Modeling of adsorption of Cr6+ on to activated carbon prepared from Sterculia foetida dried seed shells under different drying techniques namely sun, oven, and microwave drying (450W, 600W, 900W power). Optimization of process parameters such as pH, adsorbent dosage (g/ml), temperature (°C), contact time (min) were evaluated using Central Composite Rotatable Design (CCRD) of Response Surface Methodology (RSM). For batch adsorption studies at pH 3, adsorbent dosage of 1.5 g/ml, temperature 35°C and contact time 90 min were found to be optimum for the system under consideration and Microwave Activated Carbonized Sterculia foetida (MACSF) at 450W was found to be best suited for the adsorption of Cr+6 ions. The system was found to follow Langmuir type monolayer adsorption for the given operational parameters. SEM analysis was used to study the surface morphology of the carbon samples and the effect of pretreatment on carbonization. © Published under licence by IOP Publishing Ltd.