Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Troy, NY
student ratio
total students
$46,700 | $46,700
in-state | out-of-state tuition
Not Reported
fall application deadline
Not Reported
acceptance rate


Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute -- the Nation's First Technological University

Founded in 1824, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) was the first technological university in the United States.

From the design of the Ferris Wheel and the Brooklyn Bridge to the inventions of the digital camera and network email, Rensselaer's distinguished alumni have been instrumental in shaping the world around us. Today, Rensselaer is a top-tier technological research university with global reach and global impact that is consistently ranked among the nation's top 50 universities by "U.S. News and World Report."

Rensselaer is located in the heart of New York's Tech Valley, a region of the state known for its distinguished heritage of innovation, technology discovery and development. Global technology leaders, such as IBM, GE, Tokyo Electron, and SEMATECH have located facilities in the region. Small innovative firms, many of which were started by Rensselaer alumni, are also thriving in Tech Valley.

Research as a Driver to Change the World

Rensselaer was founded to apply science to the common purposes of life. Today, Rensselaer's motto, "Why not change the world," reflects the university's collective resolve to respond to the unprecedented challenges facing the world. Rensselaer has done so by becoming a leader in interdisciplinary research focused on five signature research thrusts:

energy, environment, and smart systems; biotechnology and life sciences; nanotechnology and advanced materials; computational science and engineering; and media, arts, science, and technology.

Over 35 Research Centers and Institutes at Rensselaer

Rensselaer is home to over 35 research centers and institutes focused on addressing global challenges.

Most recently, Rensselaer has announced a new university-wide initiative to tackle the challenges and opportunities of "Big Data." The new Rensselaer Institute for Data Exploration and Applications (IDEA) brings together and fortifies the wealth of data science, high performance computing, predictive analytics, data visualization, and cognitive computing research at the institute.

The Rensselaer IDEA represents an investment by Rensselaer of $60 million, and involves faculty members and students from more than 12 departments across the five schools of the university. The new research institute serves as a hub for Rensselaer faculty members, staff members, and students engaged in data-driven discovery and innovation. Through the use of the vast amounts of available data, they are addressing some of the most challenging problems facing the world -- from energy security and job creation to sustainability and health care.

The Computational Center for Nanotechnology Innovations (CCNI) was developed as a partnership between Rensselaer, IBM, and New York State to create one of the world's most powerful university-based supercomputers. CCNI research focuses on reducing the time and costs associated with designing and manufacturing nanoscale materials, systems, and devices, and the vast computing capability is one the reasons that medical schools and health-care organizations seek Rensselaer as a university partner.

The Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies (CBIS) is ranked among the most advanced research facilities in the world and serves as Rensselaer's primary research, training, and outreach center in biotechnology. The center is independent of departmental or school affiliation, thus facilitating multidisciplinary activity based on research strength and collaboration across the span of biotechnology studies. CBIS's research projects build upon existing core strengths in biocatalysis and bioprocessing, advanced materials and nanotechnology, microscale systems, and advanced scientific computation, modeling, and simulation.

The Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) is dedicated to using perception and experience to build bridges between the human senses and create meaning in a physical environment. Research covers a wide range of topics, from innovations in acoustic design, architectural daylight modeling, and overhead tracking systems, to adding a sense of touch to virtual environments and computational models of concert hall ceilings.

Successful Faculty Members Work within Collaborative Communities

Rensselaer is home to more than 450 top faculty members who work within collaborative communities in an atmosphere of increasing interdisciplinary activity, designed to reduce or eliminate the "walls" between disciplines.

In addition to faculty members collaborating across schools and disciplines, Rensselaer faculty members actively collaborate on a global scale. Rensselaer has established more than 140 research partnerships with major universities, medical institutions, corporations, and foundations. Among Rensselaer's most recent collaborations are a partnership with Instituto Superior Técnico of Portugal, which will allow for collaborative work on research, student exchange, andjoint master's and doctoral theses; and a partnership with the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, which will accelerate the pace of discovery and innovation in biomedical sciences.

In addition to performing their research, Rensselaer's faculty members devote much thought and time to designing more dynamic teaching methods, redesigning curricula, and transforming classrooms into interactive learning environments where students learn by doing.

Graduate Studies at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Research provides the intellectual grounding and training for the next generation of scholars and technological leaders. This requires a vibrant graduate student body and a strong research-based resident graduate program that attracts the most talented students.

Rensselaer offers interactive, challenging, and highly relevant graduate programs that combine hands-on education in state-of-the-art facilities with comprehensive and interdisciplinary academic theory. Coursework is designed to broaden students' perspectives and experiences while teaching students how to search for new connections and initiate change in every area of society.

Rensselaer graduate students will become part of a prestigious community of scholars. The graduates have shaped the technological, cultural, and societal platforms of the world. Rensselaer is seeking individuals who have the vision and desire to change the world. The university offers 100+ graduate programs in more than 50 disciplines and attracts significant support from government, industry, and private donors, allowing Rensselaer students to have a truly world-class education.

30 Doctoral Degree Programs

Rensselaer offers 30 doctoral degree programs from the institute's five academic schools. Each program is patterned around Rensselaer's unique academic approach and strength in interdisciplinary research. More than 90% of the doctoral students at the institute receive full funding and tuition remission. Alumni earning doctoral degrees typically go on to successful careers in academia, government, and industry. Among the leading employers of graduates are IBM, GE, Boeing, Cisco, and Oracle, to name a few.

