Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering
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Frequently Asked Questions

1. What can I do to prepare for applying to the University of Minnesota?
We encourage you to begin early and prepare all documents needed to support your application. Contact three of your professors regarding letters of recommendation. If you have been out of the academic scene for a while please use professional contacts for letters of recommendation. The GRE is not required for the AEM program, but if you have taken it we encourage you to list your scores on your application.  It is the University of Minnesota policy that non-native speakers of English must have an English Language Proficiency (ELP) rating in order to be considered eligible for a teaching assistantship.

2. How do I determine my ELP if I am a non-native speaker of English?
ELPs are determined by your score on one of the following assessments:

  1. Internet-based TOEFL (speaking subscore)
  2. SETTA (Spoken English Test for Teaching Assistants)
  3. Final exam taken after coursework in the International TA Program 
The AEM department requires all Graduate Teaching Assistants to have an ELP of 1 or 2.

3. Can I apply on the Web?
The University of Minnesota will only accept applications through the online application system.

4. Can I have my application evaluated without paying the fee?
No, the fee must be paid before an application will be processed and reviewed. 

5. What should I write in my personal statement?
The personal statement should describe succinctly your reasons for applying to the proposed program at the University of Minnesota, your preparation for this field of study, academic and research interests, future career plans, and other aspects of your background and interests.

6. What are my chances of being admitted to the Department of Aerospace Engineering & Mechanics?
Because of the large volume of applications and inquiries we receive during each admissions cycle, we cannot evaluate the potential success of each applicant. Admissions decisions can only be made by the admissions committee after an application is complete (including all supporting documents).

7. Does Aerospace Engineering & Mechanics admit applicants for the Spring semester?
We admit graduate students for FALL SEMESTER ONLY. Only under unusual circumstances will students be allowed to begin their studies at another time during the academic year.

8. What are the minimum requirements to be considered for admission to a graduate program in Aerospace Engineering & Mechanics?
We admit students based on the strength of the application pool, which is always highly competitive.

9. How do I apply for graduate studies in Aerospace Engineering & Mechanics?
Complete instructions are located here: Application Instructions

10. Can I apply to the Ph.D. program directly?
You may apply directly to the Ph.D. If you plan to pursue a Ph.D., we encourage you to apply directly to the Ph.D. program. In this case you will automatically be eligible for the M.S. degree. Applicants who already hold an M.S. degree from another institution should apply directly to the Ph.D. program.

11. Does Aerospace Engineering & Mechanics require the GRE?
The GRE is not required for the AEM program, but if you have taken it we encourage you to list your scores on your application. Your scores will be taken into consideration, but will not be a primary factor when consider your possibility of admittance.

12. Does the Department of Aerospace Engineering & Mechanics require that I calculate and list my grade-point average (GPA) on the application?
For applicants who received their undergraduate degree at a U.S. university or college, calculate the GPA using all course work. Applicants who received their undergraduate degree outside the U.S. should not convert their grades to the U.S. scale. We are familiar with grading scales from around the world and will evaluate your transcript based on your country’s grade scale. Please list your GPA on the application reflecting the grade base of your school.

13. What is the minimum GPA required to gain admittance into the program?
Typically we look for a GPA of 3.2 or higher, but it really depends on the applicant pool of that particular year.

14. How many letters of recommendation are required?
We require 3 letters of recommendation.

15. On the online application it asks for more than one statement do I need to complete all of them?
You only need to complete the personal statement.

16. I do not have my official GRE or TOEFL score sheet, how can I upload my scores to the application?
You should have ETS report your scores to the University of Minnesota, school code 6874. For the GRE, or if your TOEFL is likely to be delayed in reporting, you can upload your copy of the score sheet, or a screen shot of your scores that are available on line.

17. Do I need to report my official GRE or TOEFL scores?
You should have ETS report scores to the University of Minnesota, school code 6874. If your scores are likely to be delayed, you can upload a copy of your score sheet. If you are admitted you will need to supply official scores for the TOEFL, but not necessarily the GRE, as it is optional.

18. My Application status shows incomplete, but I submitted everything to the department?
The on line application status is through the Graduate School not the department. You will need to see contact the Graduate School Admissions Office regarding the status of your application.

19. What TOEFL score do I need to be considered for admission?
The minimum TOEFL score required by the University of Minnesota for graduate admission is 550 on the paper and pencil test, 213 on the computer based test and 79 on the Next Generation TOEFL (iBT).

Applicants with a score below these values will not be admitted. Applicants who have completed at least 24 quarter credits or 16 semester credits of academic, writing and reading-intensive coursework at a recognized institution of higher learning in the United States (or other English-speaking country) may request a waiver of the TOEFL requirement by emailing an unofficial copy of their transcripts to as soon as September 1, and no later than December 1.

The TOEFL score is due on December 15, along with the rest of the application. If this presents a scheduling problem for you, compile and submit all other materials and then contact to work out a plan to submit TOEFL scores.

20. Will I be notified when my application has been submitted or is complete?
The Graduate School Admissions Office will send you a confirmation email after your online application is submitted. Once the Graduate School Admissions Office forwards your application to our department you will receive an email if any materials are missing. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the application is submitted and all supporting documents are received by the Department of Aerospace Engineering & Mechanics by the appropriate deadline.

21. How do I apply for Financial Support?
Anyone who applies by the Dec. 15th deadline is automatically considered for financial assistance. All materials on the application page including recommendation letters must be on file by Dec. 15th to be considered.

22. When will I be notified whether I have been admitted?
We will start notifying applicants in mid-February and continue to do so until the admissions committee has made all of their decisions. All applicants are notified by e-mail. If your application is successful, the Graduate School will notify you that you have been recommended for admission.

23. Do I need to submit a financial certification form with my application?
If you are accepted, we will inform you of the information we need and send you the necessary forms. Do not send financial statements in advance.

24. How do I accept or decline your offer of admission?
Applicants receiving an offer of admission will also receive from the Graduate School Admissions Office a request to complete an Enrollment Form. Once the Enrollment Form is complete you will be eligible to register for classes. We appreciate notification via email as well.

25. If I apply to the PhD program and I'm denied, can I still be considered for the MS program?
No, once you are denied for one program, we will not consider you for another.

26. How can I upload or add documents to my application if I have already submitted it?
First, contact the department so we can grant you access to upload files. Then follow these instructions on how to upload or add documents after you have submitted your online application.

Last Modified: 2018-10-17 at 11:37:30 -- this is in International Standard Date and Time Notation