Doctoral Admissions

Ph.D. in Computer Science (Pittsburgh)

trees and pedestrian bridge between Gates Center and Newell Simon Hall, Carnegie Mellon University

If you are applying to the Ph.D. program in Computer Science in either Pittsburgh or Portugal you must apply online. Instructions for each program are available below.


    • Application opens - September 7, 2021
    • Application Deadline: December 9, 2021 (11:59 a.m. EST)
    • If you need to retake your TOEFL, IELTS and/or GRE for this application, then you must take the exam no later than November 9, 2021. We will not accept any exam scores taken past the date of November 9, 2021 because the test scores will not be reportable until after our December 9, 2021 deadline.
    • The application fee is $125 for one program and $75 for each additional program.
    • Waivers for participants of specific professional and educational organizations programs and financial hardship fee waiver information is available on the SCS Fee Waivers page. 

Required Documents & Support Materials

You must submit the following with your application:

  • For Fall 2021 applications, Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test scores are optional. If you have taken the GRE, you are encouraged to submit your score. If you are not submitting a score, other parts of your application will be used evaluate your preparation for our PhD program.
  • If you are an international applicant and your native language (language spoken from birth) is not English, an official copy of an English proficiency score report is required. The English proficiency requirement cannot be waived for any reason. We strongly encourage applicants to take either the TOEFL or IELTS. In cases where these are not available it is acceptable to take the Duolingo test. We discourage the use of the "TOEFL IPT Plus for China", since speaking is not scored. Additional details are provided on the Frequently Asked Questions page.
  • A PDF of your most recent transcript from each college and/or university you attended, even if no degree was granted.
  • Your curriculum vitae in PDF format.
  • Your Statement of Purpose — a concise one- or two-page essay describing your primary research interests, related experiences and objective in pursuing a Ph.D. in computer science.
  • Three letters of recommendation, at least two of which are from faculty or recent employers.

Applications and all supporting documents, including letters of recommendation, must be received by the final deadline of December 9, 2021. You may continue to edit your application until the final deadline.

For more on the application process, check out the SCS Online Graduate Application Instructions.

For general questions about applying to doctoral programs in the School of Computer Science email: applygrad@cs.cmu.edu

Ph.D. in Computer Science (Portugal)

The dual-degree Portugal Ph.D. program uses the School of Computer Science online application for admissions. Students are admitted for the fall semester and cannot begin in the spring.

    • Application opens - September 7, 2021
    • Application Deadline: December 9, 2021 (11:59 a.m. EST)
    • If you need to retake your TOEFL, IELTS and/or GRE for this application, then you must take the exam no later than November 9, 2021. We will not accept any exam scores taken past the date of November 9, 2021 because the test scores will not be reportable until after our December 9, 2021 deadline.
    • The application fee is $125 for one program and $75 for each additional program.
    • Waivers for participants of specific professional and educational organizations programs and financial hardship fee waiver information is available on the SCS Fee Waivers page. 

Required Documents & Support Materials

You must submit the following with your application:

  • Select "Ph.D. in Computer Science/Dual Degree Portugal" in the application.
  • For Fall 2021 applications, Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test scores are optional. If you have taken the GRE, you are encouraged to submit your score. If you are not submitting a score, other parts of your application will be used evaluate your preparation for our PhD program.
  • If you are an international applicant and your native language (language spoken from birth) is not English, an official copy of an English proficiency score report is required. The English proficiency requirement cannot be waived for any reason. We strongly encourage applicants to take either the TOEFL or IELTS. In cases where these are not available it is acceptable to take the Duolingo test. We discourage the use of the "TOEFL IPT Plus for China", since speaking is not scored. Additional details are provided on the Frequently Asked Questions page.
  • A PDF of your most recent transcript from each college and/or university you attended, even if no degree was granted.
  • Your curriculum vitae in PDF format.
  • Your Statement of Purpose — a concise one- or two-page essay describing your primary research interests, related experiences and objective in pursuing a Ph.D. in computer science.
  • Three letters of recommendation, at least two of which are from faculty or recent employers.

You must also apply to one of these Portuguese institutions, following their application guidelines:

For more on the application process, check out the SCS Online Graduate Application Instructions.