Doctoral (PhD) How To Apply: PhD Programs

How to Apply: Doctoral (PhD) Programs

Students who have completed or are in the process of completing a four-year Bachelor's degree or equivalent in engineering, math or hard science may be eligible to apply for a Doctoral (PhD) program at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering.

Register for an upcoming webinar to learn more about the doctoral program at USC Viterbi

Doctoral Program Application Deadline

Fall 2025December 15
11:59 PM (23:59), Pacific Time

Doctoral Program Application Material Requirements

  • Bachelor's degree of equivalent in engineering, math or hard science
  • Official Academic Transcripts
  • Personal Statement
  • Resume/ CV
  • 3 Letters of Recommendation
  • Demonstrated Research Ability & Experience
  • GRE Required: Astronautical Engineering (ASTE), Industrial & Systems Engineering (ISE)
  • GRE Not Required: All Viterbi School PhD programs except ASTE and ISE
  • English Proficiency scores (International Applicants only)*

*If you earned a previous degree from the University of Southern California, you do not need to take the TOEFL or IELTS.

Doctoral Program Application Steps

Step 1

Start the Application for Graduate Admission ($90 application fee)

Step 2

TRANSCRIPTS: Upload Electronic Transcripts from all colleges and universities attended. A mailed hard copy or official e-transcript is not required for admission to our programs. These instructions apply only to applicants to the master's and Ph.D. programs of the Viterbi School of Engineering

    • Submit an electronic copy of official transcripts (.pdf recommended) and other degree related documents through the online graduate application (International applicants, visit USC Graduate Admission’s Country Requirements page for details on required documents)
    • Unofficial transcripts from university student portals are not acceptable
    • If the transcript includes a separate grading scale, make sure it is also uploaded
    • For upload purposes, all transcript-related documents for a single school must be submitted as one document
  • If you are admitted, you will be given specific instructions on submitting your hard copy transcripts
Step 3

Submit the following materials through the online application system:

  • LETTERS OF RECOMMENDATION (3 required) from faculty members with direct knowledge of your research abilities. Recommenders included in the online application will be contacted by email. Your application may be submitted before letters of recommendation are received. The recommender module is separate.

International Students should also submit the following:


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Published on July 18th, 2017

Last updated on April 25th, 2024