FAQ

Are there any online degree programs?

Yes. J.B. Speed School of Engineering offers several programs online, including master’s degrees and graduate certificates:

  • Master of Engineering in Engineering Management
  • Master of Science in Civil Engineering
  • Master of Science in Computer Science
  • Graduate Certificate in Data Science
  • Graduate Certificate in Cybersecurity
  • Graduate Certificate in Structural Engineering
  • Graduate Certificate in Transportation Engineering

What are the admission requirements for Speed graduate programs?

Admission requirements for Doctoral degree

Speed School looks at several criteria as part of the admission process.  Speed School considers GRE scores (and TOEFL/IELTS scores if applicable), letters of recommendation, undergraduate GPA and a personal goal statement (if applicable).

Required minimum GRE scores and required minimum undergraduate GPA for Doctoral admission.

Engineering DisciplineMinimum Combined Quantitative
and Verbal GRE
Minimum undergraduate GPA
using a 4.00 scale
Chemical Engineering3023.00
Civil Engineering2952.75
Computer Science and Engineering2953.00
Electrical Engineering2953.50
Industrial Engineering3053.00
Mechanical Engineering3023.00

 

Applicants for whom English is a second language must demonstrate sufficient proficiency in the English language.  English proficiency can be demonstrated by submitting TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) scores of at least 80 on the internet-based test, at least 213 on the computer-based test, or at least 550 on the paper-based test.

Students can also demonstrate English proficiency by submitting at least a 6.5 overall band score on the IELTS (International English Language Testing System) exam.

Students must submit at least two (2) letters of recommendations from individuals familiar with the applicant’s academic ability.  Letters can be submitted using the form found at: https://graduate.louisville.edu/apply/grad-rec.pdf

Admission requirements for Master of Science degree

Speed School looks at several criteria as part of the admission process.  Speed School considers GRE scores (and TOEFL/IELTS scores if applicable), letters of recommendation, undergraduate GPA and a personal goal statement (if applicable).

Required minimum GRE scores and required minimum undergraduate GPA for Master of Science degree program admission.

Engineering DisciplineMinimum Combined Quantitative
and Verbal GRE
Minimum undergraduate GPA
using a 4.00 scale
Chemical Engineering3023.00
Civil Engineering2952.75
Computer Science and Engineering2952.75
Electrical Engineering2953.00
Industrial Engineering3002.75
Mechanical Engineering3022.75

Applicants for whom English is a second language must demonstrate sufficient proficiency in the English language.  English proficiency can be demonstrated by submitting TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) scores of at least 80 on the internet-based test, at least 213 on the computer-based test, or at least 550 on the paper-based test.

Students can also demonstrate English proficiency by submitting at least a 6.5 overall band score on the IELTS (International English Language Testing System) exam.

Students must submit at least two (2) letters of recommendations from individuals familiar with the applicant’s academic ability.  Letters can be submitted using the form found at:
https://graduate.louisville.edu/apply/grad-rec.pdf

Admission requirements for certificate programs

Applicants for admission into one of Speed School’s certificate programs must have completed at least an undergraduate degree with a GPA of at least 2.75 on a 4.00 scale and applicants must be admitted to the university’s School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies (graduate school).

All applicants for graduate programs must submit a nonrefundable application fee.  Students applying for readmission or submitting an additional application for admission (ex: an admitted student applying for admission into a certificate program) are required to submit a nonrefundable application fee.

Is there a graduate certificate program in Environmental Engineering?
There is a graduate Environmental Engineering certificate program.  However, the certificate can only be awarded with the concurrent completion of a graduate degree (MEng, MS, PhD).

Where do I find the application?
The admission application and instructions for completing the application can be found at: https://graduate.louisville.edu/apply

Is the GRE required?
All applicants for a graduate degree program must submit current GRE scores (no older than three years).  Students who complete the GRE, but have yet to receive their official scores can be admitted provisionally provided they have their student copy of their test scores for evaluation.  Students admitted provisionally due to missing GRE scores must make arrangements to have their official scores received by the University before the end of their first semester of graduate studies.  Students who fail to have their official scores received by the University before the end of their first semester of graduate studies will be unable to register beyond their first semester and may be dropped from their graduate degree program.

