Graduate Admissions

The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Rice University offers a variety of specialization areas ranging from hydrology and air quality to structures and bridge engineering, sustainable environmental engineering and more, which can lead to the following graduate degrees:

How to Apply

Once you have reviewed and met all admissions requirements, you are ready to Begin Your Application to Rice University.

Applications must be submitted online, and are transmitted through a secured server and are kept confidential until you decide to submit your application. There is an application fee of $85 and can be paid by credit card or checking account.

Visit our Frequently Asked Questions about our Graduate Admissions for any answers you may need about requirements and more.

Application Deadlines

Fall Semester

  • Application Opens: September 1
  • Application Deadline: January 15

Spring Semester

  • Application Opens: September 1
  • Application Deadline: October 15

Supporting Documents

In order to be considered, applicants must submit the following documents:

  • Official Transcripts are required from your undergraduate studies (and graduate, if applicable).

    • For reviewing purposes, electronic copies of transcript(s) from each college or university you have attended can be uploaded through the online application system to meet the application requirements.

    • If you are offered admission to Rice, a 30-day deadline is given (from the date of the offer letter) to provide an official transcript.

      • If the current degree has not yet been conferred, Rice requires a final transcript showing conferral of the degree before registration of the second semester at Rice. Transcript(s) can either be sent directly to the Rice Civil and Environmental Engineering Department from the institution or sealed by the institution in a signed envelope and delivered by the applicant.

  • Letters of Recommendation (LOR) are required from at least three former professors, advisors, and/or employers, who are familiar with your work and can attest to your potential for success in graduate school and beyond. All recommendation letters should be on university or employer letterhead.

  • The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is strongly recommended—but not required. A strong GRE score may compensate for weaknesses—if any—in other credentials submitted along with the application. Please submit your GRE score, if you took the test. Scores must not be older than five years, and an official copy must be sent to Rice University directly from the Educational Testing Service (ETS). Use Institutional code 6609 and 1102 for Civil Engineering and 1103 for Environmental Engineering.  

  • TOEFL OR IELTS or DUOLINGO are required for applicants who are foreign nationals or whose native language is not English. The scores must NOT be older than two years. The minimum score is 90 on TOEFL Internet-based, 250 on computer-based, and 600 on the paper-based test. The IELTS is acceptable in place of the TOEFL; the minimum score is 7. Use Institutional code 6609. Duolingo: Applicants to Rice must earn at least a 115 on the Duolingo English Test. *Please allow two weeks for all scores to be reported to Rice.*

  • For more detailed information about English Proficiency Requirements, please visit the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies website.

Financial Aid & Assistantships

  • There is no separate application for graduate research assistantship consideration. Generally, financial support is awarded to applicants who exceed the rigorous admission criteria and who seek to pursue Ph.D. as their highest degree.
  • Applicants seeking the MS or MCEE as their highest degree, if offered admission, are usually offered admission only.
  • Note: If you will self-support your studies at Rice, full financial details will be required as stipulated by the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies, and for international students, as stipulated by GPS and the Office of International Students and Scholars before an I-20 can be issued.

Application Status

Applicants can check their application status through their individual status page. 

Need Help?

For general application inquiries or other questions, contact:

Olga Trejo


Admissions Policies & Procedures

Rice University policies and processes regarding admissions requirements may be found in the General Announcements.

Have questions or need guidance about applying or your degree plan? We're here for you.