Graduate Application Information

Graduate Admission Requirements

Students admitted into our graduate program have at least a 3.0 GPA in undergraduate work or an appropriate MS program; Competitive Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores (50th percentile for verbal and quantitative, and 3.5 or above for analytical). Letters of recommendation and previous work experience are also weighed in the application review process. If an applicant meets our academic guidelines, one professor in FSHN must agree to act as major adviser for the student to be admitted. Therefore, not all qualified applicants can be admitted. Because of a recent change in policy, outstanding candidates may apply directly for the PhD program if they have obtained a BS degree. Decisions about direct admission into the PhD program will be made by the Graduate Affairs Committee.

What You Need To Know Before You Apply

Decisions regarding acceptance is made following consideration of the applicant’s academic record, experience, personal qualifications and proposed program of study.  Admission to Michigan State University graduate programs is open to all candidates on the basis of: 1) academic preparation and ability and 2) availability of financial resources, laboratory facilities and faculty with willingness and space to take additional students in the desired area of study.

Admission is open without regard to race, color, sex, religion, creed, national origin, political persuasion, sexual preference, marital status, handicap, age, or (in the case of U.S. citizens or permanent residents) financial needs.

Please note: We have a limited number of openings for students. Before filling out the applications and paying the application fees, it may be to your advantage to contact faculty members in your specific area of interest to determine if there is a faculty member available who has an opening and is willing to take you into their group. Faculty contact information and areas of interest are available under research on our Web site.

Timing of Application

  • Fall enrollment applications are due: April 15th
    • Applicants are urged to apply by mid-Fall to be considered for any departmental funding, laboratory space and competitive University fellowships.
  • Spring enrollment applications are due: August 15th
  • Summer enrollment applications are due: January 15th   

Application Procedures

  1. Application Materials
    Upload the following application materials directly to the MSU Office of Admissions website: Application for Admission to Graduate Study
    • Transcripts
    • Statement of Purpose (Your past, present, and future experience/plans in Food Science & Human Nutrition. Some information may be presented as a CV.)
    • GRE General Score
      (ETS codes: 1465 for MSU)
    • TOEFL Score (International Applicants)
      Additional Information:
    • We accept photocopies of test scores in order to review applications, but we must receive official scores for students who receive an offer of admission to be admitted..
    • International applicants from non-English speaking countries are required to take either the TOEFL in order to have their application reviewed. 
    • We must have official transcripts from every university or college that you have ever attended. International applicants must include official transcripts translated into English. Please send to the Food Science & Human Nutrition Department.
    • If graduated with a degree, we also need a certification of graduation or degree granting diploma.
    • Chinese students must obtain verification of transcripts and graduation certificates from the China Academic Degrees and Graduate Education Development Center (CDGDC).  Students should send copies of their documents along with payment to CDGDC.  The CDGDC verifies grades and degrees and then sends via carrier service directly to the FSHN Department.  Please have documents sent to:

      Michigan State University
      Trout Bldg., FSHN Department
      469 Wilson Rd. Room 106
      East Lansing MI 48824

      Please note that if you are admitted and have not received a degree granting transcript, you will also need to use this process again during your first semester at MSU.
  2. Recommendation Letters

    • The MSU application process will prompt you to provide names and email addresses of your letter writers.  The system will then send a request and link to them to upload a letter.
  3. Status of Application
    Check the status of your application to the graduate program. As soon as we receive your University Application and enter it into our database, a status page is created. The status page indicates what items we have received, and will also indicate a decision once it has been made.

The following codes are used to apply for graduate programs in FSHN:

College of Agriculture and Natural Resources
0354 Food Science M.S.
0355 Food Science Ph.D.
0474 Food Science/Environmental Toxicology Ph.D.
5272 Human Nutrition M.S.
5273 Human Nutrition Ph.D.

 **In completing the online application, use these guidelines  for your Academic and Personal statement**

International Applicants - We encourage international students to apply as early as possible because there is an extended waiting period for visa applications; preferably a year ahead of the semester they wish to enroll in. Click here for additional information