Graduate Admissions FAQ

General Admission Questions

  • The Graduate Program admission cycle begins in October and ends with initial enrollment processing completed in May.

    Master’s and PhD program applications open in October and all application materials are due on February 1. Applications are evaluated by the Graduate Admission Committee, and admission decisions are sent in mid-March. Applicants who are offered admission are invited to participate in admitted student programming, and enrollment deposits are due in mid-April. By mid-May, student records are created and international student 1-20 documents are requested.

  • No. Master’s and PhD program applications open in October and close on February 1.

  • No. Due to the curricular structure of each graduate program, all of our Graduate Programs begin in the Fall semester.

  • Yes. Applicants must fill out a separate application for each program. The admission requirements for each graduate program are different for each program, and we consider applications to each graduate program separately. You will pay an application fee for each application you submit.

    Once your application is evaluated and an admission decision is made, you will receive an admission decision letter for each respective graduate program to which you have applied. While we try our best to provide applicants with all decision letters at one time; you may receive decision letters at differing times as admission decisions are considered for each program.

  • Yes. The Master of Architecture (M.Arch) is a studio-based, professional degree program, accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB).

  • Yes. All of our graduate programs are STEM-eligible. Due to the technical nature of the SoA’s graduate programs, all of our graduate programs have been assigned CIP (Classification of Instructional Programs) codes by the Department of Education that are STEM-eligible.

Application Questions

  • Visit the SoA Graduate Program Admission application portal in SlideRoom and select the application for the program(s) of your choice. Once you begin your application account in SlideRoom, you can login to access your application(s). You can make changes to an “in progress” application until it is submitted. Application submissions are final; you cannot make changes or additions to your application once it has been submitted.

  • No. We do not accept applications completed by third-party consultants. Except for applications made by bona fide not-for-profit organizations that administer foreign student programs (e.g. AMIDEAST, IIE), every application must be completed, in its entirety, by the applicant themselves.

    Partner agencies administering an application on behalf of a foreign student scholar must declare themselves in writing by email to the Director of Recruitment and Enrollment, Alexis McCune Secosky, prior to beginning an application.

    Any application filled out wholly or in part by any person or undisclosed third party other than the applicant will be disqualified.

  • Visit the SlideRoom Applicant Help Center webpage for information on:

    If you encounter any difficulty while using the most up-to-date version of Safari, try switching to Chrome or Firefox. While previous versions of Internet Explorer, including IE9 and IE10, are no longer supported by Microsoft and are not supported browsers, there are currently no known issues using SlideRoom in IE9 and IE10. If you encounter any difficulty while using the most current version Internet Explorer 11, try switching to Chrome or Firefox.

    For help with application-related questions, contact customer service via SlideRoom’s formsite or by emailing

  • If your questions have not been answered by the Graduate Program Admission webpage or the list of FAQs on this page, please contact SoA Graduate Program Admission at

Tuition & Financial Support

  • For Master’s graduate programs (M.Arch, MAAD, and MUD), the cost of Full Time tuition for the 2023-2024 Academic Year (Fall and Spring semesters) is $41,000. For M.S. and PhD graduate programs (MSAECM, MSBPD, MSCD, MSSD, DDes, and all PhD programs), the cost of Full Time tuition for the 2023-2024 Academic Year (Fall and Spring semesters) is $40,000.

    The subsequent year’s tuition is subject to change and will not be determined until March 2024. Please expect that it will be equal to or greater than the per semester cost of the 2023-2024 Academic Year tuition. The Graduate programs offered in the School of Architecture vary in expected completion time, affecting the overall cost of the program. Please refer to individual program curricula to estimate the overall cost of tuition.

  • For the year 2023-2024 CMU's estimated overall cost of attendance for graduate students in the College of Fine Arts (not including tuition) is $31,112 or greater. This includes compulsory fees, living expenses, books and supplies, and health insurance. Please visit the HUB's Graduate Tuition & Fees webpage for a breakdown of these costs and any available updates.

  • All admitted students will automatically be considered for a partial SoA Graduate Student Merit Scholarship. You will be notified in your admission letter should you receive this award. These scholarships are awarded to exceptional students joining the School of Architecture based on the strength of their application and demonstrated potential for advancing in their careers. Merit-based scholarships are based upon the following criteria:

    • Fit for program, commitment to chosen field, clearly defined career goals (Statement of Purpose)

    • Relevant experience, demonstrated leadership (Resume)

    • Competitive standardized test scores (GRE, if required by program)

    • Strong academic record (Transcripts)

    • Letters of recommendation

    • Portfolio (if required by program)

    In addition, Graduate Assistantships are available for full-time Master’s students to apply for each academic semester. This assistantship entails working as an employee of the University for up to 67 hours a semester at a rate of $15 per hour (up to $1000), based upon full-time enrollment. A limited number of Fall and Spring semester assistantships are available for Master students.

  • Comprehensive financial support for incoming, full-time PhD students in residence is provided by the School of Architecture. The package includes full tuition, university fees, full individual health insurance coverage under the university's plan, and a 9-month stipend for work during the academic year. Typical stipend work assignments of teaching, research, or administration will require approximately 15 hours of effort per week during the academic periods and will be arranged in advance of each semester. The financial support package is renewable according to the enrollment terms of the admission offer.


  • Non-native English speaking applicants or applicants whose mother-tongue language is not English are required to provide proof of English language proficiency. The term “non-native English speakers” is defined as those students who speak a language other than English at home. Non-native English speakers are inclusive of both competent biliterate and Limited English Proficiency (LEP) students.

    If your native language is not English AND you will require a visa to attend Carnegie Mellon, you will need to provide a TOEFL score. 

  • Yes. The minimum TOEFL score for acceptance in the School of Architecture is 100, with a minimum subscore of 22 in each category; Speaking, Listening, Reading, and Writing. (Minimum accepted IELTS score is 7.0, with a minimum of 6.5 in each category.) Our graduate committee reserves the right to consider applicants who do not meet our 22 minimum requirement in each category.

    These minimum scores are strictly enforced. We have found that success and happiness in our graduate programs strongly correlates with proficiency in English skills. Our programs are quite rigorous. If you do not meet our application requirements, we suggest that you retake the test before applying.

  • If you will have completed a degree from an American university by August 2020, we still highly recommend you submit a valid TOEFL/IELTS score meeting our minimum requirements. If you previously took the TOEFL/IELTS and choose to not retake the exam, we would appreciate your previous scores as part of your application. If your scores do not meet our minimum criteria, we highly recommend you take the TOEFL/IELTS again.

  • No. Unfortunately we are not able to offer "conditional admission" to any applicant.

  • No.

Consumer Information

CMU has a Consumer Information webpage to provide access to information that current and prospective students of the University may need in order to be informed consumers. Higher education institutions that receive federal student financial assistance are required by the U.S. government to make this information available. This information may be changed from time to time as required.