Admission to the PhD program is based on primarily on academic records, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement. Application materials for the fall of 2024 must be received by December 15, 202`3. However, applicants who wish to be considered for the Vivien Thomas Scholars Initiative must submit their application by December 1, 2023. Preliminary admissions decisions will be made in January 2024. All applicants will be notified of the admissions committee’s decision by email.

The Department of Mathematics values diversity among its members, is committed to building a diverse intellectual community, and strongly encourages applications from all interested parties.

Via the online application, applicants should submit:

  • A Statement of Purpose
  • An optional Personal Statement
  • Transcripts from all institutions attended
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Official TOEFL scores (if English is not your first language)

Submission of GRE Math subject scores is optional. The department views GRE Math subject scores as useful information. For applications which do not include these scores, more weight will be placed on the other elements of the application. Applicants who choose to self-report a GRE Math Subject score need not send an official score report at time of application; we will request verification only if you are accepted to the program.

The required Statement of Purpose discusses your academic interests, objectives, and preparation. The optional Personal Statement describes your personal background, and helps us create a more holistic understanding of you as an applicant. If you wish you may also discuss your personal background in the Statement of Purpose (e.g. if you have already written a single essay addressing both topics), instead of submitting separate statements.

Application fee waivers are available based on financial need and/or participation in certain programs.

No application materials should be mailed to the department. All application materials are processed by the Graduate Admissions Office.


Senior Academic Program Coordinator
[email protected]

Undergraduate Background

The following is an example of what the math department would consider a good background for a student coming out of a four-year undergraduate program at a college or university in the U.S. (assuming a semester system):

  • Calculus in one variable (two semesters, or AP credits)
  • Multivariable Calculus (one semester)
  • Linear Algebra (one semester)
  • Complex analysis (one semester)
  • Real analysis (two semesters)
  • Abstract algebra (two semesters)
  • Point-set topology (one semester)

Many admitted students have taken upper-level undergraduate mathematics courses or graduate courses. Nevertheless, the department does admit very promising students whose preparation falls a little short of the above model. In such cases, we strongly recommend that the student start to close the gap over the summer, before arriving for the start of the fall semester.

Financial Support   

All students admitted to the PhD program receive support that includes a stipend, full tuition, and additional benefits. Students making satisfactory progress are guaranteed this support for five years. A sixth year of support is generally possible for students who are on track to complete their Ph.D. and would benefit from the additional year. Ph.D. students at JHU are unionized, and their stipends and benefits are specified in the union’s collective bargaining agreement; here is a summary.

Exceptional applicants are considered for the George E. Owen Fellowship, a supplementary fellowship that provides $6,000 each year for three years.

Students from underrepresented groups may be eligible for other university-wide supplemental fellowships. Summer teaching is available for students seeking extra income.

We recognize that it can be financially burdensome to relocate to a new city to attend a PhD program. Students who are accepted to PhD programs at JHU can apply to receive a need-based grant to offset the costs of relocating to JHU. Find out how to apply for the grant.

Useful Links

Additional Information for International Students

Student Visa Information: The Office of International Services at Homewood will assist admitted international students in obtaining a student visa.

English Proficiency: Johns Hopkins University requires students to have adequate English proficiency for their course of study. Students must be able to read, speak, and write English fluently upon their arrival at the university. Applicants whose native language is not English must submit proof of their proficiency in English before they can be offered admission and before a visa certificate can be issued. Proficiency can be demonstrated by submitting results from either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the IELTS. Johns Hopkins prefers a minimum score of 100 on the TOEFL or a Band Score of 7 on the IELTS. Results should be sent to Johns Hopkins directly by TOEFL or IELTS. Applicants taking the IELTS must additionally upload a copy of their score through the application system. However, do not send the student copy or a photocopy of the TOEFL.

Vivien Thomas PhD Scholars

The Vivien Thomas Scholars Initiative (VTSI) is an endowed fellowship program at Johns Hopkins for STEM PhD students. It provides full tuition, stipend, benefits, targeted mentoring, and professional development. Students who have attended a historically black college and university or other minority serving institution for undergraduate study are eligible.

There is no additional application. To be considered for the VTSI, all components of the PhD application, including supplemental components, special VSTI questions, and letters of recommendation must be completed by December 1, 2023, even if the program deadline is later.