Frequently Asked Questions

Admissions Questions 

How can I check my application status? 

You may check your status by logging into your Applicant Information System (AIS) website.

What are the TAMU Institution Code and Graduate Major Code for the Department of Chemical Engineering?

For reporting test scores, use code 6003.

What is the deadline for applying for admission and for financial aid?

Application deadlines for international applicants are established for each session. The deadlines are:

  • Fall Semester - December 1
  • Spring Semester - October 1

Furthermore, these deadlines apply for all students applying for financial aid from the department. Applications received after the deadline can be considered for the next full semester.

How do I select my research advisor?

The usual procedure is for new students to first become familiar with research activities in the Department of Chemical Engineering by attending a series of seminars given by the faculty during the first fall semester. All students selecting research advisors are required to attend all seminars, even if they already have a preferred research area. Students then submit a list of research advisors they would like to work for to the department head. The department head will decide in consultation with the graduate advisor and the rest of the faculty which students are assigned to which faculty member. Every effort is made to give the students one of their top choices for research advisor.

How much do I get paid?

All of our Ph.D. students enjoy full competitive stipends ($2200 per month for students starting in Fall 2011) as well as full medical benefits and tuition and fees. M.S. students are usually not supported.

Can I defer the application fee until I am admitted?

All applicants who are US citizens or US permanent residents do not need to pay the application fee as the department will pay the fee for them (choose the pay-by-check option for submitting the application). As far as all others are concerned, the application fee cannot be deferred or waived. It is the policy of the Graduate School that the fee be received along with all other required documents before an application is evaluated. Applications received without the fee are held in the Office of Admissions.

On what basis are admissions decisions made?

Admissions decisions are based on evaluation of your complete undergraduate (and graduate) record, GRE scores, and letters of recommendation. Generally, a minimum GPR of 3.3 is required to be considered for admission into the graduate program. However, please note that the average GPR for admitted students in previous years was 3.65. While there is no minimum GRE score required, the average quantitative GRE score for students accepted is 165; the average verbal GRE score is 156. Each candidate is evaluated individually by the departmental graduate admission and recruiting committee that makes admission recommendations to the graduate school. International students should be in the top 10% of their class

Is it possible to tell me what my chances are of being accepted before I apply?

Regrettably the department does not have the resources to offer pre-screening of applications. It is recommended that you contact the advising staff at your own undergraduate institution for an evaluation of your current record and suggestions regarding where to apply for graduate school. Your undergraduate record, performance on the GRE, any undergraduate research experience, letters of recommendation, and your personal statement are all considered in our decision regarding admission.

Will you consider my application without my final semesters transcripts?

If you otherwise meet the qualifications for the department, you will be accepted, pending receipt of your final transcripts.

Is spring semester admission possible?

Spring admissions are possible. However, the overwhelming majority of newly admitted graduate students will enter the program in the fall semester.

What is the deadline for accepting an offer of admission?

The standard deadline for accepting an offer of admission is April 15. However, we would appreciate your letting us know of your acceptance decision as soon as possible. This will enable us to equitably distribute our financial aid to all qualified applicants.

What if I have a non-chemical engineering undergraduate degree?

The department offers a science majors program that is available and is described in our graduate handbook for those who have undergraduate degrees in science or engineering, but not in chemical engineering. These students may be required to take selected undergraduate courses in the chemical engineering department, and possibly additional chemistry courses depending on their background. Admission to the department and the science major program is made on a case-by-case basis.

What is the English Language Proficiency Exam?

If you are an international student and score below 146 on the verbal section of the GRE and below 550 on the TOEFL then you are required to pass an English Language Proficiency Exam (ELPE) before beginning your coursework. Should you fail the exam, you will be required to take an English language course.

I have read all the information on your web pages but I still have questions. Whom do I contact?

If you still have questions about admission to the program or the program itself, then please contact che-admissions@tamu.edu. Please refrain from contacting individual faculty members prior to being admitted and starting your first semester of graduate school. Students who are admitted to the graduate program are invited to visit the department, meet with faculty and current graduate students, and tour labs and facilities at the department's expense in the early spring. During those visits, faculty and graduate students make every effort to clear their schedules of the many obligations and appointments which may make them unavailable at other times. It is highly recommended to plan to visit the department during the scheduled "recruiting weekend". The dates and details will be included in the offer of admission letter.

Financial Aid Questions

Is it necessary to submit a separate application for financial aid?

No. All students who indicate a need for financial aid on the application for admission to graduate school will automatically be considered.

As an M.S. student, can I receive a stipend?

M.S. students do usually not receive a stipend.

As a Ph.D. student, can I receive a stipend?

As a general rule, students who are accepted to the Ph.D. program receive a stipend. In addition, tuition, fees, and health insurance is provided. For exceptional students, a bonus may be added. Support for Ph.D. students is provided by the department until a research advisor is chosen during the first semester and the support is then continued by the research advisor. Some students may receive financial support from government, industry, or foundations. For these students, their monthly stipend depends upon their funding source. In most cases this support is comparable to the regular stipend, however, if the funding source is low, then the department and/or the advisor can provide supplemental funds on a case-by-case basis.

Is financial aid possible without a degree in chemical engineering?

All requests for financial aid are evaluated on an individual basis. We expect that a large majority of students offered financial aid beginning in their first year of graduate study will be those with B.S. or M.S. degrees in chemical engineering. However, outstanding students with B.S. or M.S. degrees in other disciplines may also qualify for financial aid in their first year of graduate study.

Questions About Our Program

What is the first year experience like? 

Our first-year students study two core courses during the first semester (thermodynamics, and mathematics) and may have teaching/grading responsibilities during this semester. The most important decision that students have to make during their first semester is which research advisor to work for. The choice of a research advisor usually determines the field of research and the research project and the research supervisor will serve as the primary contact person for the student from then on. In the second semester, students usually take the last two core course (transport and kinetics) and spend a significant portion of their time working on their research project.

What is the ratio of Ph.D. to M.S. students? Admissions are heavily weighted toward Ph.D. students over M.S. students.

To get a Ph.D., must I first get an M.S. degree?

No, the M.S. degree is not a prerequisite for the Ph.D. degree. In fact, there are more students that enter the Ph.D. program with a B.S. than with a M.S.

Can I do a part-time graduate degree?

Part-time programs are possible but rare. A number of graduate courses are scheduled throughout the day.

How long does it take to get a graduate degree?

The answer depends primarily upon the student. An M.S. degree typically requires 1.5 to 2.5 years, with 2 years being the average. A Ph.D. degree typically requires 3 to 6 years beyond the B.S. with 4 years being the average.

Questions About Housing

What housing accommodations are available to me?

Texas A&M University does not have dormitory housing for the fall or spring semester for graduate students. The University maintains a limited number of apartments for married students or single graduate students who have roommates. For information, contact: University Apartments Office Texas A&M University 3365 TAMU College Station, TX 77843-3365 The Office of Student Life Programs provides listings of apartments and houses available in the community. For more information contact: Off-Campus Student Services Texas A&M University 1257 TAMU College Station, TX 77843-1257 Please visit the website at studentlife.tamu.edu for additional information. Also, the following link is a housing locator service: http://studentlife.tamu.edu/agoss.offcampushousing. There is a wide choice of housing and prices are relatively inexpensive compared to prices at other universities.

How do I commute to the campus if I live off-campus?

Transit provides a convenient and economical shuttle servicing the Bryan/College Station community. Service is provided between the hours of 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. Please visit the website for additional information and schedules: http://transport.tamu.edu/busroutes/