Pitt | Swanson Engineering
Bioengineering Graduate Admissions

PhD and Research MS FAQ

Q. What is the acceptable/minimum QPA, and GRE score? 

A. We do not preview an applicant’s qualifications or make pre-application admission decisions based on inquiries from applicants.  Our webpage provides the average scores of recently admitted students so that applicants can make informed decisions as to whether or not to apply.  Our graduate program is very competitive.  QPA, and GRE scores are one, but not the sole, important factor in admission decisions.

 

Q. There are two deadlines on the website.  Which one do I choose? 

A. PhD and research (thesis) MS applications must be received by December 1, to be considered for enrollment the following Fall semester (students wishing to begin in the Spring semester may defer their enrollment to then, if admitted). Applicants to the professional (non-thesis) MS program may submit applications by December  1 for Fall term admission, or by June 1 for Spring term admission. 

 

Q. Where do I send my application materials? 

A. Applications should be completed and submitted online. Materials that cannot be included may be mailed to the Swanson School of Engineering, Administration Office, Room 151 Benedum Hall, Pittsburgh, PA  15261.

 

Q. Do I need to provide high school transcripts? 

A. No.

 

Q. I am a foreign student.  Is there additional material required?  Do I need a TOEFL score?  My country doesn't give the TOEFL exam, can I use something else? 

A. In addition to the regular application material, international students are also required to submit the International Graduate Student Supplemental Application Packet and are encouraged to submit all application materials well in advance of the normal application deadlines. The TOEFL exam must be taken if the applicant’s native language is not English. However, foreign students who possess a degree from an accredited institution within the United States are not required to submit TOEFL scores. The Swanson School of Engineering requires a minimum TOEFL score of 550 (213 computer based, 80 internet based).  Applications with scores below this minimum are automatically rejected.   International applicants from countries that do not offer the TOEFL may submit their IELTS score (minimum score 7.0). NOTE: if the TOEFL is offered, it must be the test used to document proficiency in English.

 

Q. What are the Department and Institution codes for submitting the GRE and TOEFL scores? 

A. The Department Code for submitting GRE and TOEFL scores is 1603, and the Institution Code is 2927.

 

Q. I do not have a BS in engineering.  Will I still be considered and will I have to take remedial courses? 

A. While the vast majority of applicants have a BS in an engineering field, a key factor is the applicant’s research interests and how their background prepares them for that area, and matching them with particular faculty members in our program.  We will consider applicants with non-engineering backgrounds whose degrees are in the physical or life sciences.  However, if admitted, such students normally require additional course work to make up deficits in their bioengineering background.

 

Q. Can I apply to the MS and PhD programs in one application form? 

A. In order to pursue a PhD, you need to apply and be admitted to the PhD program.  You can earn a MS degree along the way if you decide after matriculating that you want to do that.  Alternately, if you apply for the MS and decide after matriculating that you want to continue on for a PhD, you can apply to the PhD program.

 

Q. I am an international applicant who applied by the deadline, but the "Apply Yourself" website indicates that my application is incomplete or has not yet been received. Can you please check on the status of my application? 

A. Due to the large number of international applications received, many of which need to be processed and entered into the database manually, the Apply Yourself website may indicate that your materials and scores have not yet been received. While the volume of applications received precludes us from responding to every individual query on the status of your application, please be assured that the website will be updated and your application for admission will be considered.

 

Don't see your question above?  Please contact Mr. Nick Mance at ngm8@pitt.edu for questions about application procedures and materials.  Questions on admissions policies should be directed to Dr. Patrick Loughlin, Chair, Admissions committee, loughlin@pitt.edu.