Your Application Process:

Evaluation Process: Find out what happens to your application once it is submitted.

After you Apply: Find out about interviews, fellowship offers and more.

Your BE Contact:

Ms. Kathleen Venit
BE Graduate Coordinator
240 Skirkanich Hall
P) 215-746-8604

Available for Download:

The BE PhD Student Handbook BE Master's Student Handbook
(140 KB PDF)

Applying to the Bioengineering PhD Program

This program is designed to train students for careers in academia, government, or industry where research is fundamental. The curriculum prepares students for the field's rapidly-changing character by developing the intellectual capacities necessary for research excellence.

How to Apply

All applications for the PhD program must be completed online. Visit the application page to create a login and account to begin the application process. You will receive a PIN and Password so that you can return to work on your application over several sessions before submission and check the status of your application at any time. Your confidential information is transmitted through a secure server. For a list of the required items, please visit the Penn Engineering graduate admissions page.

When To Apply

Applications must be submitted by December 15 for admission the following year. For full consideration for fellowships and other awards, all materials must be received by this date.

Prerequisite Requirements

Academic prerequisite requirements for the degree are an undergraduate degree in an engineering subject or an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution with a physical science, natural science or math major.

Standardized Test Requirements

The GRE: The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test is required for admission to both the master’s and PhD graduate programs in bioengineering. Reporting code for the GRE is 2888.               

Average GRE test scores of admitted students reported in 2013 were 600 (verbal), 777 (quantitative) and 4.7 (analytical writing). For those submitting scores based on the new GRE scale, the average scores were: 162 (verbal),166 (quantitative) 4.7 (analytical writing). The average GPA is 3.8 on a 4.0 scale.

The TOEFL: If your native language is not English, you must complete the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) test with a score above 600 written test) or 250 (computer-based test) or 100 (internet-based test). You must submit a TOEFL score unless you have spent three years attending a college or university in the United States of America. The reporting code for the TOEFL is:

  • SEAS institution code: #2888

This requirement can be waived is the candidate has completed at least three (3) years of academic work on a full-time basis at a university-level institution in the United States or in a country in which english is recognized as the official language or where the medium of instruction is English.

You will find additional information on these tests from the Educational Testing Service (ETS). Test score reporting should be completed only through ETS, as only official scores received from ETS will be considered.

Fellowships and Support

The Department encourages all students to apply for graduate training fellowships during their graduate studies. Students who apply for and receive fellowships prior to matriculating to Penn gain tremendous flexibility in choosing a lab for research. Fellowships are available from several sources and can allow students to focus on a specific cross-disciplinary area, such as the NIBIB-HHMI Interfaces Program at Penn, geared toward Ph.D. training in Biomedical Imaging Sciences. More information on fellowships and support can be found here.