Our Graduate Admissions Process

Frequently Asked Questions

 

General Admission Questions

 

Tuition & Financial Aid

 

GRE & TOEFL Exams

 

Technical Assistance

 

Consumer Information

CMU has created this webpage to provide access to information that current and prospective students of the University may need in order to be informed consumers. Higher education institutions that receive federal student financial assistance are required by the U.S. government to make this information available. This information may be changed from time to time as required.

 

Q: What is the status of my application?

A: Due to the volume of mail and e-mail received daily from applicants it may not be possible to respond to individual requests for information. You will be contacted once your application has been officially received and marked complete. All applicants can expect to hear a decision by 1 April, 2017.

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Q: May I apply for more than one program?

A: Yes, but you must fill out a separate application for each program. We consider applications to different programs separately, and in many cases the requirements are different. You are also required to pay a separate application fee for each application you submit, or it will not be reviewed.

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Q: May I use an agency, consultant, or other third party to complete my application for me?

A: No. Every application must be completed, in its entirety, by the Applicant himself/herself. Except for applications made by bona-fide not-for-profit organizations (e.g. Fulbright, Amideast), any application filled out wholly or in part by any person other than the Applicant will be disqualified. All third parties must declare themselves in writing (email is acceptable) to the Graduate Admission Coordinator prior to beginning an application.

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Q: May I apply for spring admission?

A: Due to curriculum structure, all of our Master-level programs begin in the fall semester. We accept applications for the Fall semester from October through January 15. Occasionally, we are able to admit PhD students in the spring. If you would like to be considered for spring admission, please contact Samantha Carter, our Graduate Admission Coordinator.

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Q: Do you offer a professional Master's degree (Master of Architecture / M.Arch) program?

A: Yes! New for 2017: the SoA M.Arch program, distinguished by the same excellence in arts and technology that marks our other programs. See more information.

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Q: What is the cost of tuition?

A: 

Studio-based graduate programs (MArch, MUD and MAAD):

The cost of Full Time tuition for the 2016-2017 Academic Year (Fall and Spring semesters) is $37,380. The subsequent year’s tuition is subject to change and will not be determined until March, 2017. Please expect that it will be equal to or greater than the per semester cost of the 2016-2017 Academic Year tuition.

Research-based graduate programs (MSAECM, MSBPD, MSCD, MSSD, MTID, EM2, DPP, and all PhD programs):

The cost of Full Time tuition for the 2016-2017 Academic Year (Fall and Spring semesters) is $35,720. The subsequent year’s tuition is subject to change and will not be determined until March, 2017. Please expect that it will be equal to or greater than the per semester cost of the 2016-2017 Academic Year tuition.

The Graduate programs offered in the School of Architecture vary in expected completion time, affecting the overall cost of the program. Please refer to individual program curricula to estimate the overall cost of tuition.

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Q: What are the costs of living expenses and additional expenses beyond tuition?

A: For the year 2015-2016 CMU's estimated overall costs (not including tuition) are $21,616 or greater. This includes compulsory fees, living expenses, and health insurance. Please visit the HUB's Tuition & Fees website for a breakdown of these costs and any available updates.

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Q: What scholarships and assistantships are available for a Master's student?

A: All admitted students will automatically be considered for a partial SoA Graduate Student Merit Scholarship. You will be notified within 3 weeks of your admission letter should you receive this award. These scholarships are awarded to exceptional students joining the School of Architecture based on the strength of their application and demonstrated potential for advancing in their careers. Merit-based scholarships are based upon the following criteria:


Fit for program, commitment to chosen field, clearly defined career goals (Statement of Purpose)
Relevant experience, demonstrated leadership (Resume)
Competitive standardized test scores (GRE)
Strong academic record (Transcripts)
Letters of recommendation
Portfolio (if required by program)

 

In addition, a Graduate Assistantship is available to full-time Master students in the Fall 2017 semester. This assistantship entails working as an employee of the University for approximately four (4) hours per week at a rate of $15 per hour for up to 67 hours a semester (up to $1000), based upon full-time enrollment. We offer Fall assistantships to all Master students; additionally, during the Fall, you may apply for a Spring assistantship. Spring assistantships are awarded based on Fall performance, academic standing, etc.

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Q: What scholarships and assistantships are available for a PhD student?

A: Financial support for PhD students, although administered through the School, is provided by individual faculty members, typically from research grants and contracts. If financial support is available, it may take the form of tuition-only or tuition plus a monthly stipend. Following your admission, the School will advise you of any financial support that faculty members are able to offer you. Continued financial support depends on availability of funds and your satisfactory performance.

Self-supporting PhD students (i.e., those who pay their own tuition) will be offered Graduate Assistantships, as described here.

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Q: Do I need to take the TOEFL/IELTS?

A: If your native language is not English AND you will require a visa to attend Carnegie Mellon, you will need to provide a TOEFL score.

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Q: Do you have a minimum TOEFL/IELTS score requirement?

A: Yes. The minimum TOEFL score for acceptance in the School of Architecture is 100, with a minimum subscore of 24 in each category; Speaking, Listening, Reading, and Writing. (Minimum accepted IELTS score is 7.0, with a minimum of 6.5 in each category.) Our graduate committee reserves the right to consider applicants who do not meet our 24 minimum requirement in each category.

These minimum scores are strictly enforced. We have found that success and happiness in our graduate programs strongly correlates with proficiency in English skills. Our programs are quite rigorous. If you do not meet our application requirements, we suggest that you retake the test before applying.

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Q: I have a degree from (or am currently enrolled at) another US university. Do I still have to provide a TOEFL/IELTS score?

A: Yes. Regardless of previous degrees or acceptances at other universities, you must meet our TOEFL/IELTS minimum requirements. If you are currently enrolled in another US university and you took the TOEFL/IELTS to apply for that school, we will accept those scores, but only if they meet our minimum criteria. If they do not meet our criteria, you will need to take the TOEFL/IELTS again. Your TOEFL/IELTS score must also still be valid according to the Educational Testing Service/British Council.

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Q: Can you offer me admission conditional upon completing an English class?

A: No. Unfortunately we are not able to offer "conditional admission" to any applicant.

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Q: Do you have a minimum GRE score requirement?

A: No.

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Q: How do I log back into my online application?

A: Be sure to keep the email you were sent with the subject line "PCS application login instructions [SAVE THIS]." This email has an embedded link for you to log back into your application. Or, if that does not work, go to the online application main page and enter the exact same email address you used to register the first time. You will be sent another email with the embedded link.

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Q: I paid the $75 application fee, but it is not displayed as "received" in my application. Is something wrong?

A: Our admissions team must manually update your online application, and may not be available to update your application immediately after you make your payment. Please leave up to 2 business days before contacting our department. Please do not make another payment unless notified to do so by our department. 

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