Application Materials

You will be required to upload a copy of your transcript into your admissions portal, but an official transcript will be requested if you are admitted to the program. When it is received, you will be enrolled.

A $75 fee is typically required alongside your application, but we do offer waivers. If you are a first-generation college student, have participated in a program such as NNE or SACNAS (among many others), or are unable to apply because of the fee, please contact us at

The MSE application requires two letters of recommendation. Your recommenders will submit their recommendations via the online application.

If you have worked for several years, it is expected that some of your recommendations will come from non-academic sources. What should be avoided is having mostly non-academic recommendations when your last several years have been in academia, and vice versa.

We require the use of the online application recommendation section for recommenders’ submissions. Choosing this option in the application will trigger an email to your recommender with explicit instructions on how to submit their recommendation.

The official form is a part of the online recommendation. Comments will be accepted even if the official form is not used. However, we strongly encourage the form to be used because it includes a table that provides us with additional information.

ETS, GRE, and TOEFL Exams

Our institution code is (4655) for the GRE and (C559) for the TOEFL exam. Our department code is (0402) for the GRE and (78) for the TOEFL exam.

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is the world’s most widely used admissions test for graduate and professional schools. Visit the Education Testing Service (ETS) website to view current updates for testing available in your country.

The Whiting School of Engineering requires GRE General Test scores for applications to all master’s programs. However, the Department of Computer Science does not review the scores nor do they have any impact on the outcome of its decision during the application review process. UPDATE: Effective for the Fall 2024 term only  applicants to the MSE CS program are not required to submit GRE scores. It is an optional material to submit with your application.

All non-native English speakers must take either the TOEFL or IELTS exam. Neither the TWE nor the TSE is required, but it is recommended.


  • TOEFL: 100 or above
  • IELTS: 7 or above

The Department of Computer Science does accept IELTS.

Copies will be accepted, although it is best to have your GRE scores sent through ETS. Applicants should request recent GRE scores from ETS and submit them to Johns Hopkins University before the application deadline. In order for your application to be reviewed, you must include the university’s institution code in your request to ETS. The Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering’s institution code is 4655.

TOEFL results should be sent directly to the Engineering Graduate Admissions Office by either the IELTS Global Recognition System or ETS, which also administers TOEFL.

If admitted, you will be required to submit your official final documents directly to the WSE Graduate Admissions Office.

The scores must be new enough that ETS still considers them valid and will provide an official score report. Currently, the ETS sets this limit at five years. TOEFL exam scores are valid for two years from your test date.

The minimum scores are as follows:

  • TOEFL: 100 or above
  • IELTS: 7 or above

Getting Accepted

First, we consider the source of the letter. A letter from your cousin who happens to teach at a two-year college is weighed significantly less than a letter from a researcher at a top computer science school!

Next, we look for evidence of research potential. In particular, evidence of outstanding performance in past projects is of high importance. Somewhat less important is evidence of outstanding ability in the classroom.

A good recommender should know you well and be able to rank you very favorably in comparison with your peers.

Yes, we do. Both your grades and courses are important—primarily your grades in CS courses during your last two years of undergraduate study.

Previous research experience is the easiest way to be placed on the top of the applicant interest list. For this reason, we encourage you to send a link to detailed information on your past research experience, if applicable. Projects performed for classes, as part of a job, or on your own are also important, particularly if the projects are research-related. Make sure to include a description of these projects with your application—better yet, link to an online file. Previous teaching experience also improves your chances.

Statements of purpose are very important, as they allow us to better form a picture of each applicant and convince us that you have the attitude needed to succeed in a graduate program.

The Graduate Affairs and Admissions Office does not accept paper copies of statements of purpose as applicants are expected to submit this document through the online application. The uploaded file cannot exceed 500KB in size. The document must also adhere to 1-inch margins. With regards to a Sample of Work (if your department requires this or its applicants have a habit of submitting it anyway), the online application can only accept samples of work up to 500KB in size. The document must also adhere to 1-inch margins. Please do not send duplicates of documents that were successfully uploaded to the online system.

We encourage you to include any information that you think will help us make a more accurate assessment of your abilities. However, it is generally better to give short abstracts of papers or projects (links to online versions are even better) rather than full papers or reports.

The department regrets that we are unable to give financial aid to MSE students. Once you are here, you can apply for part-time student work as a course assistant or for other types of work; however, we cannot grant tuition waivers for this work. MSE students are never given a stipend of any form, but may be hired on an hourly basis.

A $75 fee is typically required alongside your application.

If you satisfy all the qualifying requirements for the PhD program and a professor wishes to serve as your PhD thesis advisor and secure financial support for your research, you can become a PhD candidate. You will still have to apply for admission into the program and be approved by the Admissions Committee and the Department Chair.

Entering students are expected to have completed a program of study equivalent to that required by the BS in computer science. Applicants from other disciplines are required to have coursework (or equivalent experience) in intermediate programming (C++ and Java), data structures, automata theory, computer systems fundamentals, and algorithms.

Full-time working professionals should apply to JHU’s Engineering for Professionals program. This is a completely separate program from the day school and offers a large number of computer science courses online, in the evening, and during the summer at several locations in the Baltimore-Washington area that lead to an MS degree or post-master’s certificate. No PhD degrees are offered online.

For more information, and visit Engineering for Professionals website or email