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Graduate Admissions FAQs


What type of research is being conducted in Environmental and Ecological Engineering?

Please visit the following link to view the research being conducted by the Environmental and Ecological Engineering (EEE) faculty


What is the difference between Environmental and Ecological Engineering and Civil Engineering specialized in Environmental Engineering?

The Environmental and Ecological Engineering Program in Civil has 10 faculty associated with it, and these faculty generally work in traditional areas of environmental engineering, including water and wastewater treatment, environmental biotechnology and chemistry. Seven of these faculty have joint appointments in EEE, which has 9 additional faculty with joint appointments and 15 additional faculty who can advise students. EEE requires that you take 6 specific course credits and two semesters of a graduate seminar class, whereas CE has no specific course requirements, as it is up to the advisory committee to approve the plan of study. Students that are specifically interested in topics not covered in CE (Life cycle assessment, clean manufacturing, green materials, etc.) should apply to EEE, as this gives them access to faculty members who can be your major professor on such topics.


What is the cost of attending Purdue?

For information about the cost of enrollment please go to


How is funding decided and am I eligible?

All applicants, whether they are domestic or international, are eligible for funding. There is not a separate application process for funding. Once you submit a formal application, it will be reviewed by our graduate committee. If you satisfy the formal requirements for admission, the committee can recommend your admission. Within EEE the admission decision and funding decisions are separate. Not all students who are recommended for admission are offered funding. The faculty reviewers decide whether or not an applicant would be acceptable for funding and are responsible for making any offers. You may contact those faculty members that you are interested in working with to discuss funding options.


How can I check the status of my application?

There are two offices involved in the collection of application materials, the Graduate School and the EEE Graduate Office. You apply using the electronic application system through the Graduate School. The EEE Graduate Office then downloads this information into a tracking system. The Graduate School system updates as official materials are received. EEE will also send status updates when your application has moved forward in the process or if there is missing information. Additionally, you can send an inquiry to to check the status of your application.


Will my application be accepted if some materials arrive after the submission deadline?

We continue to accept application materials until Dec. 15 (for fall admission consideration) and until October 15 (for spring admission consideration), however, we cannot begin to review your file until all required materials have been received. Therefore, we will still consider your application if the materials come in late, but the review will be delayed. If the final submissions are received close to the final deadline, the review may not be completed in time for enrollment in the desired entry semester.


I submitted my GRE and/or English Proficiency Test Scores, however, my Applicant Check-list has not been updated.

It can take 2-3 weeks for electronic test scores to be reflected on the applicant check-list. The test score files must be verified and then matched to student files, which requires manual intervention. If the official scores have been sent, please be assured that your check-list will be updated as soon as possible.


What is Environmental and Ecological Engineering’s minimum score requirement for the TOEFL exam?

For unconditional admission consideration, applicants must meet one of the following requirements:

  • Minimum Paper-Based Test (PBT) Score Required: 575
  • Minimum Internet-Based Test (IBT) Overall Score Required: 90, with the following minimum section scores required:
    • Reading: 19
    • Listening: 14
    • Speaking: 18
    • Writing: 18
  • IELTS (Academic Module): An alternative to the TOEFL, scores of 6.5 or higher will be accepted
  • TWE for Non-Native English Speakers: Not required, but recommended.

If you do not meet the basic requirements described above, please do not submit an electronic application until you have contacted the EEE graduate program staff ( 


What is Environmental and Ecological Engineering's minimum GRE score requirement?

There is not a minimum GRE score requirement.  EEE’s evaluation considers a host of factors such as reference letters, past academic performance, program needs, statement of purpose, and TOEFL (international students).


I am an international student, do I need to submit a Diversity Essay?

The Diversity Essay is not required for admission consideration.


Do I need to send official hardcopy transcripts?

For the application review process, we do not need official hardcopy documents. We will review your application using the transcripts uploaded through the electronic application system (along with your resume and statement of purpose). You will only need to provide official hardcopy transcripts and/or academic records at our request. If you were unable to upload copies of your transcripts to the electronic application system, please email transcripts to


Should I mail in copies of my Statement of Purpose, Resume and/or Letters of Recommendation?

These materials should be submitted through the electronic application system. The EEE Graduate Office has never experienced trouble with downloading these materials, therefore there is no benefit to mailing in additional copies. If you have updates to your SOP or resume, you can send the updated version to and we will add it to your file.


Is it okay if my references would like to mail a paper copy of their letters instead of submitting them online?

The review process in EEE is completely electronic so we prefer to receive the letters through the electronic application system. However, if your references would like to mail in a paper copy, we will accept them. In this case, all of the letters must be in their own sealed envelope with a signature of the reference across the sealed fold.


Can I be admitted to a Ph.D. program with only a B.S.?

Exceptional students with baccalaureate degrees may be admitted directly to the Ph.D. program; however, for Baccalaureate degree students, it is more common to be admitted to the MSEEE degree program, and then continue on to doctoral studies after earning the MSEEE degree, and upon identifying a Major Professor who will supervise their dissertation research.


Can I gain admission to the Environmental and Ecological Program without an Engineering background?

We have had students admitted into our graduate program whose academic background was not in engineering (e.g., chemistry, physics, agronomy). Because of the multidisciplinary nature of the EEE degree program and the diversity of curricular topics and the associated research conducted by the faculty, no specific undergraduate preparation is required. However, basic deficiencies in math or science may be grounds for denial of admission or grounds for required completion of remedial coursework during the first year of study.


When do I send in a financial statement of support?

If you are accepted to Purdue University and you are an international applicant, there is information provided in your admission letter about the International Students and Scholars office. They handle all I-20 and visa issues. You will be provided links to the relevant forms to be filled out upon acceptance. No financial statements should be mailed to the EEE Grad Office.


Is it possible for me to send the Environmental and Ecological Engineering Graduate Programs office information about myself in hopes of knowing my chances of getting accepted?

To properly evaluate your academic and professional preparation for the EEE graduate program, all students are required to complete an official application .


What are some core courses that I will take?

Because students in the EEE graduate program have a wide variety of academic, research, and career interests, there is no specified course requirement, other than a mandatory six credit hours of “EEE Principles” credits and two semesters of a graduate-level seminar course. Every EEE graduate student is required to earn six credits of coursework in “EEE Principles”, and that these courses be included in the Plan of Study (POS). These courses are one credit, five-week modules that introduce all EEE graduate students to the diversity and interdisciplinary nature of environmental and ecological engineering topics, exposing students to a broad base of fundamental principles, allowing students to explore and expand their knowledge base beyond their primary interest area. All other courses on the POS are based on the needs of the student to acquire specific knowledge based on their academic research (i.e., knowledge necessary to conduct thesis research) and/or interests and career goals, with the Advisory Committee having final approval authority regarding which courses are suitable (or not suitable) for inclusion on the POS.


What is the expected duration of the MS program?

To earn a master's degree, 30 credit hours are required. Most graduate students enroll in 9 to 12 credit hours a semester, therefore the average time to complete a master's degree is three to four semesters.


When do I need to confirm my enrollment?

EEE asks all admitted students to confirm they will enroll for the fall term by July 1. It is possible to confirm enrollment later than that, but early notification helps EEE project class enrollment and more efficiently allocate instructional resources.