Graduate Admission Information ~ CCEE


Requirements for Admission

Non-Engineering Prerequisites

International Applicants

Application Process
Application Deadlines
Review Process & Completion
Tuition & Financial Aid

Dept. Funding

Admissions FAQ


  • Submission of Application and Supplemental Materials:
    • All information and materials are uploaded to the application through the Graduate School’s application Portal.
    • Documents such as letters of recommendation, test scores, etc. can arrive after the application is submitted.
  • Application Fees:
    • $75 for domestic & US Permanent Residents, $85 for international, $25 for graduate certificate programs
    • CAN NOT be waived.
  • Application Deadlines are soft deadlines.
  • International Student Admission Information
  • Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.
  • Changes to the application are not accepted after electronic submission.
  • GRE scores are not required for admission.  Scores can be submitted if the applicant wishes to include the information.
  • EOL & DE APPLICANTS:  If admitted, applicants must be able identify an approved testing center and/or proctor for tests and exams.  You can find the guidelines, rules, and instructions on this at EOL Exams and Proctor Selection.
  • FACULTY SPONSORS/P.I./ADVISORS prior to admission:  Applications DO NOT need to secure a faculty advisor prior to being admitted and during the application process.  Assistantships are offered on a competitive basis; thus, not all admitted students will receive one.

Requirements for Admission:

  • Previous Degree:
    • A bachelor’s degree in engineering.  Most of our graduate students have a background in Civil Engineering, Environmental Engineering, or a related engineering discipline (e.g., Chemical and Mechanical).  Many successful students in our programs have backgrounds in a variety of engineering disciplines.
      • Applicants without a degree in a related field will need to take required background courses to bridge the non-engineering gap.  Non-Engineering Prerequisites: Applicants without a degree in a related engineering field will need to take required background courses to bridge the non-engineering gap. The key purpose of the bridging includes: 1) to develop the necessary fundamental engineering knowledge to be prepared for graduate engineering courses; and 2) to build up sufficient engineering credit hours. That list of background courses can be found by clicking this link:  List of Required Background Courses
  • GPA 3.0 or above:
    • An overall GPA of at least 3.0/4.0.
  • Complete Application (see Admissions Process)

International Students

  1. Provide Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with a total score of at least 80 on the Internet-based Test (iBT), and with minimum test scores for each section of:
    • Listening 18 points
    • Reading 18 points
    • Writing 18 points
    • Speaking 18 points – for admission, 23 points – for TA appointment where TA has direct verbal interactions with students, 26 points – for TA appointment where TA presents lectures in the class or laboratory NOTE: The current computer- and paper-based versions of the TOEFL test will be given until the iBT version is implemented in a particular location. Computer-based TOEFL scores must be 213 or higher (with at least 17 on three sections and no section score below 13). The paper-based test requires a score of 550 or higher (with scores of 50 on at least two of the three sections and no section score below 45).
  2. Provide International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores with an overall band score of at least 6.5. Minimum test scores for each section are listed below:
    • Listening 6.5
    • Reading 6.5
    • Writing 6.5
    • Speaking 6.5 – for admission, 7.0 – for TA appointment
  3. Provide Duolingo with a total score of 110 or better.
  4. be a citizen of a country where English is the official language and the language of instruction in higher education;
  5. have successfully (cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher) completed at least one year of full-time study in a degree program at a regionally accredited four-year US College or university.

Application Process:

1.  A Complete Online Application
2.  Required application materials
3.  Transcripts: UNOFFICIAL transcripts in English
4.  Statement of Purpose/Personal Statement
  • Approximately 500 words (can go above within reason).
  • Your statement should/can address any or all of the following suggestions (these are not required merely suggestions):
  • Address your purpose in graduate study
  • The area of study in which you with to specialize
  • Your intended future use of your graduate degree
  • Correlate your academic background with your extracurricular experience to show how they unite to make you a special candidate
  • Any problems or inconsistencies in your records or scores such as a bad semester.
  • Any special conditions not revealed elsewhere in the application.
  • This statement should contain information about you as a person.
5.  Resume
6.  Three Letters of Recommendation
  • Three strong recommendations from persons able to comment on the applicant’s qualifications for graduate study.  List the name and email address for each reference on your application. References will be notified by email with a link to respond.  Paper recommendations will not be accepted.
  • Application can be submitted before all letters have been submitted.
  • Applications can be reviewed so long as at least two letters have been received.
7.  TOELF/IELTS/Duolingo Scores:  OFFICIAL scores required
  • Institution Code for NCSU:  5496
  • IELTS scores can be sent directly to The Graduate School
  • Uploading copies of test reports with your online application safeguards against delays in reporting by the testing agencies.  See Admission Requirements for details on scores.
  • Scores that do not meet the minimum requirements for admission will not be reviewed.

***GRE SCORES ARE NOT REQUIRED for admission***

Application Deadlines

Entry Term
Fall Spring Summer I Summer II
Domestic Students

Admission only

Admission and financial aid


Jun 1

Dec 15


Nov 1

Jul 1


Mar 1

Dec 15


May 1

Dec 15

International Students

Admission only

Admission and financial aid


Mar 1

Dec 15


Jul 1

Jul 1


Dec 15

Dec 15


Dec 15

Dec 15

(The posted deadlines are soft deadlines.  Applications will be accepted until admission slots are full. See note below.)

Applicants who apply after the deadline:

  • Domestic applicants are permitted to submit applications after the posted deadline.  Processing and review is not guaranteed to be completed on time and the applicant may be asked to defer their application to another semester.
  • Strong applications will be considered for financial aid even if submitted after the deadlines stated in the table.

