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Applying to the Program

How To Apply to the Materials Science and Engineering Department:
Application Deadlines:
Fall Term (September):
Ph.D. December 15 — M.S. January 15
Winter Term (January):
October 15


Application FAQ

Application Materials:

Submit Online:

  • Three Letters of Recommendation - It is strongly recommended that you determine your three recommenders before starting your application as they cannot be modified on the form once entered.

  • Academic Statement of Purpose - The Statement of Purpose should be a concise, well-written statement about your academic and research background, your career goals, and how Michigan's graduate program will help you meet your career and educational objectives.

  • Personal Statement - The Personal Statement should contain your background and life experiences, including cultural, geographical, financial, educational or other opportunities or challenges, motivated your decision to pursue a graduate degree at the University of Michigan.

  • MSE Research Area Interest Ranking Form (PhD only) - MS applicants can indicate their interest in the academic/personal statement.

  • Unofficial Transcripts (undergraduate and graduate) Upload a scanned version of your academic record/transcript into the electronic application. Scan at a maximum resolution of 300dpi for black and white documents and 200dpi for color documents.  The online transcript will be considered unofficial. Uploaded documents as a PDF file are preferred if possible.

  • Application form http://www.rackham.umich.edu/admissions/apply_now/apply_annarbor/rackham_graduate_program_application/


Submitting Transcripts:

Official Transcripts - Submit one official academic record/transcript from each institution where you have earned or will earn a Bachelor’s, Master’s, Professional, and Doctoral degree. Include your date of birth or U-M ID# with each academic record/transcript to aid in matching your document to your application.  Submit transcripts to the Rackham Graduate School address below.

Each transcript/academic record submitted to the Rackham Graduate School must include your full name, University of Michigan ID number (UMID) and/or date of birth to match your document to your application.

Submitting your transcripts is a two-step process:

  1. Applicants will scan and upload an official transcript/academic record that displays the institutional seal and signature of the Registrar or Recorder of Records into the online application.
  2. Applicants are also required to submit an official transcript/academic record by mail or as an e-transcript to Rackham before the graduate program application deadline. The official transcript/academic record must be received in an envelope sealed by the issuing institution.
Please also watch this video about submitting transcripts:  http://www.rackham.umich.edu/prospective-students/admissions/transcripts

E-Transcript Option:

This method saves you time, effort and the expense of mailing the transcript/academic record that is required during the initial processing and review of your application. To ensure that Rackham can match your transcripts/academic records with your application, please upload a completed Transcripts/Academic Records Submission Form when you request your electronic transcripts/academic records. Please note that not all Registrar or Recorder of Records office e-transcript systems allow for an upload.

An official transcript may be sent electronically by the Registrar or Recorder of Records using the institution’s secure electronic submission system to Rackham at rack-etranscripts@umich.edu. The requirements are:

  • The name and title of the Registrar must appear on the transcript.
  • The transcript /academic record is:
    • sent by the Registrar and must be submitted in PDF format.
    • presented with an English translation provided by your institution when the institution issues transcripts in the native language.
    • not acceptable from a personal e-mail address.

If your Registrar requires a Rackham Graduate School address, use the Mail Option address indicated below.

Below is a partial list of institutions that provide official electronic transcripts:

  • Columbia University
  • Cornell University
  • Duke University
  • Indiana University
  • Michigan State University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Stanford University
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Illinois
  • University of North Carolina-Wilmington


Request Official Scores to be reported to the University of Michigan from ETS:

  • GRE Scores (Institution Code: 1839, Department Code 1402)
  • TOEFL Scores if applicable. (Institution Code: 1839, Department Code: 69) Applicants whose native language is not English must demonstrate English proficiency. Applicants are required to provide an official score report from either the Michigan English Language Battery (MELAB), the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the International English Language Testing Systems (IELTS), or the Examination for the Certificate of Proficiency in English (ECPE). Photocopies and/or faxes of English proficiency scores will not be accepted.
    • Minimum score requirements for the MELAB, TOEFL, IELTS, and ECPE test can be found in the section:   Applicants Whose Native Language is Not English
    • Applicants who have earned a degree from an institution where the language of instruction is exclusively English, (e.g.:. U.S., United Kingdom, Australia) are exempt from submitting a MELAB, TOEFL, IELTS, or ECPE score.

Rackham English Proficiency Exemptions

You qualify for an exemption from taking an English proficiency examination if one of the following criteria are met:

    • You are a native speaker of English.
    • You completed all of your undergraduate education and earned an undergraduate degree at an institution where all classes are taught exclusively in English.
    • You completed all of your undergraduate education and earned an undergraduate degree in one of the following countries, Australia, English speaking Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, or the United Kingdom.
    • You completed all four years of your undergraduate education at an institution in the United States and earned a degree from that institution.
    • You completed all of your graduate education, a minimum of two years duration, and earned a graduate degree in one of the following countries, the United States, Australia, English speaking Canada, Ireland, New Zealand or the United Kingdom. Graduate education includes Master's, Ph.D., and professional degrees. Graduate degrees that are exclusively research based are excluded.
    • Current U-M student.

For additional information about how to apply or submitting transcripts, please visit this website: http://www.rackham.umich.edu/admissions/transcripts

Contact Information:

University of Michigan

Materials Science and Engineering Department

Graduate Program Office, 3062 HH Dow

2300 Hayward Street

Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2136

Phone: 734.763.9790

Fax: 734.763.4788

e-mail:  reneeh@umich.edu


Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies

Office of Graduate Admissions

0120 Rackham Building

915 E. Washington St.

Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1070

Tel: 734.764.8129

Fax: 734.647.7740

E-mail: rackadmis@umich.edu



MSE Departmental Financial Aid Information

MSE PhD students are offered continuous support for the duration of their studies, through fellowships, research assistantships, teaching assistantships, or some combination of these.  All types of support provide similar funding with a monthly stipend, plus tuition, fees, and health benefits.  In addition to Department financial aid, applicants are also considered for various Rackham and College of Engineering fellowships, and are encouraged to apply for nationally competitive fellowships available from NSF, NASA, DoD, and other sources.  All support is contingent upon satisfactory progress toward the Ph.D. degree, and the availability of funds.

More information:  http://www.engin.umich.edu/gradadmissions/funding/

For questions please contact:

Renee Hilgendorf, 3062 HH Dow, (734) 763-9790, reneeh@umich.edu


Admission Decision Timeline:

January - February:  PhD admission/financial aid offers are sent via e-mail to applicants.

Early March:  MS admission offers are sent via e-mail to applicants.

Late March:  Notification to applicants who do not receive admission are sent.

All applicants are notified via e-mail as soon an admission decision is reached.