We seek excellent, motivated students from a variety of backgrounds. An undergraduate degree and/or professional experience in the earth or planetary sciences is beneficial, but it is not a requirement for graduate admission to our department. We encourage applications from interested students with undergraduate degrees in any of the physical and biological sciences, mathematics, and engineering.

If you would like to join our department as a graduate student, please follow these few steps to apply for admission. The deadline for fall admission is January 1. The Fall 2021 application is now open.

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  1. Though not a requirement, we recommend that you directly contact the department faculty members whose research programs interest you.
  2. You must prepare a graduate student application to Johns Hopkins University.

A complete PhD application consists of:

  • Statement of purpose (1–2 pages)
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Transcripts from all colleges/universities attended
  • GRE scores are not accepted for PhD applications to the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences
  • TOEFL or IELTS – JHU code: 5332. Scores of tests taken within the last two years are required for those applicants whose native language is not English. You can receive a waiver if you attended an English-speaking university in one of the following countries: Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Bermuda, Botswana, Canada (except Quebec), Cayman Islands, Dominica, Fiji, Gambia, Ghana, Grenada, Guyana, Ireland, Isle of Mann, Jamaica, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Namibia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Singapore, South Sudan, St. Helena, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Swaziland, Tanzania, Trinidad-Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States, Zambia, Zimbabwe.  If there is another reason you would qualify for a waiver please contact
  • Online application and application fee ($75, paid by credit card) Note: JHU can waive the application fee in certain circumstances. For further questions about application fee waivers for financial hardship reasons, please contact Jenny Seat at

If you experience problems accessing the online application, please contact the Graduate Admissions Office.

For additional information, email Jenny Seat at Indicate in your email whether you are applying as a U.S. student or an international student. Note that the application deadline is January 1 to be considered for matriculation in the fall semester.

Applicants’ files are maintained by the department, and admission decisions are made by departmental faculty committees. Inquiries regarding the status of an application should be made directly to Jenny Seat at