Carnegie Mellon University School of Computer Science

SCS Graduate Admissions Overview

Thank you for your interest in graduate studies at Carnegie Mellon's School of Computer Science! Our online application allows you to apply to up to three of our doctoral programs and any of our master’s programs included in the combined application.

Please note that five of our master's programs have separate online applications, which you can learn more about on their admissions pages. MSIT in Privacy EngineeringMaster of Human-Computer Interaction, Master of Software Engineering, Master of Software Engineering - Scalable Systems, and Master of Software Engineering - Embedded Systems.

Please note - GREs will be optional for Fall 2020 applications to programs for the academic year 2021-22, although many programs strongly recommend taking them. Please see a short description of each program's GRE policy

Important Dates & Deadlines

Fall 2021 Application Deadlines:
  • Application Opens - August 17th, 2020 
  • Early Application Deadline (Reduced Fee) - November 19th, 2020 (11:59a.m. EST)
  • Final Application Deadline - December 10th, 2020 (11:59a.m. EST)

TOEFL, IELTS & GRE Deadlines:

  • If you need to retake your TOEFL, IELTS and/or GRE for this application then you must take the exam no later than November 7th, 2020. We will not accept any exam scores taken past the date of November 7th, 2020 because the test scores will not be reportable until after our December 10th, 2020 deadline.

