Rice goes GRE-optional for grad programs, will grant fee waivers to graduates of Texas schools

Academic Quad at sunrise aerial. Photo by Brandon Martin

Photo by Brandon Martin

Rice is eliminating the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) standardized test requirement for its 2021 graduate programs.

“Rice doesn’t have a universitywide GRE requirement, although many degree programs have required the exam,” said Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Seiichi Matsuda. “Because COVID-19 has made it difficult for many students to take the GRE, all of our graduate programs have agreed to go GRE-optional this year.”

Rice joins a number of U.S. graduate programs that have temporarily suspended the GRE requirement. The coronavirus pandemic forced examinations usually administered worldwide by the Educational Testing Service to be postponed or canceled.

Matsuda said each degree program at Rice can define whether to describe its approach as GRE-optional, GRE-optional-but-recommended or GRE-optional-but-strongly-recommended. Prospective students should check with their program of application for details.

Rice will also waive application fees for doctoral applicants who are graduates of institutions in Texas and bordering states Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma and New Mexico or who have a permanent address in these states.

“People who are applying to graduate school have worked hard and we want to make applying a little easier,” Matsuda said. “Rice attracts applications from around the country and around the world. We’ve decided to eliminate the application fee for the immediate region as a way to encourage people in the local community to continue with their education.”

Rice graduate applications will open soon, and prospective students can apply by visiting gradapply.rice.edu. Graduate degrees at Rice are offered in the following programs:

  • Accounting
  • Anthropology
  • Applied Chemical Sciences
  • Applied Physics
  • Architecture
  • Art History
  • Biochemistry and Cell Biology
  • Bioengineering
  • Bioscience and Health Policy
  • Biosciences
  • Business
  • Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
  • Chemistry
  • Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Computational Science and Engineering
  • Computational and Applied Mathematics
  • Computer Science
  • Earth, Environmental and Planetary Sciences
  • Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
  • Economics
  • Education
  • Electrical and Computer Engineering
  • Energy Economics
  • English
  • Environmental Analysis
  • Global Affairs
  • History
  • Human-Computer Interaction and Human Factors
  • Industrial Engineering
  • Liberal Studies
  • Materials Science and NanoEngineering
  • Mathematics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Music
  • Philosophy
  • Physics
  • Political Science
  • Psychological Sciences
  • Religion
  • Science Teaching
  • Sociology
  • Space Studies
  • Statistics
  • Subsurface Geoscience
  • Systems, Synthetic and Physical Biology

About Katharine Shilcutt

Katharine Shilcutt is a media relations specialist in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.