Admissions Procedure

Required Entrance Exam

The High School for Math, Science and Engineering (HSMSE) at The City College of New York is one of eight highly selective public high schools established and run by the New York City Department of Education to serve the needs of academically gifted students. The High School for Math, Science and Engineering at City College, The High School for American Studies at Lehman College, The Queens High School for The Sciences at York College, The Bronx High School of Science, Brooklyn Technical High School, The Brooklyn Latin School, Staten Island Technical High School, and Stuyvesant High School award admissions to those students who earn the highest scores on the written entrance exam, the Specialized High School Admissions Test (SHSAT).

Test Scores and Results

The New York City Specialized High School Admissions Test (SHSAT) is offered to all eighth and ninth grade students residing within the five boroughs of New York City who wish to attend one of the eight specialized high schools. The same examination is given for all eight schools, and students who qualify may attend the school of their choice. The qualifying score depends upon the number of seats available and the scores of all the candidates. The tests are graded and arranged in order of rank, from the highest score to the lowest score. Each school has a number of freshman and sophomore seats to fill. Seats are filled starting with the highest test scores.

Students who miss the cutoff of their first-choice school may be assigned to their second-choice school if their score is above the cutoff for that school. This procedure continues until all seats in all eight schools have been filled.

It is required that students take the exam at the designated school in their borough. Applications for the exam and information about the eight specialized high schools are available at all New York City schools serving eighth and ninth graders. The SHSAT is administered late in October of each year. Students are notified of their acceptance into one of the specialized high schools the following March.

Test dates and additional information about the SHSAT can be found on the New York City Dept. of Education website here:

The SHSAT Has Changed!

Starting in the fall of 2017, students will take the new form of the SHSAT. Information pertaining to the newly redesigned test can be found here: Redesigned SHSAT FAQs

Tours of HSMSE are only offered during our Fall Open House. Please check the Specialized High School Handbook for dates. We do not offer a spring Open House. Accepted students will be able to visit HSMSE for an information session before final high school decisions are due.



If you missed the tour, please view our slideshow for an inside look at HSMSE and Baskerville Hall!


As we transition our new Parent Coordinator for the 2017-2018 school year, please forward your questions and concerns to and our administration will review the emails once a week for responses.

For incoming Freshman Parents please review the school website for FAQ and send emails to with the subject Heading “Freshman Parent Questions – (Insert Name of Student)”.

If you have other questions about HSMSE or the high school admissions process, visit or call 212-281-6490, ext 5200

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