Application and Admission - Chemistry MS, PhD

**If you are interested in applying to the Chemical Biology, Biochemistry and Biophysics (CB3) Program - click here for application procedures and further details. Application procedures & dealine to apply for this program are different**

General Qualifications of the Applicants: Each year we receive over 150 applications. Of these, we accept 15 into our program. The majority of successful applicants have an undergraduate degree in chemistry or biochemistry with strong classroom performance.  A research background in chemistry is very helpful, but research experience in any field is valuable. We look for strong letters of recommendation and read the "Statement of Purpose" and "Personal History Statement" carefully. Our goal is to identify enthusiastic students who are well-prepared to thrive in an exciting research environment, and who will make the best use of the particular strengths and opportunities in our department.

Admission process: After evaluation of each file, the Admissions Committee ranks the applicants. The number of offers made can fluctuate from year to year, depending on the relative strength and size of the applicant pool, and resources available. We are committed to supporting all of our graduate students for the 5 years of a normal degree. Therefore, our total number of offers is guided by the resources (e.g. Teaching Assistant (TA), Graduate Student Researcher (GSR), Fellowships,etc.) that we expect to have available.
The top ranked applicants are contacted by telephone and invited for a formal interview visit organized by the Admissionns Committee prior to any offer. Prospective students meet with  faculty and students. Feedback from the interview is used to determine offers. Students are required to accept or decline the offer
by April 15.

To be considered for admission to the University of California, Santa Cruz:

• One must have received a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent from an accredited university prior to the quarter for which admission is sought

• Applicants with a three-year Bachelor’s Degree must also hold a post graduate diploma, Master’s Degree, or a higher degree. 

• Have at least a B average in last two years of undergraduate coursework.

Questions? Check our FAQs

Applications are available beginning October 1, 2020. The deadline to apply for the Ph.D. program is January 4, 2021 for acceptance the following fall quarter. As our classes are sequential, we admit only in the fall quarter. All applications to the graduate programs must be submitted on-line.

For instructions on how to apply, visit the Division of Graduate Studies.

A complete application consists of:
1. Submitted on-line application

2. The fee for applying to UC Santa Cruz is $120.00 for U.S. students. If you apply to more than one University of California campus at the same time, submit $120.00 for each UC campus you apply to. Fee waivers are available for students with qualifying family incomes. The fee for international applicants is $140.00 per campus.
3. Unofficial transcripts from each college-level institution attended (official transcripts will be required upon accepting)

4. Three letters of recommendation (submitted on-line). Enter name and email of each recommender in the online application. Recommenders will automatically be sent a link and password. Paper, email or faxed letters will not be accepted.

5. (International Students) Applicants from countries where English is not the primary language must take either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test. Scores are valid for two years and must be submitted directly to UCSC by the testing service. Minimum TOEFL score is 89, minimum IELTS score is 8.

**TOEFL/IELTS waivers for admission purposes only - may be requested by applicants who have completed a four-year bachelor's degree at an English-speaking institution. If you plan to request such a waiver, you must select a back-up method of examination on the admission application in case your request is not approved. Indicate a future testing date and explain your desire and qualifications for a waiver of this requirement on the English Language Competency section of the online application.** There is a different waiver requirement for being hired as a Teaching Assistant. All Chemistry PhD students will be required to TA. Please visit the graduate division webpages for more details.

Application files missing any of the above items will not be reviewed. Several days after your application is submitted online you will be assigned a login and password for your UCSC portal, where you can check on missing items. This information will be posted beginning in early November and updated as materials are received. It is your responsibility to make sure all items have been received by checking your portal frequently.

You may upload a copy of your unofficial transcripts to your online application. This can either be a scanned version of your official transcript, or, if available, a downloaded PDF from your institution's online portal. See the Document Scanning Guidelines for information about scanning and uploading your unofficial transcripts to the admissions application. Once admitted, one official transcript from the Registrar of each institution listed (including university correspondence or extension divisions), or a statement of good standing, if work was not completed, is required. (Request that your transcripts be sent to you.) Each transcript should be in an envelope sealed and signed by the Registrar. To expedite the processing of your application, send your transcripts (leaving each sealed envelope intact) and other required hard-copy materials together in the same envelope to:

U.C. Santa Cruz
Graduate Application Processing
1156 High Street
Santa Cruz, CA 95064

If you attended UC Santa Cruz as an undergraduate, you must also request and pay to have an official transcript sent to Graduate Application Processing from the Registrar's Office. Transcripts submitted to UC Santa Cruz will not be returned to the applicant, nor will copies be forwarded to any other persons or agency. To qualify for graduate study at UC Santa Cruz, you must present official evidence that you have received a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution of higher education. (However, verification of UC Santa Cruz bachelor's degrees can usually be accomplished electronically.)

Application fee waivers are available on the online application for Graduate Opportunity Program applicants and for hardship cases. The university does not waive the application fee ($140) for international applicants.

Departmental financial support is based on merit. The university does not offer need-based financial aid to international applicants. The evaluation process depends on a review of your completed application, the strength of the overall applicant pool, and our target enrollment number. We have in the past offered full support to Ph.D. applicants in the form of teaching assistantships and fellowships. Some amount of funding may be available to M.S. applicants. We let you know if you have been given financial support at the same time we notify you of an admissions decision.

For further information, please contact:

Karen Meece, Graduate Program Coordinator
University of California, Santa Cruz
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
1156 High Street
Santa Cruz, CA 95064