The posted deadline is the last date to:

  • Pay your application fee
  • Complete your online application
  • Submit ALL required application materials

Review Process and Completion

  • Review of your application does not begin until all application materials and credentials have been received.
  • Applications typically take a minimum of three weeks to be reviewed after marked as “complete” in the system.
  • The department submits a decision to The Graduate School.
  • Applicant is notified through the application portal. Admission decisions can be viewed by logging into your application: Application Program.

Tuition & Financial Aid

Please visit the NCSU Cashier’s Office website for information on tuition rates for the current academic year.  This chart lists estimated annual expenses for full-time graduate students.


Funding is offered to the most qualified students at the earliest possible date. Applicants are encouraged to complete the application and submit all online supporting documentation well ahead of the deadlines listed above.

There is not a separate application process to be considered for any funding.  Click the button in the application indicating you wish to be considered.

Department Funding

The Civil, Engineering, Construction, & Environmental Engineering department offers financial aid in the form of Teaching and Research Assistantships (TA’s and RA’s) to highly qualified applicants. If you are interested in seeking aid through the department, your preferences should be listed when applying. We do not offer aid to MCE or MENE students (on-campus or distance).

Admission decisions are typically made first, and then financial aid decisions later. If you have requested financial aid we will send you an email if a financial aid offer is being made.

US Citizens

Financial aid may be available on a limited basis. Long-term, low-interest federal loans including the Federal Perkins Loan and Federal Stafford Loans may be obtained. For more information and application materials, visit the Office of Financial Aid.

International Students

International Student Admissions and Resources

Graduate Admission of Non-US Citizens Flowchart

International students are required to show ability to meet the financial requirements of tuition, fees and living expenses for themselves and any dependent family members for at least one year to receive documents for visa applications. International students should visit the Office of International Services website for complete information regarding estimated living expenses and required proof of financial responsibility.

Nonimmigrant students in the US are not eligible for most federal financial aid programs for which US citizens and lawful permanent resident students normally apply.

Financial Aid Websites

If you are not awarded financial aid by NC State, you may wish to seek additional sources of aid. Following is a list of sites with information about financial aid opportunities, and/or organizations who offer financial aid for study in the United States:

Graduate Admission FAQ

What are the basic admission requirements?
Due to the large number of applications, pre-screening is not performed. You will have to formally apply before an assessment of your admissibility can be made. However, below are the basic guidelines. Please note that there are a wide variety of factors that are considered. More detailed information can be found on the Admissions page.
GPA – a minimum of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
TOEFL/IELTS – a required minimum TOEFL Internet-based Test (iTB) score for international students whose native language is not English of 18 on each part and a total score of at least 80. We also accept the IELTS exam (minimum score of 6.5 on each section).
GRE – there is no minimum required GRE score but qualitative scores should be competitive with the current applicant pool.

With less than 3.0 GPA, direct admission is not possible; if the overall application package looks acceptable, the review committee may recommend that a few (3-4) courses be taken as a non-degree studies (NDS) student and demonstrate proficiency. After the completion those courses, the review committee will review (or re-review) an application for admission consideration. Note that an applicant could transfer up to 12 hrs of graduate coursework, with at least a B grade, to your graduate coursework plan (i.e., you could transfer the NDS credits with a B or better grade).

GRE scores are no longer required for admission to any of our graduate programs. Applicants are welcome to submit GRE scores with their applications if they choose to do so. Since GRE scores are no longer required, they can not be used to judge or determine admission to the program. Submitted scores will be reviewed as reference only.

We receive a large number of requests for application fee waiver. NC State University is a public university, and we do not have a way to “waive” the application fee for anyone. The fee has to be paid by someone, either the applicant or the program. The program does not have the funds to cover the fee for all the applicants given the number of applications we receive. Thus, we are not in a position to cover anyone’s application fees.

Yes, as long as there is enough time to process the application. International students should also consider the time required to process their visa and travel documents to arrive before the start of the term.

The cost of attendance can be found on this chart Cost of Attendance: Graduate Student. Tuition and fees are subject to change each new academic year.

Depending on the prior academic preparation and experience, there are possible pathways to bridge from a non-engineering undergraduate degree to a master’s degree in civil engineering. The key purpose of the bridging includes: 1) to develop the necessary fundamental engineering knowledge to be prepared for graduate engineering courses; and 2) to build up sufficient engineering credit hours. With these considerations in mind, we have suggested lists of science/math and engineering courses for each area of concentration (e.g., transportation engineering, structural engineering, etc.). You can find that suggest list of background courses here:

Yes, both thesis and non-thesis programs are considered to be in the STEM field.

We fund a small percentage of our graduate students generally in the form of a Research Assistantship (RA) or a Teaching Assistantship (TA). International students must take and pass an NC State University speaking test before they can apply for a TA. RAs are available from individual faculty and vary according to the active grants and contracts that the faculty member has at any particular time. You may go to the Research link at our departmental web site and review our faculty interests. You may then contact those faculty members whose technical interests overlap with your own and inquire directly about possible research opportunities. Generally, TAs and RAs are not granted to non-thesis students. Funding decisions are usually made after admission.

Statements of Purpose can go over the word count limit within reason.

Yes, official scores are required during the application review process. An application will not be considered complete until officials scores have been received and usually not released to the department for review until complete. If an application is reviewed with only unofficial scores, a decision will not be made or submitted to the Graduate School without official test scores.

No, it is not necessary (or recommended) to contact faculty members to find or secure funding. Funding is determined after the admission decision. If a faculty member or members are interested in recruiting applicants, that faculty person will reach out to the applicant.