Why do you only accept applications for the Fall semester?
Our required first-year core courses are only offered in sequence, beginning in the fall semester.
Can I apply directly to the PhD program if I only have a bachelor’s degree?
Yes. We do not require a Master’s degree for application to the PhD program. If your ultimate goal is to earn the PhD in the CSEM Program, you should indicate PhD as your ultimate degree sought in your online application. Our doctoral students may complete a CSEM Master’s degree along the way to the PhD. If you select Master’s as your ultimate degree sought, your application will not be routed to the correct committee and you will not be considered for financial aid.
I am applying to the PhD program. Am I required to contact faculty before submitting my application?
No. Applicants are not required to contact faculty directly as part of our application process. However, you are more than welcome to reach out to any of our faculty whose research is of interest to you. Any member of the CSEM Graduate Studies Committee may advise CSEM doctoral students.
Is it possible to apply for a waiver of the application fee?
The CSEM Program has some funding available for U.S. citizens in need of a fee waiver due to financial hardship. Please contact the Graduate Coordinator to request a waiver.
I want to apply to two programs at UT Austin. Do I have to pay the application fee twice?
No. If you are applying to more than one graduate program at UT Austin, you only need to pay the application fee once. Submit the fee with the first application. When you submit the second application, select the option to “pay outside of ApplyTexas”. Once the second application is processed, the fee from the first will be applied.
I accidentally selected Master’s as my ultimate degree sought in the online application. How can I change it to PhD?
Send an e-mail to the Graduate Coordinator indicating that you need to change your degree sought to PhD.
If I am not admitted to the PhD program, can I be considered for the Master’s program?
No. Our Master’s program is a terminal program and is not designed to be a stepping stone to the PhD program or an easier path to admission. We use the same admission criteria when evaluating applications for both the MS and PhD programs.
What is the ETS code for the University of Texas at Austin?
The ETS code (for GRE & TOEFL) is 6882.
What department code should I use when submitting my GRE and/or TOEFL test scores?
It is not necessary to use a department code when submitting your test scores to UT Austin. If you must select a department code, pick one that is similar to your proposed major. ALL test scores sent to UT Austin will be made available to the graduate program(s) to which you are applying.
How long does it take for test scores to be received?
Test scores are received by the university approximately four to six weeks after a test is taken if the university is designated as a score recipient at the time of testing.
How can I receive a waiver of the TOEFL or IELTS?
According to the Office of Graduate Admissions, international applicants who are from a qualifying country are exempt from this requirement. Additionally, applicants are exempt from the requirement if they possess a bachelor's degree from a U.S. institution or an institution in a qualifying country. If you qualify for the waiver, it will be automatically applied after your application has been processed. If you do not qualify for a waiver based on the requirements outlined by the Office of Graduate Admissions, DO NOT e-mail the CSEM Program to ask for a waiver.
Can I receive a waiver of the TOEFL or IELTS if I have a Master’s degree from a U.S. institution or an institution in a qualifying country?
No. The requirement is NOT waived for applicants who have earned a master's — but not a bachelor's — degree from a qualifying institution. If you do not qualify for a waiver based on the requirements outlined by the Office of Graduate Admissions, DO NOT e-mail the CSEM Program to ask for a waiver.
What if my TOEFL or IELTS scores are expired?
We cannot accept expired test scores. If you do not qualify for a waiver based on the requirements outlined by the Office of Graduate Studies, DO NOT e-mail the CSEM Program to ask for a waiver.
Do I need to mail any physical materials to the CSEM Program or the university?
No. All application materials must be submitted online. Any materials mailed to the university will be disposed of and will not be included in your application.
Do I need to have official, physical transcripts mailed to the university?
No. After you submit the online application and pay your application fee, you will receive an email that contains a link to your MyStatus page where you will be able to upload your transcript. The uploaded transcripts are considered to be unofficial but will be used to process your application for admission. Please do not mail official transcripts or paper copies of your transcripts before you are offered admission. Sending paper copies of documents you have uploaded will delay the processing of your application. Instructions for submitting transcripts may be found on the How to Apply page under Step 3.
Will I be considered for financial aid?
All applicants to the CSEM PhD Program are considered for financial aid as part of the admissions process. We do not provide financial aid for Master’s students.
How can I submit additional materials with my application?
The CSEM Program does not require additional materials to be submitted other than what is listed in the application instructions. However, if you wish to submit additional materials you may upload them as pdf documents using the Document Upload System found on your MyStatus page. These documents should be designated as Miscellaneous Admissions Documents.
Do you have a minimum GRE score requirement?
No, the CSEM Program evaluates each application holistically and does not accept or reject an application based on a single component of that application.
What are the average GRE scores for students admitted to the CSEM Program?
The average GRE scores for students admitted to the CSEM program over the past 5 years are shown below. Please note — for the past 3 years, GRE submission has been optional.
What is the minimum TOEFL or IELTS score required for admission?
A score of 79 on the TOEFL internet-based test or an overall band score of 6.5 on the IELTS is considered the minimum acceptable score for admission to the University of Texas at Austin.
What are the average TOEFL & IELTS scores for students admitted to the CSEM Program?
The average TOEFL & IELTS scores for students admitted to the CSEM Program over the past 5 years are shown below.
What is the average GPA for students admitted to the CSEM Program?
The average GPA for students admitted to the CSEM program over the past 5 years is: 3.85. Please keep in mind that this average is based on upper-division coursework and only includes those applicants whose undergraduate GPA was calculated on a 4.00 scale.
How do I check the status of my application?
The Office of Graduate Admissions provides the MyStatus page to help applicants to track the receipt of required materials. You will need your UT EID and password to access this service. You will not be able to check the status of your application until you have submitted the online application and have received the acknowledgement email with your EID and password.
How will I be notified of an admissions decision?
As soon as the CSEM Admissions Committee makes a decision on your application, it will be reflected in your MyStatus page and you will receive an e-mail notification. You may also be contacted by the CSEM Graduate Coordinator.
When are admissions decisions usually made?
The CSEM Admissions Committee strives to have all admissions decisions made by early to mid-March.
If I am granted admission with financial support, by what date am I required to respond?
The University of Texas at Austin is a member of the Council of Graduate Schools and we subscribe to the council’s Resolution Regarding Graduate Scholars, Fellows, Trainees and Assistants. This resolution states that students are under no obligation to respond to offers of financial support prior to April 15.
If I am granted admission with financial support, may I respond earlier than April 15?
Yes. You are encouraged to respond to our offer as soon as possible which will assist us with our admissions process.
How many students are enrolled in the CSEM PhD Program?
There were 101 students enrolled in the CSEM Program for academic year 2022–23 (89 Doctoral; 12 Master's).
How many applications does the CSEM Program receive annually? How many applicants are admitted and enroll?
Over the past five years, the CSEM Program has received an average of 247 applications per admissions cycle and the average size of the incoming fall class has been 20 students.
Is there an appeals process for applicants who have been denied?
Per the Graduate School's policy: Admissions to graduate programs at UT Austin are overseen by the Admissions Committee within the individual programs. These committees are composed of experienced faculty members who are best-suited to determine the individuals who best meet program standards. Unfortunately, when there are more qualified applicants than can adequately be instructed by the faculty or accommodated in the facilities, the Admissions Committee for the proposed area may deny admission to many applicants. Admissions recommendations to the graduate dean are final; there is no appeal. (See After Your Decision.)
Can the CSEM Program provide feedback to denied applicants?
Unfortunately, due to the high number of applicants, the CSEM Admissions Committee is unable to provide specific feedback to individual applicants.