Doctoral Program Admissions Overview

The programs leading to the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree are designed to develop the student’s ability to perform research or high-level design in Systems Engineering, Financial Engineering, Engineering Management and/or Enterprise Systems. Admission to the Doctoral program is made through the school’s Committee on Doctoral Admissions (CDA) and is based on a review of the candidate’s scholastic record, professional accomplishments and fit between his/her research objectives and those of the available SSE faculty. All admitted students must have the potential to advance the state of the art in their field of research. The CDA is chaired by the SSE Associate Dean for Research with representation from each of the major Doctoral programs.

Admissions Requirements

For domestic students, admission to the Doctoral programs in SSE requires that the candidate has graduated from an ABET accredited undergraduate program, preferably in engineering or science. A master’s degree is usually required before a student is admitted to the Doctoral program. A student’s Master’s level academic performance and/or career must reflect his/her ability to pursue advanced studies and perform independent research. Typically a GPA of 3.5 or better at Master’s level and 3.0 or better at the undergraduate level is required for admission to the Doctoral program. International students must demonstrate proficiency in the English language prior to admission by scoring at least 550 (210 for computer based) on the TOEFL examination.

All Doctoral applicants are required to submit Graduate Record Exam (GRE) results. Applicants may submit GMAT scores in lieu of GREs for the Doctorate in Engineering Management and Enterprise Systems.

In addition, each applicant must submit a current resume or curriculum vitae, three recommendations and a Statement of Purpose. The Statement of Purpose should be limited to three pages and describe the applicant’s academic interests, proposed course work, research interests and rationale, general career objectives and desired full/part-time student status. Applicants are strongly encouraged to review the available Doctoral advisors on the SSE website and identify those who they believe are most closely aligned with their desired areas of research in their Statement of Purpose. The Statement of Purpose not only represents the student’s interests, motivations and goals, but also is a reflection of his/her ability to communicate effectively and reflects the maturity of his/her research aspirations. Each applicant must also submit an example of his/her written technical work. This work should be written solely by the applicant; published work if available is most desirable. All applications for part-time studies must include a letter of commitment from the applicant’s employer.

The following is a summary of the application submission contents:

  • Statement of Purpose: which includes academic interests, proposed course work, research interests and rationale, general career objectives and desired full/part-time status

  • Current resume or curriculum vitae (CV)

  • Official transcripts for all schools of higher learning (university, colleges, etc.) attended; >3.0 undergrad, >3.5 graduate

  • A Master’s degree in a related area is strongly recommended

  • GRE test scores

  • TOEFL > 550 (scores for non-native speakers of English)

  • Three recommendations

  • Evidence of written work: such as a technical document written solely by the applicant; published work is most desirable

  • Letter of endorsement from employer for part-time studies

While applications are accepted in a rolling admissions process throughout the school year, due to limitations in available faculty advisors it is strongly encouraged that students complete their application submissions by March 15th for entry in the fall semester and by August 15th for entry in the spring semester. Applicants who have 6 submitted complete applications by these dates will be notified of their admission decision by April 30th and September 30th, respectively. Applications received after these dates will be considered for any remaining open positions and notified within four to six weeks after the complete application has been received.

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