To apply to a graduate program please see the 'Apply' section at

PhD and Research MS

Applicants for admission, irrespective of status at current or previous institutions, to the PhD or Research MS programs are expected to have a minimum QPA of 3.5 from an accredited BS program in engineering. They must submit transcripts of all college-level work, three letters of recommendation, and a Statement of Purpose. Scores on the verbal, quantitative, and writing assessment-analytical sections of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) can also optionally be submitted at this time. International applicants whose first language is not English are also required to submit the TOEFL administered by the Educational Testing Service with a minimum score of 600 (213 computer-based, 80 internet-based). NOTE: letters of recommendation must be on letterhead, signed by the letter writer, and include his/her contact phone number and email address. Please note that all letters of recommendation must be on official letterhead from the letter writer’s institution.

In addition to these basic requirements, evidence of significant research and/or industrial experience is very important as further evidence of ability to perform well at the graduate level. These experiences should be detailed clearly in recommendation letters, as well as in the student's Statement of Purpose. Students with a non-engineering background will also be considered, and if admitted are required to take extensive prerequisite engineering and math courses as part of their graduate coursework. The Graduate Admissions Committee will also make special considerations for the admission of students with exceptional research capabilities and/or experience. All special case applications are handled on an individual basis. All doctoral students in the Department of Bioengineering are currently supported either by research or departmental funds. Financial assistance is typically arranged between a student and a faculty advisor. Students with exceptional qualifications will be considered for additional departmental support and NIH Training grant fellowships.

Please note that incomplete applications will not be considered and will be returned.

Questions? Please visit our "Frequently asked questions" page.

Application Deadline: December 1 

Notification of Acceptance: beginning around April 1

NOTE: Applications received by the deadline will receive full consideration for admission and financial aid. Applications received after the deadline will be considered on a limited space-available basis.  Applicants to the Professional (non-thesis) MS program may apply by December 31 (Fall term admission) or June 1 (Spring term admission)."   


Students must first be accepted into the MD/PhD Program at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.  

The Department of Bioengineering welcomes MD/PhD students to our graduate program. Students are encouraged to work for two 10-week periods in one or more of our laboratories during the summers before the first and second years of medical school, to determine their choice of PhD advisor. After two years of medical school, students typically complete the PhD portion in three-four years, before returning to finish medical school. Course requirements for MD/PhD students are designed specifically to allow each student to select those classes that are most relevant to their research area of interest, and typically include one course each in engineering mathematics and statistics, three courses chosen from a menu based upon the student's chosen graduate research track, and five elective courses. In addition, each student completes two teaching practica as an introduction to classroom instruction and attends a weekly bioengineering seminar. Participants in the MD/PhD program are among the most successful and productive graduate students in the department, providing a central link between the engineering and medical communities at the University of Pittsburgh.

Interested applicants may contact Aaron Batista, PhD.

Professional MS in Medical Product Engineering (MS-MPE)

The Professional Master’s Degree in Medical Product Engineering program is a non-thesis program of graduate education in bioengineering aimed at current industry professionals or students desiring a career in the healthcare industry. The program provides opportunities for students to acquire relevant business and advanced engineering and technology skills, including issues of entrepreneurship, product development, regulatory processes, and commercialization. The program requires 30 credit hours of study to complete. Admission procedures and requirements are the same as for the PhD and research MS programs, with two exceptions: (1) the minimum GPA requirement is 3.00, and (2) the program utilizes a modified rolling admissions process. In order to allow adequate time for administrative processing, all applications for international students applying from outside the USA should be received by no later than March 15, and all applications for students applying from within the USA should be received by no later than May 15. 

Please visit the Graduate Admissions Page on the Swanson School of Engineering (SSoE) website for further information on application process.

Interested applicants should contact

DPT/PhD Program

Interested applicants should first contact Patrick Sparto, PT.

Application Process

Applications will need to be submitted through the PT Centralized Application Service ( PTCAS ) by December 1 for admission to the program the following June. The application is reviewed by faculty in both departments.

Admission Requirements

Students will need to meet the admission requirements of both programs. Applicants must have a minimum of a Bachelor's degree in a field of engineering or closely related (e.g. physics, or applied mathematics, kinesiology). Applicants must demonstrate evidence of exposure to the field of PT through volunteer or work experience. Applicants must submit 4 letters of reference: one physical therapist with whom the student has volunteered or worked for, two academic advisors, and one work supervisor. A minimum GPA of 3.0 is required but competitive applicants typically have a 3.5 GPA or greater. Applicants must take the GRE exam; typically, admitted students have GRE scores greater than the 50th percentile.

Curriculum Overview

Students will follow the typical plan of study for DPT students for the initial seven semesters (i.e. 2 1/3 years) of the program. Then students will follow the plan of study for PhD students. Clinical internships and research experiences will be performed throughout the program. At a minimum, the program will take 6 years to complete.  After completing the didactic and clinical requirements of the DPT program, the student will be allowed to take the licensing exam. Students are required to write and orally defend a dissertation to complete their PhD degree.