Admission to the Graduate School


Admission Requirements

The Graduate School of Colorado School of Mines is open to graduates from four-year programs at recognized colleges or universities. Admission to all graduate programs is competitive, based on an evaluation of prior academic performance, test scores and references. The academic background of each applicant is evaluated according to the requirements of each department outlined later in this section of the Catalog.

To be a candidate for a graduate degree, students must have completed an appropriate undergraduate degree program. Colorado School of Mines undergraduate students in the Combined Degree Program may, however, work toward completion of graduate degree requirements prior to completing undergraduate degree requirements. See the Combined Undergraduate/Graduate Degree section of the Graduate Catalog for details of this program.

Categories of Admission

There are four categories of admission to graduate studies at Colorado School of Mines: regular, provisional, graduate non-degree, and foreign exchange.

Regular Degree Students

Applicants who meet all the necessary qualifications as determined by the program to which they have applied are admitted as regular graduate students.

Provisional Degree Students

Applicants who are not qualified to enter the regular degree program directly may be admitted as provisional degree students for a trial period not longer than 12 months. During this period students must demonstrate their ability to work for an advanced degree as specified by the admitting degree program. After the first semester, the student may request that the department review his or her progress and make a decision concerning full degree status. With department approval, the credits earned under the provisional status can be applied towards the advanced degree.

Non-degree Students

Practicing professionals may wish to update their professional knowledge or broaden their areas of competence without committing themselves to a degree program. They may enroll for regular courses as non-degree students. Inquiries and applications should be made to:

Mines Graduate Office
Golden, CO 80401-0028
Phone: 303-273-3247

A person admitted as a nondegree student who subsequently decides to pursue a regular degree program must apply and gain admission to the Graduate School. All graduate-level credits earned as a non-degree student may be transferred into the regular degree program if the student's graduate committee and department head approve. Transfer credits must not have been used as credit toward a Bachelor's degree.

Foreign Exchange Students

Graduate level students living outside of the U.S. may wish to take courses at Colorado School of Mines as exchange students. They may enroll for regular courses as foreign exchange students. Inquiries and applications should be made to:

Mines Office of International Programs
Golden, CO 80401-0028
Phone: 303-384-2121

A person admitted as a foreign exchange student who subsequently decides to pursue a regular degree program must apply and gain admission to the Graduate School. All graduate-level credits earned as a foreign exchange student and not used toward a bachelor's degree may be transferred into the regular degree program if the student's graduate committee and department head approve.

Combined Undergraduate/Graduate Programs

Several degree programs offer Mines undergraduate students the opportunity to begin work on a Graduate Degree while completing the requirements of their Bachelor Degree. These programs can give students a head start on graduate education. An overview of these combined programs and description of the admission process and requirements are found in the Graduate Degrees and Requirements section of this Catalog.

Admission into a Combined Undergraduate/Graduate degree program is available only to current Mines undergraduate students. Mines alumni are not eligible for Combined degree program enrollment.

Admission Procedure

Applying for Admission

Both US resident and international students may apply electronically for admission. Our Web address is:

To apply follow the procedure outlined below.

  1. Application: Go to the online application form at Students wishing to apply for graduate school should submit completed applications by the following dates:
    for Fall admission*
    December 15 - Priority consideration for financial support
    March 1 - International student deadline
    July 1 - Domestic student deadline
    for Spring Admission*
    October 1 Students wishing to submit applications beyond the final deadline should contact the Graduate Office.
  2. Transcripts: The Graduate Office recommends uploading electronic copies of transcripts (in .pdf format) within the online application system from each school previously attended. Electronic copies of transcripts can also be sent, via email, to International students' transcripts must be in English or have an official English translation attached. Transcripts are not considered official unless they are sent directly by the institution attended and are complete, with no courses in progress.
  3. Letters of Recommendation: Three (3) letters of recommendation are required. Individuals who know your personal qualities and scholastic or professional abilities can use the online application system to submit letters of recommendation on your behalf. Letters can also be mailed directly to the Graduate Office.
  4. Graduate Record Examination (GRE): Most departments require the General test of the Graduate Record Examination for applicants seeking admission to their programs. Refer to the section Graduate Degree Programs and Courses by Department or the Graduate School application packet to find out if you must take the GRE examination. For information about the test, write to:
    Graduate Record Examinations
    Educational Testing Service
    PO Box 6000
    Princeton, NJ 08541- 6000
    (Telephone 609-771-7670)
    or visit online at
  5. English Language Requirements: Applicants whose native language is not English must prove proficiency. Language examination results must be sent to the Graduate School as part of the admission process. The institution has minimum English proficiency requirements - learn more at:
    English proficiency may be proven by achieving one of the following:
    1. A TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) minimum score of 550 on the paper-based test or a score of 79 on the internet Based TOEFL (iBT).
    2. At IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Score of 6.5, with no band below a 6.0.
    3. A PTE A (Pearson test of English) score of 70 or higher.
    4. Independent evaluation and approval by the admission-granting department.
  6. Additional instructions for admission to graduate school specific to individual departments are contained in the application for admission.

Financial Assistance

To apply for Mines financial assistance, check the box in the Financial Information section of the online graduate application or complete the Financial Assistance section on the paper application.

Application Review Process

When application materials are received by the Graduate School, they are processed and sent to the desired degree program for review. The review is conducted according to the process developed and approved by the faculty of that degree program. The degree program transmits its decision to the Dean of the Graduate School, who then notifies the applicant. The decision of the degree program is final and may not be appealed.

Health Record and Additional Steps

When students first enroll at Mines, they must complete the student health record form which is sent to them when they are accepted for enrollment. Students must submit the student health record, including health history, medical examination, and record of immunization, in order to complete registration.

Questions can be addressed to:
The Coulter Student Health Center
1225 17th Street
Golden, CO 80401-1869

The Health Center telephone numbers are 303-273-3381 and 303-279-3155.


Colorado School of Mines is approved by the Colorado State Approving Agency for Veteran Benefits under chapters 30, 31, 32, 33, 35, 1606, and 1607. Undergraduate students must register for and maintain 12.0 credit hours, and graduate students must register for and maintain 9.0 credit hours of graduate work in any semester to be certified as a full-time student for full-time benefits. Any hours taken under the full-time category will decrease the benefits to 3/4 time, 1/2 time, or tuition payment only.

All changes in hours, program, addresses, marital status, or dependents are to be reported to the Veterans Certifying Officer as soon as possible so that overpayment or underpayment may be avoided. Veterans must see the Veteran’s Certifying Officer each semester to be certified for any benefits for which they may be eligible. In order for veterans to continue to receive benefits, they must make satisfactory progress as defined by Colorado School of Mines.

An honorably or generally discharged military veteran providing a copy of his/her DD214 is awarded two credit hours to meet the physical education undergraduate degree requirement at Mines. Additionally, veterans may request substitution of a technical elective for the institution's core EPICS course requirement in all undergraduate degree programs.

For more information, please visit the Veterans Services webpage.