Cornell has the only Fiber Science & Apparel Design department in the Ivy League, and therefore attracts top faculty and students. Approximately 25 students from various locations throughout the United States and abroad are currently enrolled as graduate students in the Field of Fiber Science & Apparel Design. Many graduates of the program enter industrial careers in research and development, design, and product development; others find employment in higher education and government.
The Fall admission deadline is January 15 to be guaranteed consideration for available financial aid. Graduate study applications are submitted directly to the Graduate School of Cornell University, which has jurisdiction over all graduate work and advanced academic degrees. Note that we will not review your application until it is fully complete, including test scores. Please do not include copies of certificates, passports or other documents.
Admissions are based on evidence of potential capability for advanced study. Applicants to the MA, MS and PhD must take the General Graduate Record Exam ( GRE). Applicants to the MPS do not need to submit GRE scores.
International applicants must demonstrate proficiency in the English language by taking a TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) exam. Cornell must receive official TOEFL or IELTS scores before the university can process your application. TOEFL and IELTS scores are valid only if dated within two years of your program's application deadline. Minimum TOEFL scores are as follows: 600 for the paper-based exam or the following scores from tests taken after September 1, 2005: Writing 20, Listening 15, Reading 20, Speaking 22. If ALL of these scores are not met, applications will not be reviewed. The Graduate School requires an overall band score of a 7.0 or higher on the IELTS. Please email the graduate school for information about how to send your scores.
Cornell University expects all applicants to complete their application materials without the use of paid agents, credentials services, or other paid professional assistance. The use of such services violates University policy, and may lead to the rejection of application materials, the revocation of an admissions offer, cancellation of admission, or involuntary withdrawal from the University.
Applicants who wish to specialize in Fiber Science, for the MS, MPS or PhD degree, must have completed courses in calculus, physics and organic chemistry. Applicants for the PhD must already hold an MS in textile chemistry, textile science, polymer science, engineering, chemistry, physics, applied mathematics, or a similar discipline, or apply for the combined MS/PhD, where they will complete the MS, then begin the PhD. Applicants may be required to make up any deficiencies before admission or as part of the requirements for the degree.
Applicants who wish to specialize in Apparel Design for an MPS, MA or PhD may be asked to submit a portfolio. For those whose research will be in applied design areas, a portfolio is required. Other research areas may not require a portfolio. Portfolios may be either traditional hard copy or electronic and should contain whatever you feel is necessary to show your work. Uploaded portfolios need to be fewer than 10 MB. Send hard copy portfolios to the Graduate Field Assistant at:
Graduate Field Assistant
Fiber Science & Apparel Design
Ithaca, NY 14853-4401
Financial support, in the form of teaching assistantships or research assistantships, is available for the most qualified applicants. Full assistantships include tuition and individual health insurance. Assistantships are offered for the academic year, mid-August through mid-May. In addition, students may compete for university and college fellowships, of which one college fellowship is specifically designated for students in the Field of Fiber Science & Apparel Design.
Requests for financial support are made on the application for admission at the Cornell Graduate School. The Fall application deadline for University Fellowships is January 10. Applying for other aid by February 15 is recommended and ensures full consideration for assistantships and fellowships, which are usually assigned by late March or early April.
Partial summer support from research grants is available to qualified students at the discretion of individual faculty members.