USC Viterbi Application Tips

We know this time of year is busy with filling out your college applications, and we wanted to make sure we answered some of your frequently asked questions to help you through this process.  Below is a list of the questions we get most frequently from people applying to USC Viterbi.

Just a year or two ago, our current students were going through the college application process too and they want to help. Check out our completely Viterbi Voices – a site completely run by our students to give you a peek into their lives as engineering students at USC. They blog regularly, have very active social media accounts, videos, and much more. Their Tips to Apply page details all of their best tips for applying to college.

You should also listen to our Viterbi Voices podcast called Busting Admission Myths with Paul Ledesma, Director of Undergraduate Admission for USC Viterbi, where some current engineering students ask him some burning questions about the application process.

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I completed the Common App and the USC Writing Supplement (with my first choice major as one of the engineering majors), is there anything extra I need to fill out for engineering?

No, you’re done! The only thing you need is a complete Common Application with the USC writing supplement.  We do not require any extra materials for engineering.

Should I submit my SAT II Subject Test Scores?

We don’t require any extra materials beyond the common application and USC writing supplement, so you do not need to send in your scores.

What if my test scores, recommendation letters, or transcript arrive after the application deadline?

That’s fine! The only thing that must be submitted by the deadline is your application.  We understand you don’t have much control over when your recommendations and everything else arrive, but please be sure it’s as close to the deadline as possible to make sure it is there before we start reading your application!

How can I confirm USC received my SAT scores, transcript, etc.?

Beginning in late October, you can log into your account at you.usc.edu to see what we have received.  Keep in mind that it could take between 2-4 business days to process your materials, so please be patient!

I submitted my application and did not list engineering as my first choice major, but now I want to study engineering.  Is it possible to change my selection?

Definitely! We just need an email stating what you listed as your first choice major, and what you would like it changed to.  Please be sure to include your full name and USCID.  But keep in mind that this must be done as soon as possible in order for us to consider your application.

If I complete my application by December 1st, have I already applied for financial aid?

No! You still need to! By submitting the Common Application & USC Writing Supplement by December 1st you will be automatically considered for the top, merit-based scholarships at USC.  Note that there are some scholarships listed here that have separate applications and/or deadlines.

Now that you are done with your application your next step is to complete the Financial Aid application process to be considered for need-based Financial Aid.  Instructions and the link to the applications are listed here.  In addition, you may want to search for even more scholarships to which you can apply.

I forgot to apply by December 1st, can I still apply?

Yes! We accept applications for admission through January 15th.  The December 1st deadline is to be considered for merit based scholarships from the university, so you can still apply after that deadline!


We hope this has helped you with your questions, and if you come up with any more please feel free to reach out to us at viterbi.admission@usc.edu, or call our office Monday-Friday, 8:30-5:00 at (213) 740-4530.

If you have any technical difficulties with the Common App, the Common App Support Team is available 24 hours a day to help you!

Best of luck in the college application process. We look forward to reading your applications. Fight On!

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