How do I apply?
Fill out the ChemE online application. The application is open from early-September to November 20.
- Chemical Engineering Online Application
- $75 Application Fee
- Unofficial College Transcript(s)
- Resume or CV
- Three Letters of Recommendation
- International students: Official TOEFL or IELTS Test Scores
Do you offer a Graduate Application Assistance Program?
The ChemE Application Mentorship Program (ChAMP)
is a volunteer-based student mentoring program which aims to assist applicants from communities that have been historically underrepresented in higher education, including students from groups underrepresented in STEM, students with non-traditional academic backgrounds, and students from academic institutions which have not historically send many students to MIT.
Applicants will be paired with graduate student mentors who can answer questions about MIT ChemE and provide assistance in preparing strong applications for the MIT Chemical Engineering Department PhD program. Participating in ChAMP is completely voluntary and will not affect your graduate admissions decision. Click here for more information about this program.
Is the deadline the same for the application and supporting documents?
Yes, all application materials are due by November 20.
How do I pay for the application fee?
The online system requires you to pay with a credit card.
Can the application fee be waived or deferred?
The Office of Graduate Education (OGE) is pleased to offer fee waivers for US Citizens and US Permanent Residents who demonstrate financial hardship, are current or former members of the US Armed Forces, or who have participated in special fellowship programs, including MIT-sponsored diversity programs (e.g. ACCESS, MIT Summer Research Program, CONVERGE). The OGE Diversity Initiatives is also pleased to offer fee waivers to prospective students we have met during diversity recruitment events. International students, attending US colleges and universities, who have participated in the MIT CONVERGE or MSRP programs are also eligible for a fee waivers.
Eligibility information, online fee waiver form, and instructions >>
I applied last year; how can I reapply?
You should fill out a completely new online application.
Please indicate that you applied earlier by checking the appropriate box.
Is it OK to send copies of awards, papers or extra letters of recommendation to supplement my application?
No. Due to the volume of applications submitted to the Chemical Engineering Department, we must discourage you from sending in copies of awards, journal articles and other extraneous documents. Anything beyond the required materials will not be reviewed by the committee.
I will be applying before I finish the fall term. Should I update my application with a new transcript which includes my fall term grades?
No, we would prefer that you upload your most recent transcripts (which may include your fall courses in progress). Admitted students will be required to submit final transcripts prior to enrollment in the ChemE graduate programs.
May I apply to other departments or programs outside of the Chemical Engineering department?
Yes, but keep in mind that the applications are independent of each other. We do not share supporting materials with other departments. A separate fee is required for each application.
Are there any differences in the application requirements for the different graduate programs (Ph.D., Ph.D. CEP, M.S. CEP)?
The application requirements within the Department of Chemical Engineering are the same for PhD and MSCEP programs. The application for PhDCEP requires unofficial (self-reported) GRE general test scores.
Will the Department keep me informed of my application status?
We do not routinely acknowledge receipt of applications or supporting documents. Once you have submitted an application online you can go back in and check the status of your recommendations. To check your admission result, you can log into your online account around the end of March. In most cases, the results will be posted rather than mailed. Information about decisions will not be given over the phone or email.
To check your admission result, you can log into your online account around the end of March. In most cases, the results will be posted rather than mailed. Information about decisions will not be given over the phone or email.
What are the selection criteria?
Prospective student applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria:
Understanding of the Chemical Engineering Fundamentals:
The candidate’s core knowledge of chemical kinetics, transport phenomena, thermodynamics, and the underlying quantitative skills that form the core solution methods for Chemical Engineers.
Analytical and Scientific Preparation: A candidate’s background in chemistry, biology, physics, mathematics, and computer science as relevant to the candidate’s area(s) of interest.
Drive and Persistence: A candidate’s commitment to education and research and ability to overcome adversity when challenges are encountered.
Excellence in Research: A candidate’s demonstrated accomplishment in scientific research, including scientific creativity and ability to formulate important scientific questions.
