Fall 2019 Application Deadline: December 1, 2018

We are no longer accepting applications for the 2018 - 2019 academic year.

Please contact the Office of Graduate Admissions for information on the 2019 – 2020 academic year’s application process. The fall 2019 application is available July 8, 2018.

Chemistry Open House Weekends:

  • Weekend 1: February 21 - 23, 2019
  • Weekend 2: March 14 - 16, 2019

Biochemistry Recruitment Weekends:

  • Weekend 1: February 20 - 23, 2019
  • Weekend 2: March 6 - 9, 2019

Colorado Advantage Program:

Opportunity for Underrepresented Students: The Colorado Advantage Graduate Preview Weekend provides an opportunity for underrepresented students to visit campus and preview doctoral programs in science, math, and engineering departments at CU-Boulder.

Application Forms

CU Boulder has an online application system.  Please contact us if you have any questions or problems with the online application.

Graduate Records Examination (GRE Test)

The general GRE is required for all applicants. GRE scores for the general test should be in the upper 33% range, and in the upper 50% range for the subject test. We strongly encourage but do not require applicants to take the GRE subject test in Chemistry or Biochemistry.

Our institution code is #4841. The department code for GRE scores is no longer required by CU Boulder, however, if you need to input a code when you take the test please use one of the following department codes for Chemistry and Biochemistry: #0202, 0301, 0302, 0304, 0306, 0399.

You may self-report your GRE scores in your initial application, but the official scores must be sent directly to CU from ETS for the application to be considered complete. Photocopies and personal notices of GRE scores are not considered official.

GPA Requirements

The minimum undergraduate GPA for graduate studies in Chemistry and Biochemistry is 3.0.


In general, all graduate students receive support as teaching assistants in their first year, and as either teaching or research assistants for the duration of their studies (funding dependent on research group). In addition, tuition is paid by the Department at the out-of-state rate for the 1st year (for non-Colorado residents) and thereafter at the in-state rate (for US citizens and permanent residents). International student tuition is fully covered at the adjusted rate set by the Graduate School, as part of the teaching or research assistantships. For further details please contact the Chemistry or Biochemistry Graduate Program Manager.

International Students

We expect all of our students to have excellent oral communication skills. If your native language is not English, all international applicants are required to meet a minimum standard of English proficiency. You will be required to take the TOEFL or an acceptable equivalent examination. For a list of exemptions and countries exempted from TOEFL or IELTS, please consult this link.

The minimum scores for English Language Tests are:

Test Type Score
Internet-based TOEFL 100

The TOEFL department code for the internet-based, computer-based and paper-based test is 62. If your TOEFL score is close but does not meet the departmental minimum a phone interview may be required to determine English communication skills before an offer of admission is made.

Official TOEFL scores must be sent from ETS. Photocopies, are not considered to be official, and cannot be accepted in lieu of the official notification from ETS. You may self-report your scores on the initial application, but please have the scores sent from ETS as soon as possible.

Transfer Students

Students may qualify to transfer up to ten credit hours for their Ph.D. graduate studies. These credit hours cannot have been used toward their undergraduate degree. The transfer credits will be evaluated after the student has been with the department for one semester, and the student must be in good standing.

Master of Science Degree Program

With the exception of active US military students, the Department rarely admits students to the Master's Program.

Checklist of Required Items

  • Complete the appropriate online application e.g. US citizen or permanent resident, or an international applicant (Parts I, II, Recommendation Form, Tuition Classification Form, and for Colorado residents the In-State Tuition Classification).
  • Familiarize yourself with the research interests of the faculty members.
  • Submit the department specific application form with your online application.
  • Take the general GRE test and the subject test in Chemistry or Biochemistry, and have the scores sent directly to the university (for the correct codes see the section on the GRE tests above). Again, we encourage but do not require applicants to take the GRE subject test in Chemistry or Biochemistry.
  • If your native language is not English, take the TOEFL or IELTS test. The TOEFL department code for the internet-based, computer-based and paper-based test is 62.
  • Arrange to have three letters of recommendation on your behalf sent to Graduate Admissions, or submitted online through the online application system as an attached .pdf document on letterhead.
  • For review and decision purposes you are required to upload an unofficial copy of your trancript(s) in the online application.  We require one copy of the scanned transcript from each undergraduate institution. This includes community colleges, summer sessions, and extension programs.  While credits from one institution may appear on the transcript of a second institution, unofficial transcripts must be submitted from each institution, regardless of the length of attendance, and whether or not courses were completed.  Failure to list and submit transcripts from all institutions previously attended is considered to be a violation of academic ethics and may result in the cancellation of your admission or dismissal from the university.  Information on how to upload transcripts may be found using this link: Instructions on how to upload transcripts.
  • If you are an international applicant then please follow any special instructions included in the Graduate School website for prospective International Students.
  • Send all application materials not submitted online to Graduate Admissions, at the following addresses:

Domestic applicants should send application materials to:

  • Graduate Admissions
  • University of Colorado Boulder
  • 553 UCB
  • Boulder, CO 80309-0553

International applicants should send application materials to:

  • Office of International Admissions
  • University of Colorado, Boulder
  • 3100 Marine Street
  • 65 UCB
  • Boulder, CO 80309-0065
  • USA