Admissions

Graduate applications for Fall admissions are due January 1st of that year.  (Our deadline is extended a month beyond USC's general deadline)

There are three steps.

1. USC's Graduate Admissions

You can find the application and information at this website: http://www.usc.edu/admission/graduate/

2. Advisor Selection

After you have successfully completed and submitted your USC Graduate School application in step 1, you should go to http://earth.usc.edu/apply/gradschool to complete the supplemental portion of the application. You can select up to three faculty members as possible advisors in order of preference.  This process is important in our selection process.

3. Contact your potential advisors

After you have successfully steps one and two, go beyond your CV and contact potential advisors to discuss your research interests. 

Graduate Admission Requirements

Prerequisites - An applicant for admission must have the equivalent of the courses in earth sciences, chemistry, mathematics, and physics required for the B.S. degree in geological sciences. Applicants with an undergraduate degree in other sciences or engineering who lack required earth sciences courses will also be given consideration.

For questions about pre-requisites and other qualifications, please contact the Graduate Faculty Advisor, Prof. Steve Lund , at slund.usc.edu

Academic Record - An applicant must have a strong undergraduate background and a superior academic record as documented by GPAs in undergraduate and graduate work.

Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) scores are required for admission. Scores must be no more than five years old. The Graduate School requires a Verbal and Quantitative combined score that is a minimum of 300. Subject tests are not required.

Reference Letters - Three letters of recommendation (minimum) from undergraduate and/or graduate advisors and professors must be provided.


  • Zumberge Hall of Science (ZHS)
  • Los Angeles, CA 90089-0740
  • Phone: (213) 740-6106
  • Email: earthsci@usc.edu