Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Admissions Procedure

All applicants are encouraged to review the requirements for the Primary and Co-discipline(s) by visiting the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. website. It is recommended that applicants talk to the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Discipline Coordinators in their areas of interest BEFORE applying to the program. Discipline Coordinators offer valuable program, academic and application information.

Please read through all steps below before beginning your application!

Step One:

Complete the UMKC Web Application.

  • “Create an account” to start a new application.
  • Select your intended academic plan (major) as “Interdisciplinary Studies PhD”
  • Then select your “Primary Discipline” from the drop-down menu. A list of Participating Disciplines is available on the School of Graduate Studies website.
    • If you are applying to one of the following primary discipline areas, you must select a “Co-discipline”. (For example, primary discipline = Music Education and co-discipline = Curriculum and Instruction)
      • Art History
      • Biomedical and Health Informatics
      • Curriculum and Instruction
      • Educational Leadership, Policy and Foundations
      • English
      • Entrepreneurship and Innovation
      • History
      • Music Education
    • If you are applying to one of the following primary discipline areas, you do NOT need to select a “Co-discipline” area, if you are deciding between one of the co-disciplines that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the Primary discipline. These primary disciplines include:
      • Cell Biology and Biophysics (CBB)
      • Chemistry
      • Computer Science
      • Economics
      • Electrical & Computer Engineering (ECE)
      • Engineering
      • Geosciences
      • Mathematics
      • Molecular Biology and Biochemistry (MBB)
      • Oral & Craniofacial Sciences
      • Pharmaceutical Science
      • Pharmacology
      • Physics
      • Public Affairs and Administration
      • Telecommunications & Computer Networking

Step Two:

Upload your supplementary materials within the application system. Supplemental materials for Interdisciplinary Ph.D. applicants should be uploaded as .PDFs. Below are the required documents:

  • Graduate Records Exam (GRE) scores
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores (International applicants)
  • Official transcripts
  • Narrative statement / Statement of intent
  • Resume / Vita
  • Three letters of recommendation (The applicant provides referee contact information in the Application site. The referee receives an email invitation to upload the reference letter into the site.)
  • Writing sample (not required of all disciplines, check applicable discipline requirements at IPhD Studies) Please note: the narrative statement is NOT the same as the writing sample.

Official transcripts should be sent directly to the UMKC Admissions Offices. Please check with the Admissions Office (domestic applicants) or the International Student Affairs Office (ISAO – international applicants) regarding the receipt of your official transcript(s). Your application cannot be reviewed until official transcripts have been received.

Test scores should be sent directly to UMKC from ETS-Institution code: 6872

Waiver requests for TOEFL/IELTS/GRE: Applicants must talk with the Interdisciplinary Ph.D Discipline Coordinators in their areas of interest BEFORE requesting a waiver for the official test score requirements. After talking with the Coordinators, a waiver request can be submitted in writing through the Application site. Upload your waiver request in a PDF format. Choose “Other” for the document type listed in the drop down menu.

If you have questions regarding the application process, please contact the School of Graduate Studies at 816-235-1301 or umkcsgs@umkc.edu.

Additional Information

1. The deadlines for applications to the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. program vary by discipline. All application materials must be uploaded, and test scores and official transcripts must be received in Admission Offices by the earliest discipline deadline. (For example, if one discipline’s deadline is February 1st and the other March 15th, then application materials must be received by the February 1st deadline.)

2. The timeline for applicants to expect admission decisions varies by discipline. Most admission decisions are made approximately four to six weeks after the latest deadline. For example, if one discipline deadline is February 1st and the other March 15th, an admission decision should be received, approximately, by April 15th to April 30th.

3. Applicants will be notified of admission decisions by mail. Newly admitted international applicants will receive necessary admission documentation by courier service from the International Student Affairs Office.

4. Admission decisions cannot be provided over the telephone.


To review the UMKC Catalog’s information for each discipline, visit: http://catalog.umkc.edu/colleges-schools/graduate-studies/interdisciplinary-phd-program/