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Domestic students

New Grad Students: Domestic | International | Health | Housing | Enrolling | GRA Positions

Arrival dates


For our domestic students--in other words US citizens who have been admitted to the MSE or WE graduate degree programs--you may arrive on campus as early as you wish. 

Funded by GRA/Fellowship

For those of our domestic MSE or WE students funded by a GRA or Fellowship, there is an arrival process required that must be completed to assure that funding is in place to provide tuition and stipend funds. For the term listed, please arrive by the date below to assure that your funding is in place to pay tuition costs and provide you a monthly stipend by the end of the first month of the term.

Term GRA Arrive by Term starts
Autumn 2019 Week of 7/29/19 8/20/19
Spring 2020 12/2/19 1/6/20

Please note: If arrival by the given date is impossible, please contact Mark Cooper immediately.

Prior to arrival, please schedule a department orientation with Mark Cooper, Graduate Studies Coordinator. Orientations are 30-45 minutes in length and overview important department and graduate studies matters.

Four general items must be addressed prior to arriving on campus (more below)

  1. accept admission
  2. address Graduate School New Student To-Do List
  3. enroll in at least 12 graduate credits
  4. secure temporary and long-term housing.

Accept admission

By way of your OSU application account, please follow the "Accept/Decline" link to formally accept admission.

Please understand: acceptance of admission implies adherence to the university's Code of Student Conduct and an understanding of academic misconduct and its consequences.

Graduate School New Student To-Do List

Please follow the New Student To-Do List provided by the Graduate School.

This checklist addresses the key items required to enroll.

  • Activate your BuckeyePass
  • Activate your Ohio State student/email account
  • Complete the Financial Responsibility Statement
  • Submit final official transcripts (if required)
  • Schedule graduate credits (see below)
  • Obtain a BuckID student identification card *
  • Pay Fees 7 days before the start of the term **

* You will not be able to secure your student ID (BuckID) until you are enrolled and on campus.

** Funded students (GRA/Fellowship) are not required to pay tuition costs.

Registering for graduate credit
Autumn & Spring

CHANGE IN POLICY--please enroll for the coming term

In the past we asked students funded by a GRA/Fellowship to not enroll until funding forms were processed. This policy has changed effective for Autumn 2019.  

Please enroll for 12 credits as follows:

  • 11 credits under your advisor's MSE or WE 6999 Research
  • 1 credit of MSE or WE 7895 Seminar

Before registering for lecture classes, you must first discuss with your advisor which graded courses you should take. Graduate level courses are rarely closed.

After determining which graded courses you will take, you may adjust the number of 6999 credits up or down to bring the balance of your AU or SP enrollment to 18 total credits. See "Course Enrollment" for more information.

If you do not have an advisor

Please contact Mark Cooper for enrollment instructions.


It is strongly recommended that you secure housing, both temporary and long term, prior to your arrival on campus. For further information about the options available, please see the "Housing" page of this site.


MSE - WE orientation

All new MSE and WE students are to schedule an orientation session with Mark Cooper, MSE/WE Graduate Studies Coordinator (contact info above).

These orientations are held in room 5027 Smith Labs, 174 W. 18th Ave. (take the elevator to the OSU Planetarium and turn right when you exit). The session provides information about the MSE dept. and your graduate program, including:

  • registration for GRA employment,
  • health insurance & OSU ID card,
  • enrolling in classes,
  • other general details

Smith Labs location

Graduate School orientation

The Graduate School and the Council of Graduate Students will host a university-wide orientation for all new graduate students (i.e., Spring, Summer, and Autumn arrivals). This orientation will be held on the Sunday before the start of Autumn term classes, from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. This orientation is a very valuable introduction to the services provided by the Graduate School, the Graduate Student Council, and various offices across campus.

Research group orientation

Further orientation concerning office & lab space, work expectations, safety issues and more will be provided by your advisor.

If you do not have an advisor

We do not assign students to advisors. Rather, upon arrival in the department, new students are to meet with the faculty who have GRA openings. This process permits both the faculty and the incoming students a chance to meet and discuss matters of research interests, goals, and expectations. We prefer to have the students and professors work together by mutual agreement whenever possible.

Please note that your areas of interest may not exactly match the GRA openings available. Since the GRA position is often funded by government and/or industrial monies, the scope of one's research must be largely focused on the issue for which the funding was provided.



As regards finances, please note that if you were offered a Graduate Research Associate (GRA) position, you can not be paid until the start of your term of admission.

You will be responsible to supply your own funds from the date you arrive until you receive your first paycheck from the university (approximately FIVE WEEKS AFTER the start of your term of admission due to check processing time). Some additional expenses you may wish to keep in mind:

  • utilities deposits
  • rent for housing (1-2 months' worth of rent)
  • food & entertainment, etc.
  • misc. student fees for which you are responsible (approx. $450 per term--note that for GRA/Fellow-funded students, these fees will be automatically deducted from the student's stipend check and thus do not need to be paid out-of-pocket upon arrival)

Note: If you arrive on campus long before the start of your term of admission, you may face a difficult financial situation in terms of paying for lodging, meals, and recreation.

Health insurance

All domestic students are automatically enrolled in the OSU Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) upon course enrollment. Further information about this health coverage is found on the "Health & Medical" page of this site.