Character: A candidate’s integrity, leadership potential, and ability to work effectively on teams and as a community member within a diverse and multicultural environment.
Communication Skills: A candidate’s demonstrated effectiveness with scientific written and oral communication in English on technical and non-technical subjects.
My undergraduate experience was affected by COVID-19. What will this mean for my application?
In response to the challenges of teaching, learning, and assessing academic performance during the global COVID-19 pandemic, MIT has adopted the following principle: MIT’s admissions committees and offices for graduate and professional schools will take the significant disruptions of the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020 into account when reviewing students’ transcripts and other admissions materials as part of their regular practice of performing individualized, holistic reviews of each applicant.
In particular, as we review applications now and in the future, we will respect decisions regarding the adoption of Pass/No Record (or Credit/No Credit or Pass/Fail) and other grading options during the unprecedented period of COVID-19 disruptions, whether those decisions were made by institutions or by individual students. We also expect that the individual experiences of applicants will richly inform applications and, as such, they will be considered with the entirety of a student’s record.
Ultimately, even in these challenging times, our goal remains to form graduate student cohorts that are collectively excellent and composed of outstanding individuals who will challenge and support one another.
Questions or concerns about this statement should be directed to the academic department or program to which the prospective student has applied.
Can I visit your department or contact faculty before being admitted?
Prospective applicants are welcome to visit MIT. You can arrange a tour of the campus through the MIT Information Center
. Official Department visits including faculty meetings and lab tours will be arranged after you have been admitted.
Can I contact faculty?
You are welcome to contact our faculty directly if you would like; however, many of our faculty are very busy and may not have time to respond to all inquiries from the large number of prospective applicants. Applicants are not allowed to select a thesis advisor prior to admission, and faculty comments regarding students who reached out to them are not considered in the admissions process out of fairness to all applicants. Similarly, the admissions committee members and admissions chair will not advise you on your application out of fairness to all applicants.
How can I submit my GRE score?
MIT Department of Chemical Engineering will not be accepting or considering GRE scores from PhD/ScD and MSCEP applicants. We recommend that PhDCEP applicants submit unofficial (self-reported) GRE General Test scores.
Can I waive the IELTS or TOEFL exams?
TOEFL/IELTS is waived for applicants who are citizens of Australia, Canada, India, Ireland, New Zealand, Nigeria, Singapore, or the United Kingdom.
Waivers are also provided for applicants who have or will earn a 4-year undergraduate degree from an institution in Australia, Canada, India, Ireland, New Zealand, Nigeria, Singapore, or the United Kingdom that provides instruction primarily in English.
How do I report my IELTS or TOEFL scores?
Your online application will require you to attach a scanned copy of your test scores. IELTS or TOEFL scores should be sent directly to MIT. IELTS and TOEFL scores are valid for 2 years.
IELTS does not require a code. Designate “Department of Chemical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology” in the appropriate field. No address is required as scores are reported electronically.
For reporting the TOEFL scores, the MIT institution code is 3514, and the department code is 64.
When is the last date I can take the IELTS or TOEFL?
Applicants are expected to take the IELTS or TOEFL by October 15 to allow for proper reporting time. Applications will not be reviewed until your scores are received.
What is the minimum requirement for the IELTS?
The minimum overall band score requirement for the IELTS is 7.
What is the minimum requirement for the TOEFL?
The minimum overall score requirement for the TOEFL is 100.
What degree programs do you offer in Chemical Engineering?
MIT’s Department of Chemical Engineering offers three graduate degree programs:
Can I apply to more than one degree program in your department?
You may not apply to the MSCEP and the PhD or PhDCEP programs. However, you may apply simultaneously to the PhD and PhDCEP programs. In this case, you must indicate which is your first choice.
If I am not admitted to the PhD program, will I be considered for the MSCEP program?
No, the admissions process is separate for the PhD and MSCEP programs. If you are not accepted for the doctoral program, your application will not be considered for the MSCEP.
