Carnegie mellon university  pittsburgh  pennsylvania   united states
US News Ranking

Brief Background:

A private research university, the history of Carnegie Mellon University dates back to 1900- when the Carnegie Technical Schools was founded. Later, in 1967, Carnegie Technical Schools was merged with the Mellon Institute.

Carnegie Mellon University ranking is among the top 50 universities in the world. However, CMU ranking, as per the QS World University Rankings, is 28th in the World University Rankings 2021. The university is also featured among the top 10 universities worldwide for computer science and statistics & operational research.

With a current student enrolment of 13,650 students from 114 countries, CMU has seven academic divisions. Its Engineering College, called The Carnegie Institute of Technology, offers 10 interdisciplinary majors that students can choose from. The Engineering school offers its students course-based and research-based Master’s degrees as well as Ph.D. programs.


The 140-acre campus CMU campus is located three miles from downtown Pittsburgh and offers students a beautiful and green campus. CMU students have access to a number of excellent libraries that are located on the campus. All the libraries are stocked with the latest volumes of tens of thousands of books. The campus also has facilities for all kinds of sports and recreation activities.

Acceptance Rate

Carnegie Mellon University acceptance rate was 17.1% in 2019. Competition for admission in this university is very high and it has elite admission standards.

Residing Options:

CMU students can apply for off-campus accommodation as CMU does not allow graduate students to live on campus. Some popular off-campus accommodation locations are Shadyside, Oakland, Beeler Street, and Squirrel Hill. Students pursuing a Master’s degree in Software Engineering can live in the Silicon Valley campus.

Faculty and pedagogy:

A large percentage of CMU teachers are highly reputed stalwarts in their fields. Making the most of the 30 research centers on the CMU campus, many of the CMU faculty and students are actively engaged in research projects.

The Carnegie Institute of Technology has 280 full-time faculties on their rolls.

Financial aid:

Since CMU is a private University, there are few scholarships on offer. Only the extremely good and deserving students get considered even for these few scholarships.

Jobs and Placements:

In the case of MS (Master of Science) graduates, the salary range is $63,251 - $125,564. Girls salary range is $49,702 - $107,397 and boys earn about $63,762 - $131,161. Girls earn $78K on an average compared to approximately $99K for boys, and the average salary for CMU graduates is $94K. In the STEM field, the highest median pay is of Senior Software Engineers (around $130K). Mechanical Engineers represent the lowest-paid position among alumni in the median pay (around $77K). MBA is the highest paying degree with an average annual salary of $126K. Students found jobs after graduating from Carnegie Mellon University extremely satisfying and rated 4 stars out of 5 on Payscale.

The top recruiters employing graduates from this university include Inc; Carnegie Mellon University (CMU); International Business Machines (IBM) Corp.; Google, Inc.; Intel Corporation. The most popular job profiles amongst the alumni of the university are Software Engineer; Senior Software; Engineer; Data Scientist; Mechanical Engineer; UX Designer; Software Developer; User Experience Designer.


Famous CMU alumni include Kushagra Bajaj- Vice-Chairman of Bajaj Group, Pradeep Sindhu- Co-founder of Juniper Networks, and Vinod Khosla- Co-founder of Sun Microsystems amongst many others.


Being a private University, it is a bit expensive. However, CMU is one of the top-5 institutes in the US and hence, is one of the first choices for students applying to the U.S.


The campus is located in one of the oldest neighborhoods in Pittsburgh. The pay-as-you-park is located within a minute's walking distance to the center of campus. The parking spaces are few. Metered parking facilities are also available outside the campus.
Traveling by air? Pittsburgh Airport is connected by 14 airlines and offers nonstop service to 68 U.S. cities. From the campus, it takes almost 45 minutes to reach the airport. The Port Authority of Allegheny County runs bus routes throughout the city and surrounding areas.  On the weekends, you may visit tourist attractions around the campus like Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, Mount Washington, PNC Park, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, and many others.
Housing services support, engage, and inspire students. Through the round-the-clock community of support, staff and residents build relationships that inspire growth and learning.

