Department of Physics

East Hall, 2 Lippitt Road, Kingston, RI 02881


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Graduate Admission Information

How to Apply

To apply for graduate study at URI, follow the online application process at the URI Graduate School website. Paper applications are not accepted. All applicants are automatically considered for financial aid in the form of Teaching or Research Assistantships when their applications are received by the specified deadlines; no special aid application is necessary.


Applicants must hold a baccalaureate degree, preferably with a major in physics. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE), including the advanced test in physics, is recommended but not required. To be accepted as a graduate degree candidate, applicants should have maintained an average of approximately B (3.0/4.0 scale) in their undergraduate work. Applicants with undergraduate averages below this level, but not less than 2.0, may be admitted by submitting other evidence of academic potential; i.e., satisfactory performance in post-baccalaureate work, professional experience as evidenced by publications or letters of recommendation, and/or high test scores.

Language Proficiency

Foreign students must pass the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or an equivalent test. Information about what tests are accepted and the relevant scores are listed on the Graduate School website. You can also find out information about international students who are not required to take a language proficiency exam.

Recommendation letters

There is no set format for recommendation letters, which can either be submitted online or sent to the Department either by the applicant (in sealed and signed envelopes) or directly by the letter’s author. For further information, contact the Department of Physics ( or the Graduate Program Director Prof. Leonard Kahn( at the Department of Physics, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI 02881.


To receive full consideration,domestic and international students should submit applications before February 15th for September admission and July 15th for January admission.

Cost & Financial Aid

Tuition and fees are set on an academic-year basis and are lower for residents of Rhode Island than for out-of-state students.

Financial aid is available to students in several forms:

Graduate Assistantships are the most common form of support for entering students. Duties usually consist of about six contact hours as a laboratory instructor in an elementary course. Graduate Assistantships are usually renewable for up to six years for the Ph.D. students in good standing. This means grades not less than C in all courses with the minimum grade average of B, active participation in one of the departmental research programs starting from the summer of the first year, and taking the qualifying exam after the first three semesters at URI.

Graduate Research Assistantships are awarded, usually to advanced students, for work on a specific research project under the supervision of a particular professor. Stipends for assistantships depend on the students level. Stipends are given for a nine-month academic-year term, but with additional summer salary generally available.

Fellowships and Scholarships are awarded by the Graduate School to outstanding students in Doctor of Philosophy programs from among nominees selected by the department chairperson. Scholarships for tution and fees only are occasionally available to otherwise unsupported students. Neither fellowships nor scholarships require any formal duties.

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