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. Doctoral applicants should also have demonstrated research ability and experience.

Explore the options below to learn more about:

Doctoral Program Application Material Requirements

* A USC MS satisfies the PhD English language requirements. Anyone applying for a PhD with a USC MS does not need to take a TOEFL or IELTS

Doctoral Program Application Deadline

*11:59 PM (23:59), Eastern Time
Fall 2019 December 15*
Deadline to submit the Statement of IntentMay 1, 2019

NOTE: The application for USC Viterbi graduate programs for Fall 2019 will be available starting JULY 1, 2019

Doctoral Program Application Steps

Step 1

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

Step 2

Submit the following materials through the online application system:

  • Transcripts – upload scanned copies of official (university-issued) transcripts
  • 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 recommendations are received. The recommender module is separate.
  • Statement of Purpose outlining your academic and professional goals
  • Resume
Step 3

Submit hard copies of official Transcripts for all previous college and university coursework by mail. For faster processing, include your 10-digit USC ID with your transcripts.

By regular mail:
University of Southern California
USC Office of Graduate Admission
3601 South Flower Street, Room 112
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0915

By courier service, such as DHL or FedEx:
University of Southern California
USC Office of Graduate Admission and Financial Aid
3601 South Flower Street, Tyler 112
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0915
(213) 740-1111

By electronic transcripts:
USC also now accepts official electronic transcripts, provided they meet the following guidelines:

  • The transcript originates from a secure site formally linked to the sending institution.
  • The school is located in the United States. We do not accept electronic transcripts from any institution overseas.

Please instruct the vendor to email the transcript to Do not send any materials or correspondence to this email address yourself. To avoid delays, do not provide vendor with any other email.

Step 4

Submit official GRE General Test scores directly from ETS. The USC ETS code is 4852 (no department code needed).

Step 5

International Students should also submit the following:

  • A Photocopy of the first two pages of your passport
  • A report of your scores on the TOEFL or IELTS sent by ETS to USC. Please review USC’s English Proficiency Criteria
  • Required official copies of materials from non-U.S. schools vary from country to country. Please see Admission Requirement by Country.