Application Submission Periods


  • Ph.D.: October 1 - January 8
  • M.S.: October 1 - January 15


  • Ph.D.: June 17 - August 31

Prospective students must be a graduate of materials science and engineering or a related discipline at a recognized university with better than a B average. Admission is based on overall academic performance and potential.

A completed application will include the following:

  • Non-refundable application fee of $75 USD (this fee cannot be waived or deferred)
  • The online application form
  • Letters of recommendation 
    • Ph.D. - 3 required
    • Master's - 1 required, 1 optional 
  • Uploaded unofficial transcripts (Official transcripts will be requested upon admission)
  • Essay questions
  • CV/resume
  • English proficiency exam (for non-native English speakers; see requirements below)

The Graduate Admissions Committee thoroughly reviews each complete application and considers each applicant exclusively for the degree program to which they have applied.

The Graduate Admissions Office does not prescreen any application materials prior to the submission of your application. Also, the office will not advise applicants as to whether they should or should not submit an application.

CMU Rales Fellows Program

CMU Rales Fellows

This distinctive and transformative program is dedicated to developing a diverse community of exceptionally talented national STEM leaders from underrepresented or underresourced backgrounds by eliminating cost as a barrier to graduate education.

Learn More

Submitting your application materials

All required materials should be uploaded into the application form. You should request English proficiency exam score reports be sent electronically to the department. It is acceptable for letters of recommendation to arrive after the application submission deadline. 

Unofficial transcripts

Transcripts will be marked “unofficial” even if you have uploaded an official copy of your transcripts directly into the application. The Admissions Committee will review the unofficial transcripts that have been uploaded directly. It is not necessary to submit an official transcript until you have been requested to do so.

Recommendation letters

The most informative recommendations are written by those for whom you have done technical work or research similar to the type you will do as a graduate student in our program. Most often, this will be a professor in engineering or science with whom you have taken a course with a significant project component, or an undergraduate (or master’s) thesis advisor. Depending on how long it has been since you have been out of school, some combination of one or two professors and one or two work supervisors is the most common choice.

English proficiency exam

As an applicant, an English proficiency exam is required for non-native English speakers. The department accepts TOEFL, IELTS, and Duolingo scores (must be sent electronically to the university from the company).  Applicants who are non-native English speakers can receive a requirement waiver if they have or will complete a four-year undergraduate program at a university within the United States before the start of the first term they are enrolled.

Score requirements

TOEFL iBT Reading TOEFL iBT Listening TOEFL iBT Speaking TOEFL iBT Writing TOEFL iBT Total IELTS Band Score DuoLingo
22 22 18 22 84 6.5 105

Submitting your scores

  • TOEFL Institution code is 2074

IELTS + DUOLINGO send your scores to: Carnegie Mellon University College of Engineering, 431 Hamerschlag Drive, Ansys Hall Suite 250, Pittsburgh, PA 15213


The essay section is important and application reviewers read every word of it during the review process. It should be thoughtful, informative, and written in crisp, clear English. It should show that you have thought about your research interests and motivations, future professional goals, and interest in outreach, as well as diversity equity, and inclusion. The essay field on the application will allow for 500 words. Do not copy whole sections of our catalogue or faculty bios, web pages, etc. into your statement of purpose. Suggest a few possible projects that might interest you, but do not limit yourself to a single, narrowly-defined project.

What courses could you take?

Check out CMU’s schedule of classes

Financial support

Doctoral students generally receive financial support for their tuition and stipend from fellowships, traineeships, government grants, graduate assistantships, or scholarships. The vast majority of graduate assistantships that cover a stipend and tuition are paid for by competitive external research grants. Hence, continued financial assistance for doctoral students is contingent upon both satisfactory research progress and academic performance.

Checking the status of your application

Please sign into your graduate application to check the status. This site is updated when material is received and decisions are made, so please feel free to check your status frequently during peak admission season.

Reapplying if not admitted

Your completed application may be reconsidered for the next concurrent semester after your original application semester. If you would like your application to be reconsidered, send an email to stating your intentions. 

Statement of Assurance

Carnegie Mellon University does not discriminate in admission, employment or administration of its programs or activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, handicap or disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, ancestry, belief, veteran status, or genetic information. Furthermore, Carnegie Mellon University does not discriminate and is required not to discriminate in violation of federal, state or local laws or executive orders.

Inquiries concerning the application of and compliance with this statement should be directed to the university ombudsman, Carnegie Mellon University, 5000 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, telephone 412.268.1018.

Obtain general information about Carnegie Mellon University by calling 412.268.2000.

Carnegie Mellon University publishes an annual campus security and fire safety report describing the university’s security, alcohol and drug, sexual assault and fire safety policies, and containing statistics about the number and type of crimes committed on the campus, and the number and cause of fires in campus residence facilities during the preceding three years. You can obtain a copy by contacting the Carnegie Mellon Police Department at 412-268-2323. The annual security and fire safety report also is available online at

Information regarding the application of Title IX, including to admission and employment decisions, the sexual misconduct grievance procedures and process, including how to file a report or a complaint of sex discrimination, how to file a report of sexual harassment, and how the university responds to such reports is available at The Title IX coordinator may be reached at 5000 Forbes Ave., 140 Cyert Hall, Pittsburgh, PA 15213; 412-268-7125; or

For more information regarding the statement of assurance please visit