ESE Graduate Admissions:

Applying to an ESE Master's Program

Submission Deadlines

There are two application cycles for Fall admission. The first deadline for submission is November 15. The second deadline for submission is March 15.

Application Process

All applications for graduate programs for Electrical and Systems Engineering are submitted via an online application system for the University of Pennsylvania. Paper applications are no longer available.

All application materials must be submitted online for swift and accurate completion of your candidate portfolio.  This includes transcripts, recommendations, personal statement, test scores etc.  All these elements are evaluated together as a complete portfolio for candidacy to our graduate programs.  Applications will not be evaluated until they are complete. Applicants may check their status through the online portal. We recommend that you actively check back and review your material to ensure that your application is complete.

For more information about the application process, please see the information provided by Graduate Admissions. Graduate Admissions also provides an FAQ for potential applicants.

Before sending any messages to the admissions team, please review the website for available answers to any questions. Due to the high volume of applications received, there may be a delay in responding to any inquiries. We appreciate your patience.

Candidates are notified by email of admissions decisions by the Associate Dean for Graduate Education of the School of Engineering and Applied Science. Financial awards to Ph.D. students are announced by the ESE Admissions Chair. Please note that decisions cannot be revealed by telephone.

Application Requirements

Statement of Purpose: Please provide a 1-2 page overview of your academic goals, career objectives and any research interests.

Recommendations: Two (2) letters of recommendations are required.  At least one letter of recommendation must be from a faculty member who is familiar with the applicant’s academic record. Electronic and paper-based recommendations are accepted; paper-based letters must arrive in envelopes signed and sealed by the recommender. Further instructions are outlined within the electronic application.

Transcripts: One transcript is required from each post-secondary academic institution that the applicant has attended for two or more terms. Transcript must be official documents that are delivered signed and sealed by the pertinent institution's registrar. Any materials not submitted online should be sent by mail to Graduate Admissions.  International applicants may wish to provide an evaluation of their transcripts provided by the World Education Services -

TOEFL/IELTS: International students and permanent residents whose native language is not English must submit proof of English proficiency.  This may be done in one of the following ways:

  • Submission of an official TOEFL score. Our TOEFL Institution Code (University of Pennsylvania, Engineering & Applied Science) is 2888 (no department code is needed).  Information about the TOEFL can be found at
  • Submission of an official score report for the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).  Information about the IELTS can be found at
  • Completion of at least three (3) years of academic work on a full-time basis at a university-level institution in the United States or in a country in which English is recognized as the official language or where the medium of instruction is English.

Graduate Record Exam (GRE): The GRE is required for all graduate students, both Master's and Ph.D. applicants. Our institution code for submitting scores is 2888 (no department code is needed).  Applications are evaluated as a whole portfolio and not on a single criterion. Thus, we do not adhere to strict cut offs pertaining to test scores.

PLEASE NOTE: Applications are evaluated as a whole portfolio and not on a single criterion. Thus, we do not adhere to strict minimums pertaining to test scores.

Application Fee: A non-refundable fee of $80 must accompany every application.

Additional Documents/Evaluation: Candidates who wish to have their papers, abstracts, talks, portfolios, etc., reviewed as part of the application dossier should not send hard copies. Please link these materials on your web page and include the URLs in your personal statement.

International applicants are not required to provide proof of financial support at the time of application to the ESE graduate program.  This information should not be submitted with the application.