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Additional Information

View MBSE Policies and Procedures

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To Apply

MBSE encourages applications from all students interested in graduate study towards Ph.D. or M.S. degrees in this exciting multidisciplinary area. Applications are invited from students with undergraduate degrees from any relevant discipline, including the life sciences, the physical sciences, engineering and mathematics. An essential part of the admission process is to find a good match between the interests of the prospective student and MBSE faculty member's research area, so we encourage interested students to begin the application process by contacting the MBSE chair or any MBSE faculty whose research interests them.

We encourage all students to take the GRE general test. Applicants who are not native English speakers should go to the UC Merced Graduate Division website to see additional application requirements.

The admissions committee will make its decisions based on a comprehensive review of undergraduate coursework and GPA, GRE scores, research experience and recommendations in reaching a decision on admission. The deadline for receipt of applications is January 15, but screening of applications will begin December 15. Normally, applications will be accepted for fall semester only, enrollment in other semesters will be considered on an individual basis, with applications due no later than seven months prior to the beginning of the semester when the student would like to begin graduate studies.

GRE scores are optional. We recommend that students weigh the cost of having an official version of the GRE scores shared relative to how much the GRE score improves your application. For example, if a student has low grades but achieved a high GRE score, sending the GRE score enables us to see that the student is quite capable despite the low grades. On the other hand, if the grades are high and the GRE score is low, then the addition of the GRE score is unlikely to strengthen the application, so does not motivate paying the fee to have the score shared with us.

For more information on the application process, or to submit an online application, please see the UC Merced Graduate Division website. A limited number of application fee waivers will be available.


All students pursuing Ph.D. degrees in the MBSE emphasis generally receive a full tuition and fees waiver as well as a stipend for the duration of study in the form of teaching and/or research assistantships as long as they are in residence and maintain adequate progress toward the degree. Stipends and fee waivers may be provided for M.S. degree students on a case-by-case basis.