Advanced Placement/Early Admission

A limited number of such students may be invited to participate in the Advanced Placement/Early Admission (AP/EA) program. AP/EA is a challenging, credit-bearing summer program for high school seniors interested in taking Carnegie Mellon classes for college credit. The classes are actual university courses, condensed and accelerated to fit into a six-week program. If you have completed your junior year of high school, you’re eligible to apply to AP/EA. Please note that your acceptance is based on a review of your qualifications and available space in the program. Applications will only be accepted from rising high school seniors. 

The credit you earn in the AP/EA program can give you a head start in college. At Carnegie Mellon, the academic units earned in the AP/EA program can be applied toward graduation requirements. In most cases these units can also be transferred to other colleges or universities, although some schools do have rules limiting the transfer of summer Pre-College courses. If you do poorly in a class, Carnegie Mellon will not release your records to any prospective college or university to which you apply.

At the end of the program, you will have the opportunity to decide which grades you would or would not like to be kept on permanent record at Carnegie Mellon. In this respect, the program offers students a no-risk opportunity to test their skills at the college level.

AP/EA participants younger than 16 cannot stay in the residence halls on campus and must commute from home.


Algebra, trigonometry and geometry. Pre-calculus or an equivalent course is recommended.

Computer Science
Knowledge of computers or some computer experience in high school is helpful but not required. PSAT Math of 65 or higher, or SAT Math of 650.

Students enrolled in physics, chemistry, biology or engineering must have completed a physics, chemistry or biology high school course.

Students with special qualifications may apply for permission to enroll in a third course with an additional non-refundable charge. Carrying three courses in the AP/EA program is not generally recommended.


AP/EA courses are regular Carnegie Mellon classes, so you should anticipate intense, college-level work. Many of the AP/EA faculty members are the same faculty who teach during the regular school year. View the 2017 AP/EA course list.

AP/EA students are required to take two courses during the summer. This two-course schedule completed in six weeks is comparable in demand to the typical five-course schedule completed in a semester. The flexible AP/EA program allows you to take a combination of math, science engineering and humanities courses.

Fees & Requirements

There are a limited number of scholarships available for students applying for AP/EA and Fine Arts. Scholarships cover the costs of tuition, housing and dining. All students are responsible for the costs of books, supplies, transportation and recreational expenses, with an average cost of $300. Students who are awarded scholarships will be notified in their decision letter.

Full-time AP/EA students cannot be employed on or off campus for the duration of the program.