FAQ on PhD


  • Q: I have applied to the Ph.D. program at University X. How do I arrange for my GT transcripts to be sent to University X?
    Since you are in Shenzhen, you obviously will not be able to pick up your GT transcripts in person. However, transcripts can be conveniently ordered online. Follow the instructions on the Registrar’s Office Ordering Transcripts page. Once logged in, you will be able to type in the address where the transcripts should be mailed. The transcript fee includes first-class mail postage. Allow at least one week of time for mailing within the United States, and at least three weeks of time if the transcripts are to be mailed internationally.
  • Q: The following is required when applying to the graduate program at University X: “A Provisional Certificate from your Registrar must give the expected month/year of graduation, if you have not yet graduated and received your diploma.” How do I obtain the provisional certificate from the GT Registrar?
    A: Verification of pending degree can only be issued if you have already submitted your GT MS degree petition. Afterward, you will need to complete two forms. First, the “Change of Anticipated Graduation Date” on the form.  The expected date of graduation was automatically calculated at the time of acceptance – correct it if necessary to reflect your actual progress. Next, complete the Verification Request Form found on the Registrar’s website. Check “Degree Pending” under “Type of Verification”. For “Special Instructions”, indicate that you have already submitted your GT MS degree petition materials and give your expected graduation date. Write in the address of the university requesting the form. Click here for a sample completed degree pending verification request form. Once you have completed both forms, sign and date the forms, scan and email them to the Registrar’s office address printed on the form. You should send in both forms, and only after you have submitted your degree petition materials.
  • Q: When applying to the graduate program at University X, I am asked to provide an official “Statement of Rank in College or University Class.” How do I obtain that from the GT Registrar?
    A:  Complete the Verification Request Form found on the Registrar’s website. Check “Rank” under “Type of Verification”. Once you have completed, signed, and dated the form, scan and email it to the Registrar’s office address printed on the form. Click here for a sample completed rank verification request form. Your rank will be given as a number among the thousands of current GT MS students (irrespective of major), ranked according to your GPA.
  • Q: After I complete my GT MS ECE degree at GT-Shenzhen, I would like to pursue Ph.D. studies in a new discipline at GT-Atlanta. Do I have to re-apply?
    A: You will need to re-reply. However, since you are a current GT graduate student, you should not use the online application form for new students (the online application that you went through when you applied to GT for the first time). Each Ph.D. program will have its own application procedures and deadlines, so please inquire with the graduate program director for the discipline of your interest. Typically, a graduate program expects the following items: discipline-specific application form, an updated statement of purpose, letter(s) of recommendation, and resume. GT should already have on file (in the BANNER system) the following items so you will not need to submit again: (i) TOEFL and GRE scores; (ii) your final undergraduate transcripts and degree documents; (iii) your GT transcripts.
  • Q: After I complete my GT MS ECE degree at GT-Shenzhen, I would like to pursue the Ph.D. program in the College of Computing (CoC) at GT-Atlanta. What is the application procedure?
    A: The following items need to be completed and submitted by email to the College of Computing by December 15 of each year for matriculation in the following fall semester:
    – Application form for current students
    – Background essay (no more than 2 pages, on what you have done in the past)
    – Statement of purpose (no more than 2 pages, on what you plan to do in the future)
    – Resume
    Please submit the above items as one package. It is a good idea to indicate the degree program in the subject line. The application form needs to be signed, dated, and scanned.
    Additionally, 3 letters of recommendation should be emailed directly from the recommenders to the College of Computing by December 31. The recommendation letters to CoC programs should be addressed to:
    Graduate Admissions
    Georgia Tech College of Computing
    801 Atlantic Drive NW
    Atlanta, GA 30332-0280
  • Q: I would like to apply to several Ph.D. programs in CoC at GT-Atlanta to maximize my chances. Do I apply separately to each program?
    A: Yes, you will need to fill out a different application form for each CoC degree program (the program name will be different and the areas of interest will be different). Your statement of purpose will likely be different for a different degree program. The background essay and resume will be the same. Package these items in one email and submit to the College of Computing to distribute to the appropriate program committee. If you apply to multiple programs in CoC, please do not mix the different program applications in one email – send one email per application. The referees only need to send one set of recommendation letters.
  • Q: Does CoC admit Ph.D. students for Spring semester start?
    Generally no, except for the Computational Science and Engineering (CSE) program. CSE does accept Ph.D. applications for matriculation in the spring semester, with October 1 as the application deadline for receipt of all application materials including reference letters.
  • Q: Prof. X in the GT College of Computing (CoC) collaborates with Prof. Y in the GT School of ECE. Prof. X is willing to offer me a Graduate Research Assistantship (GRA) position. He appreciates my ECE background and does not mind if I remain an ECE Ph.D. student. Prof. Y has agreed to act as my ECE co-advisor. Is this a feasible arrangement?
    A: Yes. Under this arrangement, your home department is ECE and you will receive a Ph.D. degree from ECE. Prof. Y will need to check with Prof. X prior to the start of each semester to get the updated GRA support level and account number and pass that information onto his/her accountant. Prof. Y’s accountant will then do the paperwork to ensure that your tuition waiver and your stipend are set up correctly for the following semester. It is important that there is a clear understanding between Prof. X and Prof. Y regarding who is paying the GRA and for which semesters.