Can I be admitted if I do not meet the minimum admission requirements?
Students whose academic credentials do not meet the minimum admission requirements may be considered for conditional admission on an individual basis.  Students whose official credentials have not been received by the graduate school admissions office may be admitted provisionally.  If admitted conditionally or provisionally students must satisfy the condition/provision by the time designated in their admission letter.  Students who fail to satisfy the condition/provision may be terminated from their graduate program.

Students whose TOEFL or IELTS scores are slightly below the minimum would be required to complete either the IELS (Intensive English Language Program) or the Communications in English program offered by the University of Louisville.  

Applicants who do not have their two letters of recommendation on file at the graduate school may be admitted provisionally.  Students admitted provisionally due to missing letters of recommendation must make arrangements to have their letters received by the University before the end of their first semester of graduate studies.  Students who fail to have their letters received by the University before the end of their first semester of graduate studies will be unable to register beyond their first semester and may be dropped for their graduate degree program.

The Computer Science and Engineering department, Electrical Engineering department and the Chemical Engineering department require the personal goal statement or a statement of purpose.  Applicants who do not have their personal goal statement or statement of purpose on file at the graduate school may be admitted provisionally.  Students admitted provisionally due to a missing personal goal statement or statement of purpose must submit the missing credential to the University graduate school before the end of their first semester of graduate studies.  Students who fail to have their personal goal statement or statement of purpose submitted to the University graduate school before the end of their first semester of graduate studies will be unable to register beyond their first semester and may be dropped for their graduate degree program.  

Applicants who submit unofficial transcripts may be considered for provisional admission.  Students admitted provisionally due to unofficial transcripts or must make arrangements to have all the institutions (even those where the applicants did not complete a degree program) send official final transcripts to the graduate school admissions office.  All official final transcripts must be received before the end of the applicants first semester of graduate studies.  For those institutions where the applicant received a degree, the final official transcript must show the earned degree.  Applicants must submit transcripts from all institutions attended, even those where the applicant may have taken only one or a few courses.  Students who fail to have their final official transcripts submitted to the University graduate school before the end of their first semester of graduate studies will be unable to register beyond their first semester and may be dropped for their graduate degree program.

Applicants who submit unofficial GRE scores may be considered for provisional admission.  Students admitted provisionally due to unofficial GRE scores must make arrangements to have their official GRE scores sent to the graduate school admissions office.  Official GRE scores must be received before the end of the applicants first semester of graduate studies.  Students who fail to have their official GRE scores submitted to the University graduate school before the end of their first semester of graduate studies will be unable to register beyond their first semester and may be dropped for their graduate degree program. 

Is there an application deadline?
It takes considerable time to review an applicant’s admission credentials.  For international applicants, the time required to have their credentials submitted may take longer than domestic applicants.  Therefore, all applicants should begin the admission process as soon as possible.  Priority deadlines are as follows:
Fall semester – May 1st.
Spring semester – November 1st
Summer semester – March 1st

Can I transfer hours from another institution to my PhD program or the Master of Science degree program?
A student entering the Ph.D. program who already has a master’s degree may have some of the credit hours for that degree counted towards the hours required for the Doctoral degree.  Course work taken more than three years prior to the student’s application to a graduate program will not normally be considered for transfer.  The course work being considered for transfer must have been taken while the student was enrolled in an accredited graduate or professional school and must be evaluated for transfer by the department’s director of the graduate program.


For a student entering the Master of Science degree program the number of semester hours transferable, upon request, is six.
Hours earned toward a culminating experience such as a thesis, practicum, or internship are not transferable. Only courses in which the student earned grades of “B” or better will be considered for transfer.

What financial aid resources are available?

