Apply to Our Master’s Degree Programs

The official UEP admissions page can be found at this link, which contains the most up-to-date information on applying to our Master’s Degree programs. To help make sense of the process, we’ve compiled some relevant resources for the 2020-21 application cycle below, including a new FAQ section. Click the links below to skip to a specific section:

More information about our four degree programs, plus interdisciplinary/dual degree and combined BA/MA options, can be found here. If you still can’t find what you’re looking for, fill out a brief form with your inquiry here.


Fall 2022 Entry

January 15, 2022

  • M.A. in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning
  • M.S. in Environmental Policy and Planning
  • M.S. in Sustainability
  • Master of Public Policy for mid-career professionals (full- & part-time options)
  • Tufts undergraduate juniors only*: Environmental Policy and Planning, B.A./M.S. & B.S./M.S. (4+1 program)
  • Tufts undergraduate juniors only*: Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning, B.S./M.A. & B.A./M.A (4+1 program)

August 1, 2022 (part-time track only)

  • M.A. in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning
  • M.S. in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning
  • Master of Public Policy for mid-career professionals

Spring 2022 Entry

December 15, 2021 (part-time track only)

  • M.A. in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning
  • M.S. in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning
  • Master of Public Policy for mid-career professionals

*Unlike some other Tufts graduate programs, UEP only accepts juniors through the combined degree 4+1 program.

Materials Required

As stated here, all applicants to programs in the Tufts Graduate School of Arts and Sciences are required to submit the following materials:

  1. Online application for admission
  2. Scanned copies of all college transcripts
  3. Letters of Recommendation: one for certificate programs, two for the engineering management program, and three for all other degree programs
  4. Résumé or Curriculum Vitae
  5. Personal statement elaborating on your reasons for wanting to pursue graduate study at Tufts
  6. Application fee of $85

Learn more about each requirement, including who is eligible for application fee waivers, here. The link to the application form is here, with further instructions provided here.

For all UEP programs, the GRE test score requirement has been waived for the 2020-21 application cycle. GRE test scores will not be considered during application review.


Racial Equity in Policy and Planning (REPP) Fellowship: Starting in Fall 2022, the REPP fellowship will support five BIPOC students a year in our MA/MS program to develop their leadership in the field. The REPP program promotes racial justice in the public policy and planning fields. Dismantling and remedying the deep-seated historical inequities that policy and planning has contributed to means changing how policy and planning is practiced, as well as who is doing the work. To be considered for the REPP Fellowship, applicants must first apply to and be admitted to the MA/MS program. Learn more here.

Neighborhood Fellows: The Neighborhood Fellows (NF) program recruits up to five experienced urban leaders each year to UEP’s mid-career Master in Public Policy (M.P.P.) program. Its objective is to increase enrollment among people of color who work in urban communities in Boston and surrounding cities on issues of urban community politics, economics, education, housing, and social life. Fellows receive a full-tuition waiver for the M.P.P. degree. Fellows must demonstrate deep experience and significant leadership in their work with urban communities. Learn more here.


Do I need to have a faculty advisor before I apply?

No. However, do look at faculty profiles. You’re welcome to reach out to faculty whose work interests you. Additionally, mentioning faculty who align with your interests in your application will help us see how you see yourself fitting in at UEP.

Whom should my letters of recommendation come from?

People who know you, your work, and what drives you. We use letters of recommendation to assess readiness for graduate-level work and overall potential to succeed in this program. Faculty recommendations can be helpful for demonstrating this, particularly if you have recently graduated. Letters of recommendation from folks who know your work, volunteering, organizing and other parts of your life can also speak to your work and what motivates you.

What career or professional development sources are available for UEP students?

The Tufts Graduate School of Arts and Sciences has dedicated career services for graduate students, and regularly holds events and networking opportunities, as explained on our department website. Within UEP, there are opportunities to reach out to program alumni working in your field of interest through core courses such as Foundations of Public Policy and Planning. In the Field Projects practicum, small groups of students also work directly for local organizations to produce substantive research. In addition, our semester-long colloquium series brings in a variety of speakers from other universities or departments, providing informal networking opportunities, while our internship requirement gives yet another opportunity for hands-on planning and/or policy work.

Curious to see where alumni end up working? Find some stories of alumni here, and learn about their recent accomplishments here.

Is UEP just for urban planners?

Actually, UEP students cover a broad range of work backgrounds and interests. From its founding in 1973, the department has focused on the study of urban, social, and environmental policy, a mix which eventually grew to include planning as well. Thanks to our dual and joint degree options, we also have a healthy smattering of students with interests in nutrition science, food justice, environmental engineering, international development, and other topics.

Recent nominees and winners of the department’s thesis awards include an exploration of a “multi-species” framework for ecological restoration, equity implications of a new subway fare collection system, research on farm to school program participation, and a study of the health impacts of air pollution in China. Our blog regularly features exemplary student work, which can be explored thematically by clicking tags of interest at the bottom of each post.

Tell me more about the Sustainability program.

The M.S. in Sustainability focuses on UEP’s environment-related offerings. The course requirements overlap somewhat with the M.A. and M.S. programs in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning, but can be completed in a shorter span of time. Similar to our other programs, the Sustainability M.S. is a professional degree which seeks to equip students with concrete skills.

You can hear from a recent graduate of the program in this short video post, and learn more about admitted students in the entering class of 2020 here.

What’s the difference between the M.A. in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning and the M.S. in Environmental Policy and Planning?

For both programs, core course requirements and the expected length of time for completion are the same. Similarly, students can choose to enroll in either program in a full-time or part-time capacity. However, the thesis completed for the M.S. degree must be related to sustainability and environmental issues. In addition, students in this program may choose to enroll in courses which are more closely related to these fields.

Are there prerequisites for UEP’s programs?

All of our programs require entering students to demonstrate some algebra and graphing skills. You can read about how to fulfill this prerequisite here (scroll down to “Quantitative Prerequisite”). The guidelines are the same for M.S. Sustainability and Master of Public Policy (M.P.P.) students. In addition, the M.P.P. program is designed for applicants who have at least seven years of relevant professional experience.

UEP’s various interdisciplinary and joint degrees may have additional requirements; learn more about those programs here. Current Tufts undergraduates who fulfill certain qualifications can also apply for a combined Bachelor’s/Master’s degree with UEP.

Can I apply to UEP if I studied [insert major here] in undergrad?

It really depends. As mentioned in the previous question, all of our programs have entry requirements. However, students come from a broad variety of study and work backgrounds. For a sampling of this, check out our profiles of new students in the M.A. and M.S. programs, as well as our M.P.P.-related posts. We welcome people with a wide array of experiences, and there is no single prototype for a typical UEP student.

Where can I find the university’s latest updates on safety measures related to COVID-19?

Tufts has a centralized website for all COVID-19 news, which can be found here. Scroll down on the homepage to find the latest updates on the university’s safety measures, and find information about arrival and surveillance testing on this page. As of December 2020, the university has not yet released plans for the 2021-22 academic year.