Undergraduate Admissions

Admission to The Grainger College of Engineering is the first step toward doing the impossible and becoming an engineer innovator. Our top-ranked undergraduate majors challenge your imagination, helping you to find your place and passion. Here, you will join a community of brilliant students and faculty that will support you in achieving your goals.

Undergraduate Application Process

At Grainger Engineering, you apply directly to your engineering major of interest. This enables immediate interaction with faculty and peers in the department, builds community, and assists your involvement in research and extracurriculars related specifically to your academic goals.

All engineering applications are submitted through the University of Illinois Office of Undergraduate Admissions. First-year applicants can apply to UIUC in one of three different ways: through myIllini, Coalition, or the Common App. We don't give preference based on application type. Transfer applicants apply to UIUC through myIllini.

Begin Undergraduate Application

If you have already applied, your application status can be accessed at any time through our admissions portal.

Check Application Status

If you have been admitted to Grainger Engineering, you can accept your offer, manage your admitted student checklist, and complete your enrollment requirements.

Accept Admissions Offer


  1. Select a program of study that best fits your skills, interests, and goals.
  2. Review and gather all application requirements to prepare for each stage of the application process.
  3. Complete the online application through the Office of Undergraduate Admissions.
  4. The University sends out communication via email. Applicants are encouraged to carefully read all emails sent from the Department and University to ensure no additional forms are needed after submission of the online application.

Which major is right for you?

Take our majors quiz to discover which of our 15 top-ranked programs match best with your interests.

Explore Majors & Minors

Request Information

Illustration of various engineering and machinery

What We Look for in an Applicant

The Grainger College of Engineering is home to some of the most innovative problem solvers and creative thinkers in engineering. Accordingly, we review all applications holistically, taking a wide variety of factors into consideration during the admission process to ensure all admitted students are best fit for success in the Grainger community. 

The Office of Admissions reviews the following as part of the first-year student application process. For more information about how we review transfer applicants, please visit the campus admissions site.

High School Courses & GPA

When planning what courses to take in high school for entry into engineering, it’s important to have strong academic rigor. We encourage you to take the most advanced courses available to you that will allow you to earn grades that reflect your academic ability, especially in math and science.

If your school offers a pre-engineering or AP track, we will look to see if you followed it. If you did take AP/IB/A Level exams, you may be able to enter Illinois with some college credit. We also look to see that you have consistently performed well in these courses through senior year, final semester.

Test Scores (ACT or SAT)

There is no minimum required standardized test score (ACT/SAT) required for admission to Grainger Engineering. However, the admissions team does seek out stronger score performances, especially in math.

First year students applying for admission to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign starting fall 2021 and beyond will have the option to submit SAT or ACT test results with your application.  For more information visit Admission FAQs about test-optional.

If you choose not to report SAT or ACT scores, a TOEFL or IELTS may be required. If you are including these scores, you should report your highest TOEFL (do not use MyBest score) or IELTS score and highest sub-scores, regardless of test date. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have extended our testing options to also accept the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition and IETLS Indicator.

High School Class Rank

Admission into a Grainger College of Engineering undergraduate program is most selective. Therefore, it is imperative to see that you have excelled throughout high school and acted as an academic leader in your class. If your school tracks high school percentile rank, it will be reviewed with your application.

Extracurricular Involvement

Extracurricular activities, work, volunteer experience, and achievement outside the classroom demonstrate personal strengths and skills that could contribute to the Grainger Engineering community. We look for students who are going to continue that involvement once on campus and participate in the wealth of activities found at Illinois.

Awards and Notable Accomplishments

We will take note if you have demonstrated a significant impact or level of accomplishment in your school, community, state, and/or national activities.

Admitted Freshman Profile (Middle 50%)

ACT: 32-35
SAT (no writing): 1440-1540
GPA: 3.75-4.00
TOEFL: 106-113

Application Essay

The Admissions team seeks students who will take advantage of Grainger Engineering’s cutting-edge resources and add their unique talents to our tight-knit community. Accordingly, we place great importance on the essay portion of the application. Your esay should provide us with more information about:

  • Why you're interested in the major to which you applied
  • Your passion through chosen activities, work experience, research, or course selection in high school
  • The challenges you have faced and overcome
  • How you've matured and grown through past experiences or evidence of character development, cultural insight, community awareness, and/or leadership
  • What sets you apart from other applicants
  • Your strength of writing

Most of all, we look for a genuine passion in the pursuit of an engineering career and how you will do the impossible at Grainger Engineering.

Tips on Writing a Great Essay

Do your research about Grainger Engineering. Write about how your interests and/or relevant activities match the curriculum that you want to study. This can mean looking into our majors and classes and sharing how you look to benefit from them.

If you select a second-choice major, be sure to make use of the second essay, which describes your interest in this major too. We are excited about your interest in attending Grainger Engineering. Writing the second essay allows you the opportunity to tell us more about you, what difference you hope to make as an engineer, and what your overall career goals are. When you do not write the second essay, it tells us that you are not interested in any other major. This limits our ability to offer majors/opportunities that we feel can best help you reach the same or similar academic goals.

Campus Admissions Guidance on Writing Prompts

Essay Questions for Transfer Applicants

Undergraduate Tuition and Financial Aid

At the University of Illinois, we understand that an undergraduate degree from The Grainger College of Engineering is a significant investment in achieving your goals. We work to ensure all students are supported as they navigate the process of financing their degree, and we will work with you and your family to understand Grainger Engineering’s tuition and fees, as well as financial aid and scholarship opportunities.

Learn More About Tuition & Financial Aid


Planning a Campus Visit

Visiting Grainger Engineering is the best way to see how you fit into our vibrant community. You will learn more about our state-of-the-art labs and research centers, as well as our residence halls and student life spaces. We offer a range of visit types, tailoring them directly to your application status and individual interests. This allows you to envision your future at The Grainger College of Engineering. Learn more and schedule your visit today.

Schedule a Visit


Contact the Grainger Engineering Admissions Team

The Grainger Engineering Admissions Team is ready to help you navigate every step of the admissions process. Do not hesitate to contact our team with any questions; our contact information can be found below.

First-Year Students
Email: engineering@illinois.edu
Call: 217-333-2280
Fax: 217-333-0015

Transfer Students
Email:  engineeringtransfers@illinois.edu

Your future starts here.

Applying to The Grainger College of Engineering opens the door to your future as a successful engineer. Get started by scheduling a visit, requesting information, or submitting your application.