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How to apply

Applications are submitted online. If you have questions, please visit the Frequently Asked Questions page or contact us at When you are ready to apply you can get started by submitting an application below.

Start Application


  • Priority application deadline is January 15.
  • Prospective Student Fellowship application deadline is January 15.
  • Final application deadline is April 15.

Required application materials include:

  1. Statement of Purpose (maximum 4,000 characters, including spaces): Your statement of purpose is one of the most important components of your application—it should be well-organized and concise.  Your statement should reflect: your preparation and motivation for the program; interests, career goals; and overall fit for the program.   Please also briefly discuss any current and expected topical specialization (e.g., freshwater, marine, terrestrial, law, policy, economics, etc.).  See the “Statement of Purpose” prompt in the online application for further details. 
  2. Personal History/Diversity Statement (maximum 4,000 characters, including spaces): The purpose of this essay is to get know you as an individual and potential graduate student. Your statement should describe how your personal background informs your decision to pursue a graduate degree. You may include any educational, familial, cultural, economic, or social experiences, challenges, community service, outreach activities, residency and citizenship, first generation college status, or opportunities relevant to your academic journey; how your life experiences contribute to the social, intellectual, or cultural diversity within a campus community and your chosen field; or how you might serve educationally underrepresented and underserved segments of society with your graduate education. This essay should complement but not duplicate the content in the Statement of Purpose.  Students may find helpful UC Berkeley’s Graduate Division guidance on writing a personal statement.
  3. GRE scores are required. Please ask the Educational Testing Service (ETS) to forward electronic scores to Institution code 4834 and Department code 0101.  The ETS will not report test scores that are older than five years. If this applies to you, you should retake the exam.
  4. Academic records are required from each college-level institution you have attended.  You will be instructed to upload scanned copies of your transcripts after you have submitted your online application.  If your official records are not issued in English, you must submit those records in their original language with the authorized complete and exact English translations.  For more details visit do not send official transcripts to the Muir Institute. When it is time to submit official transcripts, you'll receive instructions from Graduate Studies on how to submit them properly. 
  5. Three letters of recommendation must be submitted online through the application system by recommender. Writers of recommendation letters may reflect a mix of backgrounds (academic or employment). Three letters of recommendation are required, but you should seek to include at least two who are qualified to evaluate the quality of your scholastic achievements, academic training and experience. One character or personal recommendation is permissible. It is helpful to tell your references to address those characteristics that are important to your admission.
  6. Resume or Curriculum Vitae: all relevant academic, volunteer, leadership and (in particular) work experience should be included.  The document might also include any relevant information such as internship experiences, exhibitions, publications, travel or study abroad. There is no required formatting style. 
  7. Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores are required if your native language is not English or if your instruction has not been in English.  TOEFL scores should be sent electronically to Institution code 4834 and Department code 67. TOEFL scores expire after two years. Minimum score is 80.  As an alternative, you may submit scores from the Academic Modules of the international English Language Testing System (IELTS).
  8. Prerequisite Course History form: required only for non-STEM degree holders and available in the electronic application.  The form demonstrates coursework covering (A) two quarters (or one semester) of introductory science equivalent, and (B) two quarters (or one semester) of upper division STEM courses.
  9. Application fee: $120 Domestic, $140 International.  The application fee is non-refundable upon submission of the application. The fee must be paid by credit card. The fee must be paid before the application will be considered as complete.

Some important things to note:

  • Supporting materials (letters of recommendation, test scores, etc) need to be submitted no later than one week after the application deadline. If there are issues providing the materials by the deadline, please email 
  • Students are enrolled as cohorts starting each fall (so there are no mid-year enrollments). This program is typically completed in two years but there is an accelerated 12 month option available. 
  • Students are required to have a minimum GPA of 3.0, though exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis.
  • Students will preferably have GRE minimum scores of 60% Quantitative, 60% Verbal and 50% Analytical Writing. 
  • We have a holistic application processes, meaning the Admissions Committee looks at all aspects of a potential student's application including relevant work experience.
  • Admitted graduate students are required to enroll in an English language course (UWP 225 or UWP 226 or equivalent) during their first academic year unless they meet any of the following conditions: 
    • The student has an undergraduate or graduate degree from an approved English-medium institution, as confirmed by the UC Davis Office of Graduate Studies;
    • or the student has a TOEFL (iBT) score of 105 or higher or IELTS score of 7.5 or higher;
    • or the student scored 24 or higher on the TOEFL (iBT) writing and 23 or higher on the TOEFL (iBT) speaking portion of the test. 
    • You may read the entire policy here.
  • For other important information, please see our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page.

Admission Criteria

Acceptance into the M.S. program is based on a review of the applicant's past academic performance. To be considered for admission to the M.S. program, a student must have had a GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.00 scale) or higher in either all upper-division course work or in cumulative study at an accredited institution. Although Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores for the General Test are required for all students, there is no minimum performance required. That is, the entire set of qualifications is considered.

Required Undergraduate Preparation

Before enrolling in graduate courses at Davis, a student should have completed a program of study equivalent to a B.A. or B.S. in a Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM) field.

Students without a prior degree in a STEM field are required to complete preparatory courses, or their equivalents. Students should have a minimum of: 

  1. Two quarters of introductory science equivalent (e.g., Introductory Biology, BIS 2A, BIS 2B). 
  2. Two quarters of upper division STEM courses (e.g., EME 150, Mechanical Design, ABT 150, Intro to GIS).
  3. Prior coursework in economics (intermediate microeconomics) is recommended, but not required. Prerequisite decisions will be made by the admissions committee at the time of application decision.

*Students without a prior degree in a STEM field should fill out the Prerequisite Course History form available in the electronic application, demonstrating two quarters of introductory science equivalent and two quarters of upper division STEM courses.

Faculty Sponsorship

Unlike research-oriented graduate programs, a faculty sponsor is not an element of applying to the EPM program. Admission decisions are made by the Admissions Committee and are not determined by a faculty member's interest in working with a student.


Please see our FAQ. If you do not see the answer to your question, prospective students’ primary contact for information and assistance is the EPM Program Coordinator, Jessica Penrose.