Financial assistance opportunities are limited and therefore are very competitive.  Speed School offers the Grosscurth Fellowship for new doctoral students as well as teaching assistantships (TA) and research assistantships (RA).  The University graduate school also offers several financial aid programs.  For information about financial opportunities offered by the University graduate school, visit: https://graduate.louisville.edu/sigs/financial-support.html

Minimum qualifications for a Speed School Grosscurth Fellowship are a combined quantitative and verbal GRE score of at least 305, an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale), two letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with your ability to be successful in graduate studies, and copies of transcripts from all institutions attended.  Each individual department makes decisions regarding TA and RA positions.  

The university graduate school offers University Fellowships, as well as tuition awards, doctoral dissertation awards, and diversity fellowships.  Applicants cannot self-nominate for University Fellowships.  Candidates for University Fellowships must have quantitative, verbal and analytical writing GRE scores at the 60th percentile or better (Quantitative - 152; Verbal – 153; Analytical Writing – 4).  Their undergraduate GPA must be at least 3.25 on a 4.00 scale.  They should also present strong letters of recommendation and other evidence of scholarly ability such as research papers, presentations, etc.  A University Fellowship is a one-year award renewable for one additional year.  The fellowship provides a stipend, tuition, and health insurance.

Do I have to take the TOEFL or the IESL exam if I have a degree from an international institution that teaches in English?
Applicants from institutions where the language of instruction is English are evaluated on a case-by-case basis to determine whether additional proof of English proficiency is required.

Where can find more information about an engineering department?

Each department has a web page and a director of graduate studies.  The web pages can be found by visiting: http://louisville.edu/speed/academics/departments or https://graduate.louisville.edu/sigs/degree-programs.html

Departments have directors of graduate studies who can assist graduate students throughout the time the students pursue their graduate degree.  The directors are:

Dept.ContactPhoneEmail
Chemical EngineeringDr. Eric Berson502-852-1567Email Dr. Berson
Civil EngineeringDr. Zhihui Sun502-852-4583Email Dr. Sun
Computer EngineeringDr. Mehmed Kantardzic502-852-3703Email Dr. Kantardzic
Electrical EngineeringDr. John Naber502-852-7910Email Dr. Naber
Industrial EngineeringDr. Lihui Bai502-852-1416Email Dr. Bai
Mechanical EngineeringDr. Peter Quesada502-852-5981Email Dr. Quesada
Engineering ManagementDr. Liz Gentry502-852-1697Email Dr. Gentry

Is an English translation of my academic records required?

Yes.  If your academic credentials are in a language other than English, a certified translation is required.  While Speed School does not require an evaluation of academic credentials by World Educational Services (WES) or Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE) for international applicants, individual departments may request an evaluation.

How do I apply for my I-20 document?

The I-20 is a document that contains specific information about your admission status, tuition, stipend specifications, and the duration of time the university requests that the US Department of Immigration allow you to stay in the United States to complete your degree.  

Once you have been officially admitted to the University, the graduate school contacts the International Center.  The University International Center verifies that you have submitted documentation showing adequate resources to pursue your degree program.  The International Center processes the I-20 and sends the information to SEVIS (the Student and Exchange Visitor Program) which is part of the United States government’s Division of Homeland Security.  This process usually takes only a day or two.  Once the International Center receives confirmation back from SEVIS the I-20 is sent to the student.

The university’s International Center (IC) is an excellent resource for international students looking for assistance in understanding the process of being admitted to the university.  The IC can provide information regarding general admission and transcripts, assist in immigration issues, offer orientation sessions and workshops for international students and many other services.  To contact the International Center, visit http://louisville.edu/internationalcenter

Are financial statements required for international students?

Yes.  International students must provide financial information that demonstrates the student’s ability to cover the expenses to complete the degree program.  The University International Center can assist students in gathering the necessary documentation the financial resources needed to complete a degree.

What’s the cost of attending graduate school?

For Master of Science and Doctoral students tuition rates for 2014-2015 are as follows:

Per HourFull-time (9 hrs) per semester
In-state resident$630.00$5,663.00
Non-resident$1,311.00$11,784.00

Doctoral and Master’s candidacy is $1,260.00

For online programs, the rates are as follows:
Rate per Credit Hour: $693.00

There is no difference in online program tuition rates rates for residents and non-residents.  Online courses are charged separately and are in addition to any regular (non-online) courses a student may be taking.

