Application Deadlines:

  • The PhD deadline for fall is December 15th. (No recruiting for spring admissions.)
  • The application will be available for submission on or around August 15.

Who Should Apply?

We seek students from a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences who have excelled in research and their academic studies proportional to the opportunities they have been afforded in their academic career.

We are committed to a diverse community at Hopkins, as diversity is a key element of the educational experience of our students. Diversity presents itself in many different forms, such as socioeconomic status, race or ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, nationality or place of origin, disability, unique work or life experience, etc. Our goal through the admissions process is to cultivate an environment that values diverse backgrounds, approaches, and perspectives.

Johns Hopkins University does not discriminate on the basis of gender, marital status, pregnancy, race, color, ethnicity, national origin, age, disability, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status, or other legally protected characteristic in any student program, activity administered by the university, admission, or employment.

You can learn more about our commitment to diversity here.

No. Johns Hopkins is a highly interdisciplinary school, and this is reflected in the Department of Computer Science, as well. Applicants have degrees in CS, ECE, linguistics, cognitive science, math, biomedical engineering, and many other areas. While we want to see some experience with CS, we take students from a diverse range of backgrounds.

No. While many of our applicants have publications demonstrating their research experience, we care more about what you did with the opportunities you were given. Some students come from major US universities with active research programs, in which case they had the opportunity to publish. Other students come from smaller schools without such opportunities. Each year we accept many students without prior publications and reject students with multiple publications.

Yes. 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.

The Application Process

Learn about the standardized tests, recommendations, transcripts, and application requirements for doctoral programs at the Whiting School of Engineering.

The personal statement is optional, but it presents an opportunity for you to tell us something about yourself that we can’t learn from any other part of your application. It’s a place where you can communicate an aspect of your identity or experiences, interests, and things about yourself that go beyond your academic record and accolades.

Most of our larger research areas accept PhD students every year.

If you have specific questions about a faculty member’s research, you are welcome to contact them. We recommend you keep the message short and focused on that faculty member’s interests. Don’t be offended if they don’t reply. A generic email to a faculty member before you apply will not improve (or hurt) your chances of being accepted.

Each application cycle is different, and the timing of the PhD and MSE review processes occur roughly simultaneously. Whether we’re able to consider your PhD application for acceptance into our MSE program depends on several factors: the number of MSE applications received, the speed at which our MSE admissions committee can review said applications, and the number of MSE offers made during a given cycle.

In short, we unfortunately cannot guarantee that we will be able to review your PhD application for our MSE program. But if you email Kim Franklin by February 8 stating that you’d like your PhD application to be cloned for MSE review, it is likely that we will be able to accommodate your request. Please keep in mind that you may not have received your formal PhD admissions decision by this point.

The application is entirely online. GRE and TOEFL scores are sent electronically and directly to us by ETS, requiring no input from you. If you are admitted into the PhD program, you may have to physically mail additional documentation to us (for example, your official transcript—even though an unofficial one is fine for the application); in such cases, please send your mail to the Engineering Graduate Admissions office:

Johns Hopkins University
Graduate Academic Affairs
Engineering Graduate Admissions
Wyman Park Building, 3rd Floor West
3400 North Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21218

To contact the office, please visit their website.

The Graduate Admissions office answers these types of inquiries. Individual departments do not collect or record any application documents. Graduate Admissions will be able to research your inquiry and and answer you within ten business days. Please email them at with your questions.

We encourage you to include any information that you think will help us make a more accurate assessment of your abilities. Feel free to include extra information, but you are not at all obliged to do so.

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.

Our IELTS Institution Name is “Johns Hopkins University, Whiting School of Engineering.” Country: “USA.”

Please note: The GRE is not required for PhD applicants. GRE scores will not be reviewed during the application review process.

This and other information concerning standardized testing can be found on the ETS GRE website.

Please note: The GRE is not required for PhD applicants. GRE scores will not be reviewed during the application review process.

Your scores must be new enough that ETS still considers them valid and can give us an official score report. Currently, the ETS sets this limit at five years.

Please note: The GRE is not required for PhD applicants. GRE scores will not be reviewed during the application review process.

Yes. The GRE is not required for PhD applicants.

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. Graduate Affairs and Graduate Admissions will grant waivers only to students with citizenship from countries where the official language or language of instruction in higher education is English, or if a student has received or is about to receive a bachelors or master’s degree from an institution in the US or a country where English is the official language.

Information for international students can be found here.

Information on English proficiency test waiver eligibility can be found here.


  • There are no minimal scores required for the GRE exam. Submitting a GRE score is optional for PhD applicants.
  • There are no minimal scores required for the TOEFL exam, but Johns Hopkins prefers a score of 600 (paper-based), 250 (computer-based), and 100 (internet-based) on the TOEFL.
  • There are no minimal scores required for the IELTS exam, but Johns Hopkins prefers an Academic Band Score equal to 7.

Copies or scans of any official documents such as GRE scores and TOEFL scores cannot be considered. Offers of admission will not be made using any unofficial documents.

You will be required to upload a copy of your transcript into our application system (unofficial is fine). When you are admitted to the program, you will need to provide an official copy before being enrolled.

A $75 fee is typically required alongside your application. However, we offer waivers in cases where the fee is a barrier to your application. 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 due to a financial burden, please contact us at

PhD applicants need three letters. We require that your recommenders submit their recommendations online.

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.

After Acceptance

You will be assigned an initial academic advisor who may or may not become your eventual thesis advisor. Students are required to complete research qualifying projects early in their studies with two different faculty members. For this reason, you’ll notice that our students often collaborate and publish with multiple faculty members. Additionally, many of our students are co-advised, and changing advisors or adding a second advisor is relatively easy. If you are a PhD student in computer science, you will be able to work with any CS faculty member, subject to mutual agreement.

All full-time CS PhD students in good academic standing are guaranteed full funding. This includes a yearly stipend of approximately $43,000, tuition, and health insurance. Our students are primarily funded on research assistantships, with some amount of time on teaching assistantships (teaching for at least one semester is a requirement of the CS PhD program).

Many of our students participate in summer internship programs within industry, which pay considerably higher salaries.

PhD students at Johns Hopkins are fully covered for medical (Wellfleet), dental (Delta Dental), and vision (EyeMed). Plans are available for master’s students as well.

All eligible full-time graduate students and postdoctoral trainees receive no fewer than eight weeks of fully-paid new child accommodations.

Additionally, JHU offers parents of young children child care vouchers.

For More Information

For answers to admissions questions that are not specific to the Department of Computer Science, please explore the Whiting School of Engineering Graduate Admissions website. Be sure to look at the official application instructions for domestic and international students on their How To Apply page.

If you have questions about the computer science program requirements, please note that the description in the Academic Catalogue is the official source. However, the answers in this FAQ are typically more current than answers found in the official documents. If the answers to your questions still cannot be found, please contact

Questions? Contact:

Kim Franklin

Academic Program Manager
Malone Hall 159

Meagan Wade

Sr. Academic Program Coordinator (Master’s and PhD Programs)
Malone Hall 160

Ready to apply?