Application Checklist

  • Application Fee
    • If you submit your application and pay the required fee before 11:59a.m. EST on November 19th, 2020 (Early Deadline) the application fee is $75 for one program and $50 for each additional program.
    • At 12:00p.m. EST on November 19th, 2020 the application fee increases to $125 for one program and $75 for each additional program.
    • FEE WAIVERS: We expect all applicants to submit payment with their online application. However, please note that we do waive the required fee under certain circumstances. Fees for application to a limited number of our programs can be waived for participants in certain pipeline programs. In addition, if you are unable to pay the application fee, the School of Computer Science will consider a fee waiver request. For information about how to apply for an application fee waiver, please visit the SCS Fee Waivers Page.
  • The Graduate Application
  • GREs will be optional for Fall 2020 applications to programs for the academic year 2021-22, although many programs strongly recommend taking them. Please see a short description of each program's GRE policy
  • TOEFL/IELTS/Duolingo - If you are an international applicant and your native language (language spoken from birth) is not English, an official copy of an English proficiency score report is required. The English proficiency requirement cannot be waived for any reason. We strongly encourage applicants to take either the TOEFL or IELTS.  In cases where these are not available it is acceptable to take the Duolingo test. We discourage the use of the "TOEFL IPT Plus for China", since speaking is not scored. Additional details are provided on the Frequently Asked Questions page.
  • Unofficial Transcripts - Students who enroll in the program will be instructed to submit hard copy, official transcripts and proof of degree completion before the start of the semester.
  • Resume/CV
  • Statement of Purpose - Prepare a concise one or two-page essay that describes your primary areas of interest in research, your related experiences, and your objective in pursuing a graduate degree at Carnegie Mellon.
  • Three Letters of Recommendation - At least two letters from faculty at your current/recent institution are preferred. Recommenders must submit their letters online by the deadline.
  • Supplemental Information - If applicable.
Program: Short Name: GRE policy:
Master of Science in Automated Science: Biological Experimentation MSAS GREs are optional, but strongly recommended if your transcript does not contain much coursework in Mathematics, Computer Science, or other heavily quantitative disciplines (in order for you to provide evidence of your quantitative abilities).
Master of Science in Computational Biology MSCB GRE's are not required. We assess applicants holistically and take into consideration many factors, including computational background and skill. This skill can be demonstrated by optional submission of GRE scores and/or by coursework in computer science, linear algebra, statistical inference, or related areas. 
Master of Science in Computer Science MSCS GRE scores are highly recommended.  If you cannot provide them, please briefly explain in your application.  GRE scores are waived for applicants who have graduated from, or are enrolled at, Carnegie Mellon. More info: https://csd.cmu.edu/academics/masters/admissions
Master of Human-Computer Interaction  MHCI GRE scores are highly recommended for the MHCI application. If you are unable to provide them due to Covid-19, please briefly address this in your application. 
Master of Educational Technology and Applied Learning Science METALS The GRE General Test is strongly encouraged. If GRE General Test scores are not submitted as part of your application, we strongly encourage you to submit a portfolio and other relevant materials (such as coursework) to demonstrate your abilities and readiness for the program’s rigor. 
Master of Science in Product Management MSPM Waived GRE and GMAT for 2020 applications only
Master of Software Engineering MSE GREs are optional but recommended as part of a holistic review and evaluation of applications by the MSE Programs Admission Committee
Master of Software Engineering - Scalable Systems MSE-SS GREs are optional but recommended as part of a holistic review and evaluation of applications by the MSE Programs Admission Committee
Master of Software Engineering - Embedded Systems MSE-ES GREs are optional but recommended as part of a holistic review and evaluation of applications by the MSE Programs Admission Committee
Master's of Software Engineering - Distance MSE-Distance GRE scores are optional, however, applicants who have taken the GREs are encouraged to submit their scores.
Master of Science in Information Technology - Privacy Engineering MSIT-PE While this year GRE scores are optional due to COVID-19, applicants who have taken the GRE are encouraged to submit their scores. GRE scores are waived for applicants who have graduated from, or are enrolled at, Carnegie Mellon.
Master of Computational Data Science MCDS GRE scores are highly recommended.  If you cannot provide them, please briefly explain in your application.  GRE scores are waived for applicants who have graduated from, or are enrolled at, Carnegie Mellon.  More info: https://mcds.cs.cmu.edu/apply-mcds-program
Master of Science in Intelligent Information Systems MIIS Optional. An application without GRE scores is not at a disadvantage, however you may submit GRE results if you wish.
Master of Science in Language Technologies MLT Optional. An application without GRE scores is not at a disadvantage, however you may submit GRE results if you wish.
Master of Computational Data Science MSAII Optional. An application without GRE scores is not at a disadvantage, however you may submit GRE results if you wish.
Master of Science in Machine Learning MSML We understand that the GRE may be difficult to take for applicants in 2020. If you have taken it or want to take it, please include your scores in your application. Otherwise, please know that the lack of GRE results will not be held against you for admission to the MS in Machine Learning program. More info: https://www.ml.cmu.edu/academics/primary-ms-machine-learning-masters.html
Master of Science in Computer Vision MSCV GREs are strongly recommended.  Adequate performance on all GRE elements (analytical, verbal, and quantitative) is considered critically in the admissions evaluation.
Master of Science in Robotics MSR GREs are strongly recommended.  Adequate performance on all GRE elements (analytical, verbal, and quantitative) is considered critically in the admissions evaluation.
Master's in Robotic Systems Development MRSD GREs are strongly recommended.  Adequate performance on all GRE elements (analytical, verbal, and quantitative) is considered critically in the admissions evaluation.
Ph.D. in Computer Science    Optional. Not required but if you have taken the GRE, you are encouraged to submit the score.
Ph.D. in Machine Learning   Optional. Not required but if you have taken the GRE, you are encouraged to submit the score.
Ph.D. in Societal Computing (ISR)   Optional. Ph.D. applicants are welcome to submit a GRE score (<5 years old) if they wish, but are under no obligation to do so this year.
Ph.D. in Software Engineering (ISR)   We don't use GRE scores at all in our admissions processes.
Ph.D. in Language and Information Technology   Optional. An application without GRE scores is not at a disadvantage, however you may submit GRE results if you wish.
Ph.D. in Robotics  
Optional but strongly recommended. If you cannot submit GRE scores, please explain the reason.
Ph.D. in Human-Computer Interaction   We don't use GRE scores at all in our admissions processes.
Ph.D. in Computational Biology   We don't use GRE scores at all in our admissions processes.

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