Advice From Senior

Journey to CMU | Admission, Financing, SOP & College Reputation vs Location

Acceptance Rate for Indians 47%
STEM Masters Awarded to International Students 714
STEM Doctorates Awarded to International Students 71
TA Appointments 119
RA appointments 678
Research funding $103,096,525
Source : GyanDhan's analysis & partner data as of year 2018

Biotechnology – Biomedical Engineering

The department harbours 52 faculty members and 35 adjunct faculty members who are engaged in creating cutting-edge engineering solutions for medicine and healthcare.
The MS program offers a broad range of courses for students. Students may choose between the traditional Research-Option M.S. program and the accelerated Practicum-Option M.S. program.
The Research Option requires advanced knowledge in biomedical engineering along with independent research skills. You will need to submit a comprehensive report describing your independent research on the subject.
The Practicum option provides opportunities for clinical exposure at local hospitals. It may also be combined with programs in Engineering & Technology Innovation Management or Technology Ventures to form a dual M.S. program.
You must have a bachelor’s degree in any engineering field or disciplines like computer science, biological science, physics, chemistry, mathematics, or applied mathematics. You also must provide transcripts from all universities attended, the GRE general test scores, three letters of recommendation, and the Statement of Purpose. Submitting TOEFL scores is compulsory for all non-native English-speaking students. The minimal acceptable TOEFL total score is 88 with subscores of 22 or higher for reading, listening, speaking, and writing. The minimal acceptable IELTS band score is 7.5.

Areas of Expertise: Nano, micro, and polymer technologies at the interface between biological and artificial materials; Biomedical Imaging and signal processing; Cardiovascular and Cellular Biomechanics; Medical devices and robotics

List of Labs: Center for Implantable Medical Microsystems
Chemical Engineering

The Department of Chemical Engineering is committed to achieving excellence in the field of Chemical Engineering and focuses its research on six major areas. There are 21 faculty members and several adjunct professors. The entire faculty is engaged in research and teaching. 
The Master's programs focus on engineering problems, fluid mechanics, and transport and process simulation. The Masters of Science (MS) in Chemical Engineering involves both coursework and project work designed to be completed in four semesters. Students have to prepare a final report of the project work to develop written communication skills. The Masters of Chemical Engineering (MChE) is designed to be completed in two academic semesters. The program produces skilled engineers with an understanding of the fundamentals of chemical engineering and exposure to other technical disciplines.
The MS in Colloids, Polymers, and Surfaces (CPS) is relevant to many industries as chemical product manufacturing and process development often require applications which involve complex fluids like nanoparticles, macromolecules, and interfaces.
To apply for the masters level programs, you must complete a regular four-year degree in chemical engineering or a related discipline at a recognized university with a better than B average. Applicants are accepted and enrolled in both fall and spring sessions. All applications are submitted online. Additionally, applicants need to submit three letters of recommendation. You also need to submit a Statement of Purpose, your resume/CV, the official GRE score report, and the TOEFL/IELTS score (if you are an international applicant and your native language is not English).

Areas of Expertise: Biochemical Engineering & Biotechnology; Catalysis and Surface Science; Complex Fluids Engineering; Envirochemical Engineering; Energy Science and Engineering; Process Systems Engineering

List of Labs: Center for Advanced Process Decision Making; Center for Complex Fluids Engineering; NETL - Regional University Alliance 

School of Computer Science

The Carnegie Mellon School of Computer Science is recognized globally for its curriculum in computer science and robotics education. The department offers three masters options for students apart from a bachelor’s degree.
For the M.S. in Computer Science, you do not necessarily need a bachelor’s degree in computer science, but the department prefers a background in the subject. Most students complete the program in three semesters, but if you are switching from another field, you may need an additional semester to fill gaps in your undergraduate training.
The Fifth Year Master's Program is specifically for students receiving a B.S. or double major in Computer Science at the University. The program lasts for 12 months, including one standard academic year and one summer. Students can also start the program in a fall or spring semester, however, they can start the Fifth Year Master's program only after they have received their B.S. in computer science at CMU.
There is a common online application form available for admission to the Doctoral and any masters programs. The GRE scores are also needed.  If your native language is not English, then you must submit TOEFL scores.

Areas of Expertise: Robotics; Language Technologies Institute; Human-Computer Interaction Institute; Machine Learning Department; Institute of Software Research; Computer Science; Lane Center for Computational Biology

List of Labs: CyLab Biometrics Lab; Robotics Institute; Lane Center for Computational Cancer Research; CyLab Usable Privacy and Security Laboratory; Institute for Software Research

Electrical and Computer Engineering

The Integrated Master’s/Bachelor’s program offered by the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering allows students to achieve both Bachelor's and Master’s degrees without needing to apply separately. Students with a 3.00 QPA (Quality Point Average) or above in the second semester of their junior year are eligible for this program. There is no need to apply separately or clear the GRE.
The M.S. students have the option to specialize in one of these areas: a) Cyber-Physical Systems, b) Computer Security, c)  Data and Network Science, d) Wireless Systems.
You can also opt for dual-degree offerings with M.S. in Engineering and Technology Innovation Management (ETIM) and M.S. in Technology Ventures.
The application can be submitted online. You also need to provide a statement of purpose, resume, three recommendation letters, transcripts, GRE score report, and application fee. International applicants are also required to submit a TOEFL or IELTS score report.

