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Departments & Programs


Prospective Students

EESS 2012 Cohort. Top left to right : Michael Tsiang, Neil Tangri, Christina Machak, Alicea Cock-Esteb; Bottom left to right: Grayson Badgley, Katelyn Lewis, Taylor Martin, Emily Cardarelli, and Hans DeJong

The Department of Earth System Science offers Ph.D. and M.S. programs in a wide range of fields, including hydrogeology; ocean circulation; land use change; sustainable food and water practices; climate, tectonics, and landscape evolution; ocean biogeochemistry; climate and earth system dynamics; soil and enivornmental biogeochemistry; molecular microbial ecology; and, geostatistics. The size and the breadth of interest of the department's faculty provide numerous opportunities for field-based research and laboratory and numerical experiments and for the most modern applications of instrumental analysis and spectroscopy to problems in the earth sciences.

To Apply

The application for admission to graduate studies in the Department of Environmental Earth System Science is now available from the Stanford's Graduate Admissions website.

The following items must be received by the deadline of Tuesday, December 16, 2014 by 5 p.m. PST in order to be considered for admission:

  • Statement of purpose
  • Application fee ($125.00 for all applicants)
  • Official Transcripts sent to department address- 2 from each postsecondary institution attended (unofficial transcripts uploaded to the online application cannot be used as substitute)
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • GRE General Test scores*
  • TOEFL scores (if applicable)**

*GRE - The GRE General Test is required. Scores must be from tests taken within the past five years. Scores must be reported directly to Stanford from ETS. The Stanford institutional score recipient number is 4704. Do not selected a department code.

**TOEFL - Applicants whose first language is not English must submit TOEFL scores from a test taken within the last eighteen months. The TOEFL is waived for individuals who have earned a U.S. bachelor's or master's degree from a college or university accredited by a regional accrediting association in the United States or the equivalent of either degree from a non-U.S. college or university of recognized standing where all instruction is provided in English. This exception does not apply if the courses were completed in a country where English is spoken but not all instruction is provided in English. Scores must be reported directly to Stanford from ETS. The Stanford institutional score recipient number is 4704. Do not select a departmental code. 

Departmental requirements
Two official transcripts should be mailed to:

Vanessa Bravo
Earth System Science
473 Via Ortega, Room 140
Stanford, CA 94305-4216


All Ph.D. candidates within ESS are provided full financial support for the first four years and generally for the duration of their doctoral work. There is limited funding for MS students.


For additional information, please contact the EESS Student Services Manager, Vanessa Bravo