Applications for 2024 are closed

At KAUST, our students and faculty come from every corner of the globe, bringing a multicultural perspective to the challenges of the scientific community. Admission to KAUST is rigorous and thorough, allowing us to cultivate a cohort of future global leaders.

Graduate admissions requirements include:

  • Official university transcripts
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV)
  • Statement of purpose
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Official TOEFL or IELTS Academic score
  • Official GRE scores (GRE submission is encouraged and will enhance an application, but it is not compulsory)

School Reports & Transcripts

You must submit an official complete university Transcript/ Mark sheets/ Graduation Certificate/ Academic Record from every institution previously attended. A scan of the official transcript provided by the university in the native language must be uploaded into the online application along with the certified English translation. Your transcript must include the university grading scale for all documents submitted. If offered admission, an official final transcript must be sent to the Office of Admissions prior to arrival (during the onboarding process) in a sealed envelope.

Statement of Purpose

750 words (approximately) concerning your past work, preparation for the intended field of study, relevant background and interests, academic plans, and career objectives. Please describe your reasons for applying to the particular KAUST program for which you are seeking admission.

Letters of Recommendation

You must have three letters of recommendation submitted on your behalf. Letters of recommendation are important and should be written by professors or advisors under whom you have pursued research or taken courses in your major field of study. Recommendation letters should be submitted through the application directly from the recommender. Recommenders should provide details about how he/she knows your work, as well as comparative statements (e.g., top 1% of class, best in past five years, etc.), and insight into your research ability.

KAUST accepts the following English proficiency examinations:

● International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
   6.5 with at least 5.5 in all individual sections

● TOEFL iBT (Internet-based Test)
   79 overall, with at least 17 in all individual sections, the KAUST Admissions code is 4107

● Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic
   62 overall, with at least 59 in all individual sections

● C1 Advanced, formerly known as Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE)
   176 overall, with at least 169 in all individual sections

Only official academic results will be accepted. Tests administered by an educational institution for admissions to that particular institution are not acceptable.

Students who are admitted with an English language score that meets KAUST’s minimum requirements listed above but is below an IELTS 7.0 or TOEFL 90 will be additionally required to take an Advanced English Language Communication Course (AELC) for one semester in the first year of their academic program while at KAUST.

An English score is not required if the applicant received a degree from an accredited institution in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, or New Zealand.

GRE (Graduate Record Examination)

KAUST does not require the GRE exam for admission, however, you are welcome to submit your scores if you have taken the exam. Official test results can be sent directly to KAUST Admissions using the GRE Code 4139.


A summary of your job experience, research experience, and any other relevant information should also be submitted with your application. If you have publications, please include abstracts of these in your resume.

KAUST Admission Process

Admission Review

Your Application must be complete for it to be reviewed by the Admissions Office. If your file is missing documents, you will be asked to submit them before it can be reviewed.

Faculty Review Committee

If your application passes Admissions review, it will be evaluated by the faculty review committee of each program.

Academic Interview

If selected, you will be invited for an academic interview with KAUST Faculty.

KAUST Interview

This is a personal interview, either via Skype video chat and/or in person.

Join the KAUST Community

Admission to a graduate program at KAUST presents a rare opportunity to conduct research in a community of global proportions with full funding. If you’re considering earning your master’s or Ph.D. abroad, start your application today.