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Application Information

Thank you for your interest in applying to our Ph.D. program. The Department accepts applications of students interested in obtaining a doctoral degree. The department does not admit students who are interested solely in obtaining a Master's Degree.

Students are only admitted into the program for Fall Quarter. The school year typically begins the third week of September. 

The online application system will accept applications for Fall 2020 beginning Monday, September 9, 2019. Applications must be submitted no later than Tuesday, December 10, 2019.

Students who wish to apply for the Ph.D. program must present the following materials on the UCSD Application for Graduate Admission (online only):


  1. Official evidence that a baccalaureate degree has been received from an accredited institution or the equivalent, with training comparable to that provided by the University of California.
  2. Transcripts from each college attended. Applicants will be asked to upload their transcripts to the online graduate application system directly for review purposes. If nominated for admission, applicants must then provide official hard copy transcripts to the Graduate Division Admissions office.
  3. Three letters of recommendations from faculty members familiar with previous work and able to assess the potential for graduate study (Letters are to be submitted ONLINE ONLY. No paper letters will be accepted).
  4. Official score reports on the Graduate Record Examination (institution code 4836, department code 1902). Please verify your name on the GRE test matches the name entered in the UCSD application.
  5. Statement of Purpose.
  6. Writing sample, optional. For those who submit a writing sample, any length is acceptable. We highly encourage research papers.
  7. Application fee ($120 US Citizens & Permanent Residents / $140 International Students)
    1. Applicants may submit up to three applications for the same term with one application fee. However, each application must be submitted to a different department and only one application may be in-progress at a time.
    2. Fee waivers are only available to US Citizens and Permanent Residents. For more information, please refer to the Graduate Division's information page on application fees and fee waivers.

International Students: UCSD encourages and welcomes applications from international students. UCSD is committed to excellence and diversity in our graduate program. International students who have not met the language test waiver requirements must submit valid TOEFL or IELTS scores.