How to Apply
Students wishing to enroll in the Engineering Design graduate program must complete the formal application process. The following application requirements pertain to both the M.S. and M.Eng. programs.
The process of applying for admission to graduate school at Penn State requires the application materials listed below, some of which are submitted to The Graduate School. The only materials that should be sent to the department are two official transcripts. All other required application material should be electronically submitted via the Graduate School electronic application system. The information regarding the application fee can be found at Requirements for Graduate Admission.
A concise design portfolio demonstrating your best work should be prepared and submitted to the online application system as a PDF. Since program participants will come from many disciplines, the content of the portfolios is expected to vary considerably across candidates. For example, everything from blueprints to algorithms, CAD models to prototypes may be appropriate. Each exhibit should have a short accompanying description providing background on the work. The PDF should not exceed six pages.
Statement of Purpose
The statement of purpose is used to decide whether Penn State Engineering Design is a good match for you. The statement should clearly identify one of the three option areas (Engineering Product Design, Systems Design, and Data-Driven Design) as your primary areas of focus. It should be approximately one page in length and describe your motivation in pursuing the degree and future plans. Consider why you have selected your particular area of focus, the experiences that have prepared you for it, and what opportunities you seek in graduate school. This should be uploaded as a PDF to the online application system.
Two transcripts from all institutions of higher education attended, both undergraduate and graduate (if applicable), must be uploaded during the application process. If you are accepted to the graduate degree program, you will be notified with detailed instructions on how to submit the official documents. Note that at that time, notarized copies will not be sufficient and will not be accepted. International applicants must submit official or attested university record, with certified translations if the records are not in English.
No documents should be sent by mail. Do not send hard copies of the documents you submitted online
Letters of Recommendation
Three letters of recommendation are requested. These should be submitted through the online reference system. Choose your writers carefully—they should know you well and be able to describe your preparation for a graduate degree in Engineering Design.
Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Test Scores
Applicants are required to take the GRE Aptitude Test. The Subject Test is not required. Please request ETS to send scores to both the institution and the department.
International applicants must take and submit scores for the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or the IELTS (International English Language Testing System), with the exceptions noted below. The minimum acceptable score for the TOEFL is 550 for the paper-based test, or a total score of 80 with a 19 on the speaking section for the internet-based test (iBT). The minimum composite score for the IELTS is 6.5.
International applicants are exempt from the TOEFL/IELTS requirement who have received a baccalaureate or a masters degree from a college/university/institution in any of the following:
- British Caribbean
- British West Indies
- Canada (except Quebec)
- Republic of Ireland
- New Zealand
- Northern Ireland
- the United States