Since I have been in the workforce for the last few years, it will be difficult to obtain all letters of recommendation from faculty members. Is it OK to ask my employer/supervisors to write letters in support of my application?
In a case like this, we usually suggest that you submit at least one letter from a faculty member who knew you well — perhaps your undergraduate thesis supervisor. The other two letters can be from employers. When in doubt, remember that the strongest recommendations are those that speak to all six of the criteria evaluated by the committee.
Are interdisciplinary programs available?
The MIT Chemical Engineering Department participates in the following interdisciplinary programs. Admission procedures vary, so please contact these offices directly to obtain information and instructions.
Does the Department admit its own S.B. students to the graduate program?
We consider our own undergraduates for the MSCEP program, but for no other degrees. This policy is difficult for us, because we must turn away some excellent students. However, we feel very strongly that our students benefit by going to another school for an advanced degree. We make the MSCEP exception because the Practice School has no equivalent at other schools.
Do I need to have research experience prior to applying?
While research experience is not required to apply, such experience is relevant to many of the criteria examined by the committee in evaluating candidates and almost always strengthens an application.
I do not have a background in Chemical Engineering, can I still apply?
Yes, you can still apply to our graduate program. The only educational requirement for our program is that students must have received a Bachelor’s degree prior to the start of our program. That being said, strong applicants to our program will have a solid background in Chemical Engineering fundamentals which typically includes knowledge of molecular thermodynamics, transport phenomena, chemical kinetics, and math up to at least differential equations. This academic preparation need not come from Chemical Engineering courses if it provides a similar academic background. Many applicants from related majors including chemistry, physics, and biological engineering have been successful in our program in the past.
Are there courses I should take to strengthen my engineering background?
We require that all incoming graduates take four core classes regardless of prior coursework. In the past, our faculty has admitted students from other disciplines with an educational background that we believe has prepared the student for our graduate core classes.
Chemical Engineering GRADUATE CORE CURRICULUM
- Numerical Methods in Chemical Engineering 10.34
- Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics 10.40
- Analysis of Transport Phenomena 10.50
- Chemical Reactor Engineering 10.65
Is there any way to pursue part-time study at MIT?
The MIT Chemical Engineering graduate programs are considered full-time positions. Part-time study is considered “Special Student status
” by MIT, and is overseen by the MIT Graduate Student Office. Please see their website for more information.
Do you offer financial support?
All graduate students in good academic standing are fully supported for the duration of their graduate program. Financial Support
for graduate students in the Department of Chemical Engineering is available in the form of fellowships, research assistantships, or teaching assistantships. Students receive full tuition, a stipend, and individual health coverage.
Does the stipend cover health insurance?
MIT’s Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP)
is included with tuition for all graduate students in the Chemical Engineering department for the duration of the program.
Do you offer spring or summer term admission?
The MIT academic year begins in September, and PhD students are therefore only admitted for the fall semester. It is not possible to be admitted for the Spring or Summer term.
Can I receive transfer credit for graduate courses I have already taken?
No transfer credit is accepted for our program. All students, regardless of whether they have completed graduate work prior to entering our program, must satisfy the same program requirements. Prior educational experience, however, will help our faculty determine what classes are most appropriate for a student to take, and may be considered to satisfy prerequisites (if applicable) for some of our advanced graduate classes.
What is the review process timeline?
We receive over 500 applications each year. Our Admissions Committee reviews applicants throughout December and January. Applicants are typically notified in writing by mid-February.
Can you give me an idea of my chances for admission, based on scores or Class Rank, for example?
We can make no preliminary evaluation based on one or two qualifications. The Admissions Committee holistically reviews the entire application (recommendations, essay, grades, test scores, previous research experience, etc.) in making its decisions.
If admitted, can I defer my admission?
On rare occasions, deferral requests are approved for one year. Approved deferrals will only be for admission and not for any departmental financial aid award a student received upon admission. Applicants must contact the department to ask about a deferral before April 1.
Whom do I contact if I have questions about the application process?