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Admission Requirements

Admission to the graduate programs in the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering is based on a careful evaluation of an applicant's potential to successfully complete the degree programs.

Penn State's Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering offers a Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degree in both Agricultural and Biological Engineering and BioRenewable Systems.

Requirements for entrance, as listed here, are in addition to the general Graduate School requirements for admission.

GREs

All students must submit scores from the General Aptitude Test of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) prior to admission. There is no minimum GRE score required for admission, as this is only one of several qualifications considered in the admission review process. However, financial assistance is often influenced by GRE scores and grade point averages (GPAs).

TOEFL

International students must obtain a TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)or the IELTS (International English Language Testing System). The minimum acceptable score for the TOEFL is 550 for the paper-based test, 213 for the computer-based test, or a total score of 80 with a 19 on the speaking section for the internet-based test. The minimum composite score for the IELTS is 6.5. The TOEFL exam must be taken within three years of the application date.

Entrance to Master of Science Programs

BioRenewable Systems (BRS) – An undergraduate degree in an engineering program is not a requirement for our BRS Graduate Program.

Agricultural and Biological Engineering (ABENG) - Completion of an undergraduate degree in an engineering program is required for direct admission into our ABENG Graduate Program. Students need at least a 2.50 (4.00 base) junior-senior grade point average to be considered for admission.

A student with an undergraduate degree in a non-engineering field can be admitted to the ABENG M.S. program on a provisional basis, which continues until completing the engineering undergraduate requirements in mathematics, physics, engineering sciences (thermodynamics, statics, dynamics, strength of materials, fluid-mechanics and electrical circuitry), and six credits of 400-level Agricultural and Biological Engineering courses. Upon completion of these preparatory courses with a minimum grade point average of 2.75, the student will be granted full admission to the graduate program.

Entrance to Doctor of Philosophy Programs

BioRenewable Systems (BRS) – An undergraduate degree in an engineering program is not a requirement for our BRS Graduate Program.

Agricultural and Biological Engineering (ABENG) - The departmental requirement for acceptance to graduate study toward a Ph.D. degree in ABENG is an M.S. degree with research thesis in an engineering or science discipline with a B.S. degree from an engineering program. Outstanding students interested in direct admission from a B.S. engineering program to the ABENG Ph.D. Program should contact the Graduate Program Coordinator. Direct admission will be based on critical evaluation of the student’s potential to conduct publishable research, academic record, results of standardized tests, statement of purpose, and reference letters. Students who apply directly to the ABENG Ph.D. Program but are not qualified will be considered for admission into the ABENG M.S. Program or the BRS Graduate Program.

A student with an undergraduate degree in a non-engineering field can be admitted to the ABENG Ph.D. program on a provisional basis, which continues until completing the engineering undergraduate requirements in mathematics, physics, engineering sciences (thermodynamics, statics, dynamics, strength of materials, fluid mechanics and electrical circuitry), and six credits of 400-level Agricultural and Biological Engineering courses.

Admission into the ABENG and BRS Graduate Programs are based upon a thorough review of all applicant qualifications, and the best-qualified applicants will be accepted up to the number of students for which Department resources are available. The number of students entering our program varies from semester to semester.

To apply for admission into the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering and BioRenewable Systems Gradaute Programs, go to "How to Apply."