38 Master's Programs Including Architecture and Management

The 38 Master of Science (M.S.) programs at Rensselaer are designed to match current industry, business, and professional needs, while providing students with skills to lead innovation and gain competitive advantages in their fields.

For example, students in our School of Architecture can take advantage of our academic-industry partnership with the architectural firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) in nearby New York City -- the Center for Architecture Science and Ecology (CASE) -- as part of the M.S. in Architectural Science program. This dynamic partnership provides student researchers with opportunities to address the increasing demands for effective building performance, both perceptually and technically, while working alongside top practitioners in the field of architecture.

As a leader in business education for the past 50 years, Rensselaer's Lally School of Management graduate programs develop savvy business leaders who drive innovation for commercial success in the rapidly changing global marketplace. Companies value the education that Rensselaer students receive, particularly in business analytics, financial engineering, and supply chain management. Recent employers of Lally School graduates include Bank of America, Cisco Systems, Ernst & Young, ExxonMobil, General Electric, LexisNexis, Johnson & Johnson, Momentive Performance Materials, Procter & Gamble, and The Hartford.

Lally graduates consistently earn higher starting salaries in the job market -- approximately $10,000 more than the national average last year.

Professional and Post Professional Degree Programs at Rensselaer

Rensselaer offers several professional degree programs for both existing professionals and recent college graduates seeking to enhance their career opportunities. Professional degrees available at Rensselaer include the Master of Engineering (M.Eng.) degree, the Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degree, and the NAAB-accredited Master of Architecture (M.Arch.) I degree. A post-professional M.Arch. II is also offered.

Rensselaer's Lally School of Management offers an M.B.A. program that is smartly tailored to the 21st century. Lally M.B.A. students differentiate themselves from traditional M.B.A. students, as they gain advantages in recognizing emerging trends and are acutely sensitized to the role innovation plays in business. While the Lally School focuses on the intersection of management, entrepreneurship, and innovation, that focus is placed within a context of broad conceptual knowledge. Lally's genuinely interdisciplinary environment prepares students for the core elements that are critical to business success: rigorous analysis, relationships and teamwork, a global perspective, agility, and leadership.

Rensselaer's School of Architecture offers the M.Arch. I and M.Arch. II degrees. The M.Arch. I is based in the Troy, NY campus, and the M.Arch. II program is situated at the Center for Architecture Science and Ecology (CASE) in New York City. At Rensselaer's School of Architecture, professors include internationally known practitioners who collaborate with students in an environment marked by a sense of shared purpose. Rensselaer is renowned for growing leaders who are able to merge a finely honed sense of design with exceptional computational and digital strengths. Students develop a comprehensive understanding of built ecology and sustainability, proficiency with technology, a connection to community, and a truly global perspective.

Financial Aid Opportunities at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Research and teaching assistantships and university, corporate, or national fellowships fund many of Rensselaer's full-time graduate students. Graduate assistantships are awarded by academic departments on the basis of scholastic accomplishments, academic promise, and competence.

Appointments are made on an annual basis. The positions usually require 20 hours of work each week under the guidance of Rensselaer faculty members.

Continuation of Rensselaer financial assistance depends on satisfactory academic standing, research or teaching performance, and aid availability.

Teaching Assistants (T.A.)

Students assist Rensselaer faculty members in their classroom and laboratory activities, gaining valuable experience as researchers, scholars, and teachers. Departments provide stipends and full-tuition waivers. Master's degree students may spend a maximum of one year with internal support; doctoral students may spend a maximum of two years with internal support. Continued support can then be provided by means of research assistantships.

Research Assistants (R.A.)

Each R.A. works with the faculty members in research-related tasks that further each student's own graduate career and development as a researcher, scholar, and professional. Research assistants are paid stipends and are given full waivers of tuition.

Graduate Fellowships

Outstanding students may be awarded a university-supported Rensselaer Graduate Fellowship Award, which carries a full-tuition and fees scholarship, and a minimum stipend of $18,500 per academic year. Students are nominated by their departments for Rensselaer Graduate Fellowship consideration.


Merit-based scholarship opportunities are available for those seeking admission to the professional degree programs and Master of Fine Arts program.

Location & Contact

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

110 8th Street
Troy, NY 12180-3590
United States

Ms. Christina Murray

Director of Graduate Admissions

Phone: 518-276-3062
Fax: 518-276-4072

Request More Info

Colleges, Departments, and Programs

Tuition & Fees

  • Tuition & Fees
    • In-state tuition *$46,700
    • Out-of-state tuition *$46,700
    • International student tuitionNot Reported
  • Financial Support
    • Financial award applicants must submitNot Reported
    • Application deadlines for financial awardsNot Reported
    • Types of financial support availableNot Reported

Student Body

  • Gender
    • Total Graduate Students1204
    • Female Percentage29%
    • Male Percentage71%
  • Participation
    • Total Graduate Students1204
    • Part-time Percentage12%
    • Full-time Percentage88%
  • Ethnicity
    • Hispanic / LatinoNot Reported
    • Black / African AmericanNot Reported
    • White / CaucasianNot Reported
    • American Indian / Alaskan NativeNot Reported
    • AsianNot Reported
    • Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific IslanderNot Reported
    • Two or more racesNot Reported
    • UnknownNot Reported


  • Faculty Breakout
    • Total Faculty1,232
    • Full-time Percentage89%
    • Part-time Percentage11%
    • Female Percentage23%
    • Male Percentage77%