Areas of Expertise: Computer Engineering; Electric power and energy systems; Control Systems; Solar Energy and Photovoltaics; Electromagnetics, antennas and microwave circuits; Signal Processing and Communications; Solid-state Electronics; Electronic and mixed-signal circuit design

List of Labs: Connection One

Environmental – Civil and Environmental Engineering

The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering provides students access to cutting-edge research and technology and high achieving faculty members. The MS degree program is a full-time program to be completed across three full-time semesters. It allows students to discuss with their academic advisors and tailor their graduate program and identify the appropriate coursework.
Research is organized into three major focus areas: Advanced Infrastructure Systems; Environmental Engineering, Sustainability, and Science; and Mechanics, Materials, and Computing.
AIS (Advanced Infrastructure Systems) focuses on the exploration and application of emerging ICT to improve the design, construction, and operations of infrastructure systems.
The EESS (Environmental Engineering, Sustainability, and Science) focuses on air quality, water quality, remediation, industrial ecology, sustainable engineering, energy and environment, and environmental nanotechnology.
The MMC (Mechanics Materials and Computing) focuses on the scientific understanding and practical application of the emergent complex behavior of materials through computer simulation techniques.
Applicants must apply online after answering the required questions. Once you have submitted, you can upload required documents, edit recommendation requests, and enter new test scores.
Areas of Expertise: Mechanics, Materials, and Computing; Environmental Engineering, Sustainability, & Science; Advanced Infrastructure Systems

List of Labs: Center for Atmospheric Particle Studies; Center for Climate and Energy Decision Making; Center for Enhanced Resilience and Climate Adaptation; Steinbrenner Institute; Western PA Brownfield Center; Mobility Data Analytics Center; Green Design Institute; Center for Environmental Implication of Nanotechnology; Center for Water Quality in Urban Environmental Systems

Information Technology

The master's degree programs provide a specialized curriculum combining electrical and computer engineering, software engineering, computer science, and information systems. Highly qualified undergraduate students are eligible for the fifth year in a customized undergraduate curriculum leading to the Master of Science in Information Networking (MSIN) or Master of Science in Information Security (MSIS).
For these programs, you need to have an undergraduate degree in computer science, computer engineering, or an associated technical field with a GPA of 3.0 or higher (on a 4-point scale). You need to submit GRE General Test that is less than five years old or the TOEFL/IELTS, for applicants whose native language/mother tongue is not English.
For the integrated programs, you need to approach the university two semesters before you finish your undergraduate course. There are specific requirements that you need to comply with.
Students in the bicoastal mobility and information security programs divide their studies between Carnegie Mellon's Pittsburgh and Silicon Valley campuses. The students spend the first two semesters of the program in Pittsburgh and complete their studies in Silicon Valley.
In association with the University of Hyogo in Kobe, Japan, a two-year, dual-degree programme is offered: the Kobe Master of Science in Information Technology-Information Security (MSIT-IS) Dual Degree.
Areas of Expertise: Software Management; Mobility;Information Security; Cyber Forensics; Information Assurance; Information Networking; Cyber Operations; Information Technology

Materials Science

The Department of Materials Science and Engineering has a long and distinguished tradition in materials education and research. The department maintains a range of central facilities available to all. The graduate study in MSE develops the fundamental scientific and engineering principles that govern the behaviour and application of materials.
The M.S. in Materials Science and Engineering degree can be done within two semesters. The M.S. in Materials Science degree requires equal numbers of research and coursework units and can be completed in two years (three or four semesters). One can also opt for the following programmes: a) Master of Science in Additive Manufacturing (MSAM) which provides experience in designing and building parts using Additive Manufacturing, b) Masters in Energy Science and Technology and Policy (ESTP) for those interested in a technological background exposure to different areas of Energy issues.
Prospective students must be graduates of Materials Science and Engineering or a related discipline with better than a "B" average. Applications need to be sent online along with three letters of recommendation, unofficial transcripts, essay questions, your CV/Resume, the GRE test scores and TOEFL test scores for non-native English speakers.

