Carnegie Mellon University

Tuition and Financial Aid

We understand that graduate school is a significant investment both in terms of time as well as money. You’re likely wondering: Is it worth it?

Is it worth investing in safety features for your car? When buying a home, is it worth investing in a property with access to great schools? What about your career? Isn't that worth investing in? 

When considering this question, it's vital to consider the cost of tuition in the context of median salaries for our graduates.

Median Costs and Salaries 2019

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240%

Average increase in MSE salary over entry level programmer salary*

*As according to Payscale aggregated data for Computer Programmers

100%

Average MSE grads who report job offers within three months (2016-2019)†

Based on graduates who responded to our survey.

2021-22 Tuition

Tuition for the software engineering professional program is comparable to other Carnegie Mellon graduate degree programs, and generally follows the suggested graduate tuition rates and expenses for the School of Computer Science.

MSE MSE-SS & MSE-ES MSE Online

Program Length
Total Units
Total Tuition
Per Unit Rate

4 semesters
184
$94,500 
$657

4 semesters
157
$77,700
$720
6-8 semesters
108
$54,756
$507

In addition to housing and living expenses, additional student fees include health insurance, transportation, and a spring and fall semester Carnegie Mellon technology fee. Online, part-time students pay only the technology fee and transportation expenses for on-campus activities.

"The MSE prepares you so well for so many challenges, technical or managerial, both inside the software industry and out. Often you don't fully realize the impact of the MSE until many years later. But without a doubt, the return on investment for me has been off the charts."

Eduardo Frias (MSE '94)
Partner, Whitespectre

MSE Financial Aid Opportunities

James E. Tomayko Scholarship

The James E. Tomayko Scholarship is awarded to one or more students who demonstrate academic excellence, leadership potential, strong communication skills, exceptional personal initiative, and demonstrated financial need. Prospective awardees are generally identified upon the completion of one full semester in the program, with recipients chosen by committee.

Eduardo and Norma Frias Scholarship

The Eduardo and Norma Frias Scholarship is awarded to a student who demonstrates a commitment to academic excellence and leadership potential, and has financial need. The scholarship is to be applied toward one semester of tuition offset. Prospective awardees are generally identified upon the completion of one full semester in the program, with recipients chosen by committee.

MSE Research Fellowship

The MSE Research Fellowship is a one-year fellowship extended to an MSE student who demonstrates exceptional academic performance, significant potential as a researcher, strong leadership and communication skills, and notable motivation and initiative. It provides an opportunity for a student to gain the necessary research skills needed for graduate study at the Ph.D. level. Qualified students should make their interest known to the Program Manager by their third (summer) semester of study.

Director’s List

It pays to work hard and apply yourself. The Director’s List recognizes the top 5-10% of the class who demonstrate academic excellence, leadership potential, strong communication skills, and exceptional personal initiative. Unlike the James E. Tomayko or Eduardo and Norma Frias Scholarships, financial need is not a factor. Prospective awardees are generally identified upon the completion of one full semester in the program, with recipients chosen by committee.