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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 $120 for domestic applicants and $140 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 (waived for Fall 2022 admissions, please do not send scores)
  • 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 (1500 word limit)
  • Indicate up to 3 faculty mentors of interest 
  • 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 2022 Admissions)

September 9, 2021

Application Website Open

December 1, 2021

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 not part of Fall 2022 requirements

January, 2022

Review of Applications by Committee

Mid January, 2022

Invitations to Open House sent

February, 2022

Open House* (by invitation only)

*Some interviews and compontents will be conducted virtually. We will host a small (invitation only) in person Open House. 

March, 2022

Admission Offers Sent

April 15, 2022

Acceptance Responses 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 the Graduate Coordinator if you're 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.