Applying to MechSE

Which program should I apply to?
Application deadlines
Minimum requirements
Graduate application checklist (which includes the topics below)

  • Application and application fee
  • Resume/CV
  • Statement of Purpose/Personal Statement
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Transcripts
  • GRE general test
  • Additional requirements for international applicants
  • TOEFL
  • Evidence of Financial Resources
  • Class rank form
  • Applying for fellowships, research assistantships, and teaching assistantships

Which program should I apply to?

MechSE offers the following degree programs:

Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering (MEngME)*
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME)*
Master of Science in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics (MSTAM)

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Mechanical Engineering (PHDME)
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics (PHDTAM)

*Available both on campus and online.

MechSE also serves as the administrative unit for the Master of Engineering with a concentration in Computational Engineering degree. Read more about the details of this program.

The PhD program in Mechanical Engineering can be pursued in conjunction with the MS or alone. Applicants now have the following options.

  1. Apply directly to the PHD ME program (PHD without masters). To do this, select the Mechanical Engineering PHD program in your application.
  2. Apply to an MS degree and indicate that you plan to continue for a PHD degree (masters followed by PHD). To do this, select the MS program in your application and select “Yes” when asked if you plan to continue for a PHD.
  3. Apply to an MS degree and, upon admission and enrollment, choose your path once you are on campus. To do this, select the MS program in your application and select “Yes” when asked if you plan to continue for a PHD.

Note that there is not a direct PHD program in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics. Also note that admission standards for Mechanical Engineering and Theoretical and Applied mechanics are the same.

Application deadlines (You are encouraged to apply early.)

Spring admission

Master of Engineering: November 1.
Master of Engineering applications are reviewed on a rolling basis; applying early is recommended.
MS and PhD programs: October 1.

Fall admission

Master of Engineering: May 1
Master of Engineering applications are reviewed on a rolling basis; applying early is recommended.
MS and PhD programs: December 15 (for financial support consideration), January 15 (for admission consideration only).

Applicants are strongly encouraged to apply in advance of deadlines as the admissions committee cannot make exceptions for any failures to submit an application before the system closes.

Standardized Test Deadlines

Applicants applying for Fall admission are encouraged to take the GRE and/or TOEFL prior to October 31st. The institution code for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is 1836. You do not need to enter a department code as all departments use the same system. If the GRE is required for your application the score report must be official and delivered through ETS.

The GRE general test is required for applying to the following programs:

  • MSME (on-campus program)
  • MSTAM
  • PHDME
  • PHDTAM

The GRE is not required for applying to the following programs listed below. Our system administrators will waive the GRE requirement from your file if you are applying to one of the following programs:

  • Master of Engineering
  • MSME Online (off-campus program)

Minimum Requirements

Applicants must have a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering or a closely related field from an accredited college in the United States or an approved institution of higher learning abroad in order to be eligible to apply. Applicants with a bachelor degree in math or physics may apply.

GPA Requirements

Previous Undergraduate Study

3.25/4.0 (or equivalent) for the last 60 semester hours or 90 quarter hours

Previous Graduate Study (if applicable)

3.5/4.0 (or equivalent)

 

TOEFL/IELTS Requirements for International applicants* **

TOEFL - full status admission minimum

103 (internet based test)
613 (paper based test)
257 (computer based test)

TOEFL - limited status admission minimum - offered to applicants with truly outstanding academic records who do not meet the minimum TOEFL requirement

90 (internet based test)
577 (paper based test)
233 (computer based test)

IELTS- full status admission minimum

7 total (minimum score of 6 for each sub-section

IELTS - limited status admission minimum - offered to applicants with truly outstanding academic records who do not meet the minimum IELTS requirement

6.5 total (minimum score of 6 for each sub-section)

TOEFL/IELTS scores are valid for two years prior to the proposed term of entry. It is recommended that applicants complete the TOEFL/IELTS exam at least two months prior to the application deadline. Expired scores cannot be considered.

*English requirements for admission differ from English requirements for teaching assistantship (TA) eligibility. In order to be eligible for a TA and any type of funding that includes a TA, all non-native English speakers, regardless of US Citizenship or prior enrollment at Illinois, must have a minimum of 24 on the speaking portion of the TOEFL or at least an 8 on the speaking portion of the IELTS. TOEFL and IELTS scores must be taken within 2 years of the proposed term of entry. This policy is required by the State of Illinois. Please be aware that meeting these requirements is not an automatic award of a TA.

** See if you qualify for a TOEFL/IELTS waiver for admission. Important: MechSE strongly urges all International applicants to provide TOEFL/IELTS scores regardless of waiver eligibility because TOEFL/IELTS scores are required for TA eligibility.

UPDATE 8/15/17: Due to a change in Graduate College policies, applicants to the Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering program qualify for a TOEFL/IELTS waiver if they have completed at least two years of full-time professional work experience in a country where English is the primary language within five years of the proposed term of enrollment at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  At this time, the work experience waiver is not an option for MechSE MS and PHD applicants.

Graduate Application Checklist

  • An application is complete when all components have been received by MechSE. For full consideration, all parts of the application must be received by the deadline.
  • The application process is entirely online. The first step is to apply to the Graduate College. A nonrefundable application fee will be required in order to complete and submit the application. The fee is $70 for domestic applicants and $90 for international applicants.
  • Do not send paper copies of your application materials. The documents submitted online are the versions that are used in the review process.
  • Resume/CV – Max length is 2 pages.
  • Statement of Purpose/Personal Statement – Max length is 3 pages.
  • Letters of Recommendation – The application will require 3 online references. If your reference has difficulties with the electronic system, he/she can contact mechse-grad@illinois.edu.
  • Transcripts – Transcripts must be uploaded in the online application. An acceptable electronic transcript includes the name of the institution, the applicant’s name, and grades for all courses. Additional documents may be required for International applicants.
  • GRE scores – Please see above to see if the GRE is required for your program.
  • Additional requirements for international applicants
    • TOEFL/IELTS – See above for more information
    • Evidence of Financial Resources – While it is preferred to provide proof of funding documentation with the application, proof of funding documentation can be submitted later. More information on proof of funding.
    • Class rank form – Applicants who have attended educational institutions outside of the United States may submit an optional class rank form. If your institution cannot provide this, you do not have to submit the form. It is not required. This form can be emailed to mechse-grad@illinois.edu or mailed to:
      • MechSE Graduate Admissions
        Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering
        138 Mechanical Engineering Building
        1206 W. Green St.
        Urbana, IL 61801
  • Funding - All applicants to on campus MS and PhD programs are automatically considered for financial support in the form of fellowships, research assistantships, and teaching assistantships. More information about fellowships, research assistantships, and teaching assistantships is available.