We accept students with undergraduate degrees in any field of engineering. We also accept a limited number of students with undergraduate degrees in science, such as biology or biochemistry.

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University of Notre Dame Graduate School Application

All applicants to the PhD program must complete the online application. Your Statement of Intent, CV, and Summary of Research Experience should be submitted in the Uploads section of the application. Mailed paper documents are not accepted. 

In the Planned Course of Study section, choose Bioengineering with any of the choices of home department. Your application will be reviewed by all bioengineering faculty regardless of your choice of home department.  If you are not accepted for the Bioengineering Ph.D. program, in general the selected home department will consider you for admission to their own Ph.D. program. The best matches of research interest to home department are:

  • Tissue engineering including Organ/Tissue on a chip technologies: Aerospace and mechanical engineering
  • Mechanobiology: Aerospace and mechanical engineering
  • Diagnostics: Chemical and biomolecular engineering
  • Imaging: Electrical engineering
  • Drug development/delivery: Chemical and biomolecular engineering

You may apply simultaneously to another Ph.D. program such as Biophysics. Enter the name of the relevant PhD program as the Other Intended Area of Study. Only one additional program will be considered. 

The Graduate School’s online application may only be submitted once. However, you do not have to complete the entire online application in one sitting. You may access your application and change your responses as many times as you like with your PIN and password from any computer with internet access. Once you have completed the online application to your satisfaction, click the Submit button at the top of the application. This will take you through the steps to pay the application fee and submit your application electronically to the Office of Graduate Admissions. Remember: submit your online application once.

After you submit your application, you will not be able to go back and make changes or additions to your application using the online application system. However, you will be able to view your online application to check which materials have been received.

Resume or CV

The CV should concisely list educational background, honors, positions held, research experience, and any scientific publications and/or presentations. Submit your CV as a PDF document to ensure formatting is retained. 

Statement of Intent

The Statement of Intent should describe your reasons for wishing to pursue a Ph.D., and why you think Notre Dame is the right fit for you. It should also give a brief overview of your overall career goals and describe the types of research in which you are interested. You are not required to identify specific faculty mentors or research groups you would like to work in within your personal statement, but you are welcome to do so. This will not limit the groups that consider your application. Submit your statement as a PDF document to ensure formatting is retained. Limit the document to no more than two pages.

Summary of Research Experience

The Summary of Research Experience should be submitted in lieu of the Writing Sample. You should describe any research projects you have worked on, emphasizing your contributions, describe what was learned, and how data were interpreted. Figures, diagrams, and other forms of data may be included if you wish. Submit your summary as a PDF document to ensure formatting is retained. Limit the document to no more than three pages. You may append any published or accepted journal articles or conference abstracts you have co-authored to your document. These will not count towards the three page limit.


Unofficial copies of all your university-level transcripts should be uploaded to your online application in the Academic History section. (Please include a certified English translation, if necessary.) If your undergraduate degree is currently in progress, upload transcripts for all coursework completed.  If an undergraduate transcript does not show proof of degree and date earned, a diploma confirming the degree should also be uploaded. Unofficial copies will suffice for admissions decisions, although the University will require official transcripts from all accepted students. 

TOEFL or other tests of English language proficiency

All applicants who are not native speakers of English must take a test to demonstrate proficiency in written and spoken English. There are several options for the test and exceptions for students who have conducted their studies in English. The graduate school has a page with complete information for international applicants.

Letters of Recommendation

At least three letters of recommendation are required. Strong letters are crucial for favorable admissions decisions. Letters should be from professors, employers, or colleagues who can describe in detail your qualifications, experience, motivation, and ability to succeed in graduate training. Your recommenders should submit their letters to the Graduate School electronically through the online application system.  Please enter the full name, email address and complete contact information for each provider. Once the recommendation provider information is saved, an email will be sent to the recommender with instructions on how to submit their letter. When the recommender submits the form to the Graduate School, it will become a part of your application. You can view the status of your online recommendations each time you log into your application account.

GRE Scores

Scores from the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) are optional. In general, the GRE exam will strengthen your application if you completed your degree from a school where the highest degree is the B.S., or if your degree is not in engineering. The institution code for the University of Notre Dame is 1841. A department code is not necessary. 

Only the GRE General Test will be considered. GRE Subject Tests will not be considered as part of your application.