courses to be included on a graduate degree program. (See individual department for specific information.)

What is the status of my application?

If you have submitted a graduate application to your department and are awaiting an admissions decision, contact your department first to make sure that your application is complete and has been submitted to the Division of Graduate Education. If you believe that your application has been sent from the department to the Division of Graduate Education, and a letter has not reached you, please contact the Division of Graduate Education. If you have completed a non-degree application, admission is automatic with the receipt of a bachelorís degree. Please allow at least 5 working days for the processing of your non-degree application.

What do I need to do to change to a different degree program/different department?

If you are currently enrolled in a graduate degree program at MSU, please contact the Division of Graduate Education directly for information on changing degree programs or departments. Changes to your current degree program or department may require additional application materials.

Can the GRE be waived?

The requirement for graduate students to take the GRE exam is a Department and Program specific requirement. Please contact the department to inquire whether the GRE is required for entrance to a program. There is no waiver if the department requires the GRE exam.

Can my application fee be waived?

The application fee can not be waived. (Some departments may choose to pay for a student's application fee. Please contact your academic department to see if this is a possibility.) The non-degree application fee will not, in any circumstance, be waived.

What are the application deadlines?

Degree Applications: Please contact the department to which you are applying for their specific deadlines. Non-Degree Applications: Domestic Students-Fall Semester-September 10, Spring Semester-January 31, Summer Semester-June 30, International Students-Fall Semester-May 15, Spring Semester-October 1, Summer Semester-February 1

Where do I need to send my application materials?

All degree applications and materials must be submitted directly to the department to which you are applying. Upon receipt of all application materials, the department will review your qualifications and make an admissions status recommendation. This will be forwarded to the Division of Graduate Education for final formal review and decision. The Division of Graduate Education will review only complete applications that include the non-refundable application fee. Non-degree graduate applications and materials must be submitted directly to the Division of Graduate Education. Acceptance as a non-degree graduate student is automatic upon completion of a bachelorís degree. The application must be accompanied by an official (sealed) transcript showing receipt of a bachelorís degree. There is a $50 online/$60 paper application fee for a non-degree application that must be paid upon submission to the graduate office.