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Graduate Admissions

Ph.D. Program in Experimental Psychology

The Department of Psychology is looking for bright, accomplished, and motivated people to join our team of students and faculty who are committed to research and teaching. 


The application fee is $135 for domestic applicants and $155 for international applicants.


  • Psychology majors and minors (or closely related fields) preferred
    • Applicants with training in mathematics and/or other scientific fields may also be a good fit
  • Research experience required 
    • Prior exposure to research can help determine what psychological research questions interest you, and can inform whether applying to a graduate program with a strong focus on research is appropriate 
    • Research experiences build characteristics that are important for our graduate students to have, such as being organized, taking initiative, and remaining dedicated through obstacles and failures  
    • Some examples of research experiences include: paid or unpaid research positions at a university or hospital, working in research and development (R&D) or data science for a company, or independent research endeavors that demonstrate graduate-level research readiness 
  • Statistics background required 
    • Our graduate students take a set of advanced statistics courses in their first year and frequently put their statistical toolbox to practical use in their research, so it is important that students come in with a good foundation 
    • Some examples of this include: taking university-level statistics courses, or learning statistical packages or coding languages (e.g. R, MATLAB) 
  • GPA over 3.0 (cumulative from most recent degree; Bachelor’s degree or higher) required
  • GRE required (OPTIONAL for Fall 2024 admissions)
  • International students only: TOEFL (550-paper model, 85-ibT) or IELTS (minimum band score 7)
    • More information on English language proficiency is available here

Application Requirements:

  • Minimum of 3 recommendation letters 
  • Resume/CV
  • Statement of Purpose (2 pages: maximum 1500 word count, Times New Roman, Size 12 font)
  • Indicate up to 3 faculty advisors of interest
  • Unofficial Transcript (official transcript required if admitted to the program)
  • Academic and personal history questions 
  • Additional questions about topics such as community involvement, ethics, leadership, and overcoming adversity 

Useful Information for Submitting Scores and Preparing an Application:

  • UC San Diego school code: 4836 (No department code needed)
  • TOEFL Psychology Dept code: 08
  • Online Application Psychology code: 81
  • Application resources from the UC San Diego Career Center: click here
  • Application resources from the UC San Diego Undergraduate Department of Psychology: click here

Timeline (Fall 2024 Admissions)

September 6, 2023

Application Website Open

December 6, 2023

Deadline for Submitting Application (All materials must be received by this date. GRE* must be taken no later than November to ensure scores are available for review.) 

*GRE is optional for Fall 2024

December 2023

Application Review by Committee

Interview Invitations sent out to Applicants Late December

January 9-11, 2024

Virtual Open House Interviews (by invitation only)

February 5-6, 2024

In-Person Open House (by invitation only)

Late February 2024

Admission Offers Sent

April 15, 2024

Acceptance Response Deadline

Department Address:

Department of Psychology Graduate Admissions
University of California, San Diego
9500 Gilman Dr. #0109
La Jolla, CA 92093-0109


Review our frequently asked questions (FAQs) and contact Psychology Graduate Admissions (grad-admission-psyc-g@ucsd.eduif your questions aren't answered there or on our website.

NOTE: If you are looking for information about the JDP Clinical Psychology program, please visit San Diego State's website. The JDP in Clinical Psychology program is administered through SDSU and the Psychiatry Department here at UC San Diego and not the Psychology Department.