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.


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  • We encourage all interested students to apply as early as possible to receive an earlier decision and have ample time for visa processing.

    Graduate admissions requirements include:

    • Official university transcripts
    • Curriculum Vitae (CV)
    • Statement of purpose
    • Three letters of recommendation
    • Official TOEFL or IELTS Academic score, or Duolingo English Test
    • 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 requires a minimum TOEFL score of 79 on the IBT (Internet Based Test) or 6.0 on the IELTS (International English Language Testing System). For Fall 2020, KAUST is also considering a score of 100 on the Duolingo Exam as clearing the English proficiency requirement. Those presenting a Duolingo score may be required to test upon arrival to campus. The KAUST admissions code is 4107. Only official TOEFL or IELTS, or Duolingo scores will be accepted. TOEFL or IELTS scores for tests administered by an educational institution for admission to that particular institution are not acceptable.

    A TOEFL or IELTS score, or Duolingo 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.

    KAUST does not require the GRE exam for admission. However, we strongly encourage students to take the GRE general test. A high quantitative score on the GRE will enhance a student's application. Official test results should be sent directly from ETS. The KAUST admissions code is 4139. The average GRE quantitative score for admitted students is currently 774 out of 800.


    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.