There is also a fee associated with enrolling in courses.  The fee (bundled with tuition) is $202.00/semester for full-time students.

Visit the bursar's website for an up-to-date listing of tuition costs and fees.

Are offers of admission and stipends a guarantee for being granted a visa?
No.  The awarding of a visa is dependent on the following three items:

  1. The size of your stipend or proof of financial ability.
  2. Your ability to demonstrate the intent to return home after you complete your studies.
  3. Your academic records and/or proof of English proficiency.


You should be prepared to present strong evidence in these three items to increase your chances of obtaining a visa.  The university International Center can assist you in obtaining a visa. 

How do I register for classes once admitted?
Once admitted you will receive registration material and other information from the graduate school.  Registration is done via ULink, the university’s student self-service site.  The registration material you receive from graduate admissions will provide instructions on how to access ULink.  ULink provides links to graduate admissions, where you can view your admission status; the Bursar’s Office, where you can access your financial account; registration, where you can register for classes; and other services.     

Your department’s director of graduate studies will advise you on which courses to take.  Remember that if you were admitted with a condition that you take prerequisite courses, you must register for those courses before you register for any additional courses.  Your conditional admission requires that you successfully complete any prerequisite courses.  Students who fail to register for and successfully complete required prerequisite courses will be blocked from future enrollment and may be dismissed from their graduate program.

Once you meet with your graduate advisor you can register for your classes via ULink. 

How many credit hours can I take each semester?
Unless a program requires a larger number of credit hours for all full time students, the maximum number of credit hours that may be taken in a fall, spring is 12; or 15 if three or more of the credit hours are research hours.  The maximum number of credit hours allowed in the summer semester is 12, including research hours.

Full time study is defined as taking at nine credit hours during the fall and spring semesters and six hours in the summer.  Once in degree candidacy status, you are considered a full time student.  If you are a recipient of a fellowship or graduate assistant you must enroll full time during the period for which you are receiving financial support.

Once admitted how long do I have to complete my degree program?
Doctoral students must complete all degree requirements within four years after passing the qualifying exam.  Doctoral students must pass a qualifying exam, oral or written, or both.  To be eligible for the qualifying exam, you must have completed the major portion of the coursework.  As a doctoral student you must be admitted to candidacy at least nine months before finishing your degree.  

Master of Science students must complete their degree within six years of beginning their program.  Coursework older than six years, including transfer credits, will not count toward completing the degree.  

When you complete all course requirements, with the exception of completing your final project, thesis or dissertation, you enter candidacy.  While in candidacy, you typically do not take any additional classes because it is assumed you are working full-time on your research project.  

Once enrolled in candidacy, you will be required to register for either masters or doctoral candidacy every semester (fall, spring and summer) until the degree is completed.  

Is housing available?
Finding housing can be difficult.  In some cases, you must have a Social Security Number to rent an apartment.  You can apply for a Social Security Number 10 days after your arrival in the US and would receive it in approximately three weeks.  Some rental owners require that you sign a rental agreement in person.  Rental owners typically require either a security deposit or advance rental deposit or both.  The supply of apartments close to campus tends to fill up early, in some cases months before the start of classes.  

The University Housing Office runs a temporary housing service that may be able to assist you in finding housing.  The International Center is also a good resource for assistance in finding housing.  Visit http://louisville.edu/housing for the University Housing Office and http://louisville.edu/internationalcenter for the International Center.   

What research opportunities are available?
There are numerous opportunities for students to become involved in research.  The first contact would be your department advisor.  Your advisor will know of the research efforts currently being pursued in the department.  They will be able to provide you with the names of faculty members who are conducting research in your interest area.  For more information about Speed School research centers and laboratories, visit http://louisville.edu/speed/research/centers-and-labs

Is there someone who will assist me once I arrive on campus?
Before you leave your home country, contact the university International Center for information about arrival options in Louisville.  Once on campus the International Center and the graduate school offer orientation sessions for international students to assist in the transition to living and studying in the US.

Updated: 07.20.2017