Graduate Application Information

The Odum School of Ecology only accepts students for admission in the fall semester of each academic year. The application process for international students has different requirements, please see our documentation.

  1. Once you have identified one or more faculty within the Odum School of Ecology with whom you might be interested in working, contact them regarding your interests. Applicants are not considered for admission unless they have contacted a faculty member within the Odum School of Ecology who will agree to serve as a major advisor should the student be accepted. Please list your potential major professors at the end of your personal statement.
  2. All application materials and supporting documents should be submitted by December 1.
  3. Formal application to the Odum School of Ecology begins with the submission of an application at the UGA Graduate School Application website.

Application Fee

The fee of $75 must be submitted to the Graduate School before your (domestic) application can be evaluated. We are unable to waive this fee for anyone due to University regulations. International application fees are $100.


Please be sure to have your application and supporting documents submitted to the Odum School of Ecology and the Graduate School by December 1. This deadline enables our faculty to complete their reviews and make admission recommendations to the Graduate School’s Office of Graduate Admissions. Applicants who have applied by this date, and have been nominated by a potential major professor, will be considered for funding to attend the graduate student recruitment weekend and Graduate Student Symposium in January. The Odum School of Ecology Graduate Program Committee meets in mid-December to review completed applications and select 15-20 highly qualified applicants for travel to this invite-only event. Applicants are notified of admission decisions by April 1-15.


Letters of Recommendation

Three letters of recommendation must be submitted using the online recommendation form from the Graduate School: you must provide a valid e-mail address for each recommender. Please make sure that your recommenders have indicated that they are willing to fill out a reference form for you in advance. Also keep in mind that it is your responsibility to ensure that your recommender has submitted the form by the appropriate deadline. Your recommender will receive an email notification with login information when you enter your recommender’s information and click the submit button for that field.

Statement of Interest

Please write a brief research statement (one page, single-spaced) describing your graduate educational and research goals. This statement carries great weight in the admissions decisions and should identify your general area(s) of interest, articulate the fundamental concepts that underlie those interests, outline potential research problems, and specify your career objectives. Included in your research statement your purpose for pursuing a graduate degree. Your statement should be well-organized and concise, demonstrate your ability to articulate important problems in your discipline, and identify your research interests. Please list your potential major professors at the end of your personal statement.


An unofficial transcript is required from each institution of higher education attended, whether or not you earned a degree. UGA transcripts are not required for previous UGA attendance. If you are currently enrolled, provide the last expected date of enrollment. If recommended for admission, applicants will be asked to submit ONE OFFICIAL copy to the Graduate School.

Supplemental Essays for I.D.E.A.S. program and for I.C.O.N. Program

Instructions for IDEAS Supplemental Essay (IDEAS Program Applicants Only)

Please provide a supplemental essay discussing your motivation for applying to the IDEAS program. The essay should describe how your background had prepared you for the IDEAS training, and how the program aligns with your future research and career goals. Please limit to 500 words. This is to be uploaded onto page 4 of the UGA graduate application.

Please visit the IDEAS website for more information:

Instructions for ICON essay (ICON Program Applicants only)

Please 1) describe how you envision the ICON PhD Program providing you with training or experiences that are different than a traditional disciplinary-based PhD program in your chosen field, and 2) briefly share your ideas – be they general or specific – about your intended integrative research project or your previous experience with integrative work. Please limit your response to 600 words.

3) Finally, please list your preferred faculty advisor. We depend heavily on a prospective advisor’s interest in applicants in the selection process. We strongly encourage you to speak with your prospective advisor before applying. Download PDF

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