Madhuri Sale, in her early twenties, who belonged to Nalgonda district of Andhra Pradesh, was found hanging from the ceiling fan with the help of her 'dupatta' (scarf), IIT-K Registrar Sanjeev Kashalkar said.
A three-member committee has been set up by the IIT administration to probe the death of the civil engineering student, he said, adding it was not immediately known why she took the extreme step.
No suicide note has been found from her room which was searched for a possible clue, police said.
The incident came to light when her friends suspected something wrong as she did not respond to repeated knockings. When they peeped inside, they found her hanging.
Police broke open the door of the hostel room and took out her body. The news triggered panic on the campus and the girl's colleagues refused to say anything about the incident, which came at a time when examinations are on.
IIT authorities have informed the parents of the girl and sent the body for post-mortem examination.