Areas of Expertise: Microstructural Science; Soft Materials and Nanomaterials; Computational Materials Science; Magnetic Materials; Electronic & Optical Materials; Iron and Steelmaking; Materials and Energy

List of Labs: Center for Iron and Steelmaking Research

Mechanical Engineering

The M.S. in Mechanical Engineering - Advanced Study program offered by the Mechanical Engineering Department can be self-supported or supported through an outside funding source. The courses that a student can choose from are: Design and Manufacturing of Mechanical Systems; Energy and Thermal Fluid Systems; Robotic and Control Systems. Under the M.S. in Mechanical Engineering program, students choose from fundamental as well as specialized courses along with in-class project experiences. One can opt to conduct a small amount of research. Students are encouraged to take advantage of the many co-curricular engineering and design experiences. The M.S. in Mechanical Engineering – Research option allows students to perform extensive research with a faculty member. They submit a final research report and presentation to faculty and students at the department. The program provides hands-on learning and problem-solving through project-based courses.
Admission to the department requires a good academic background with a minimum undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.0 at the time of admission. Applicants should provide unofficial transcripts while seeking admission. Official copies of final transcripts are required upon admission. Applicants should additionally provide three letters of recommendation, official GRE scores from ETS and official TOEFL or IELTS scores for non-native speakers of English.

Areas of Expertise: Robotics and Controls; Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS) and Nanotechnology; Computational Design Tools & Design Theory & Methodology Practice; Solid Mechanics, Vibrations and Acoustics; Biomedical Technologies; Energy and the Environment

List of labs: Center for the Mechanics and Engineering of Cellular Systems; Center for Product Strategy and Innovation

Engineering & Technology Innovation Management

The department of Engineering & Technology Innovation Management offers the following programs- a) a one-year, full-time, professional MS which is the standard degree offered by the E&TIM program, b) The Silicon Valley full-time MS program which is a “bicoastal” option allowing students to attend courses at Carnegie Mellon University's main campus for the initial Spring semester. Summer internships are provided at any approved location, and the Fall semester is spent at CMU’s Silicon Valley campus, c) a two-year, part-time E&TIM option which is available for students local to Pittsburgh, d) E&TIM students may apply for dual degrees with traditional engineering programs at Carnegie Mellon University. Such a program requires four semesters for completion, e) four-semester MS with an Integrated Study in Computer Science for engineers with a background in programming and computation.
To apply, students need to provide official transcript(s) from all previously attended universities, financial letter of support, resume, responses to the essay questions, three letters of recommendation, GRE score report, and the TOEFL or IELTS score reports.
Areas of Expertise: Energy & Environmental Systems; Technology Innovation; Technology Policy & Mgmt including tech. & economic develop; Risk Analysis & Communication; Global Change; Information and Communication Technology Policy; Engineering, Technology Innovation Management

Pure Science

The Ph.D. programme in Chemistry offered by the Department of Chemistry provides a strong foundation for research. The students can take at least one course outside of their research area.
Candidates for the doctoral programme in Physics should have at least four years, or an equivalent of full-time graduate study, including a minimum of one year of full-time work at Carnegie Mellon. Students who are finishing B.S./ B.A./ M.S. degrees in Physics or a closely related subject will be considered for admission to the doctoral programme offered by the Physics Department.
The mathematics doctoral programs offered by the Department of Mathematical Sciences are organized around the research areas of the department: applied analysis, combinatorics, logic, and mathematical finance. 
You need to apply online along with the Statement of Purpose, three letters of reference, transcripts of your earlier education, GRE test results and the TOEFL score. A CV is optional for the mathematics department.

List of Labs: Wilton E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation 

Annual fees for Indians $43,000
Annual off-campus living $6,000
Source : GyanDhan's analysis & university's website as of year 2018

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Discussion on Carnegie Mellon University
Okay thanks. Listing some questions: How wise is the decision of choosing location over university reputation for masters in US? In CMU (or anywhere else) have you come across any students from non-tech backgrounds (i.e. Bioinfo) studying in CS related fields? If yes, how difficult would you cons... ... Read more

Virtual Networking Event for MS in US Fall Admits 2021
...t-3 Date- Sunday, 21st March 2021 Time- 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM Northeastern University New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) University of Maryland Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) New York University (NYU) [Stern/Tandon] Event-4 Date- Sunday, 21st March 2021 Time- 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM University at Buffalo SUNY Adelphi University... ... Read more

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