Admissions FAQs

Here you’ll find answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Admissions into UCLA Graduate Programs.

Admission: General Questions

What are the requirements for admission to graduate programs at UCLA?

The University requires that an applicant hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, comparable in standard and content to a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, with a scholastic average of B (3.0 on a 4.0 scale) or better – or its equivalent if the letter grade system is not used – for the last 60 semester units or last 90 quarter units of undergraduate study and in any post-baccalaureate study.

An international student whose post-secondary education is completed outside of the U.S. is expected to hold a degree with above average scholarship from a university or university-level institution.

Please keep in mind that UCLA graduate programs have additional requirements and/or requirements beyond the minimum given above, and that many more applications are received from qualified applicants than there are places available.

Applicants should contact the programs they are interested in for specific information and applications.

How does the admissions process work at UCLA?

An applicant submits the online Application for Graduate Admission with the nonrefundable application fee ($105 [for U.S. citizens and Permanent Residents], $200 [for the Global Executive MBA — Asia Pacific and Master of Financial Engineering programs], or $125 [for all other applicants]. The applicant uploads transcripts, supplemental information, department-specific material (such as a portfolio), statement of purpose, and letters of recommendation. The applicant’s information then becomes available online to the graduate program.

What does an admissions committee look for when making admission decisions?

This varies by program. Grades, letters of recommendation, writing samples, portfolios of work, auditions, standardized test scores, etc., are some, but not all, of the factors considered by the faculty.  An applicant’s research interests, and the availability of faculty to support those interests, are examples of additional factors in the review process.

How many students apply and are admitted to graduate programs at UCLA?

Prospective applicants to UCLA are encouraged to view our Program Statistics which provides admissions data by academic program. Data includes applicants, admits, and new registered student counts. In addition it provides demographic data on the enrolled student body, the number degrees awarded, and the average time to receive a degree.

May I apply to more than one graduate program at UCLA?

No. University regulations permit an applicant to apply to one major only, with the exception of concurrent or articulated degrees.

Please decide which of our programs is most appropriate for you prior to submitting the Application for Graduate Admission.

Can an applicant enroll in UCLA just to take courses?

No. Students must be admitted to UCLA in a degree program in order to enroll in regular university classes.

You may take courses offered by UCLA Extension without formal admittance to UCLA. For more information, call (310) 825-9971.

UCLA Summer Session offers courses to non-graduate students during the summer term.

How do I apply for an MBA program at UCLA?

Information about and applications to any program offered by the John E. Anderson Graduate School of Management are available on Anderson website.

How do I apply for a degree in Dentistry/Law/Medicine at UCLA?

For admission to the DDS, JD, or MD program at UCLA, please contact the respective school:

Should I pay the application fee if I was admitted to a graduate program at UCLA last year but did not attend?

No. Complete the online Application for Graduate Admission and, in the Plans for Graduate Study panel select Renewal from the Application Type drop-down menu. Renewals are accepted only during the calendar year following your initial admission.

I was a graduate student at UCLA. How do I apply for readmission to my graduate program (or another graduate program)?

Complete the online Application for Graduate Admission and, in the Plans for Graduate Study panel, select Readmit from the Application Type drop-down menu.

How is California residency determined?

Residence for tuition purposes is determined solely by residence deputies in the Registrar’s Office. Admitted applicants complete the online Statement of Intent to Register and Statement of Legal Residence, and the deputies make their determination from the latter document.

Admission: Test Scores

What is the minimum GRE score required to be admitted to UCLA?

GRE requirements vary by graduate program. Applicants should contact the graduate program they are interested in to get details on specific admission requirements.

For the scores to match up electronically, applicants must use exactly the same personal information (name, date of birth, SSN if available) on the GRE application as on the UCLA graduate application. They must also request that scores be sent to UCLA, the GRE institution code for UCLA R4837. Applicants should submit their application by the published deadline whether or not they have received their official scores.

What is the minimum TOEFL score required to be admitted to UCLA?

The overall minimum score for TOEFL is 87.  Your subscores should be as follows:  Writing – 25; Speaking – 24; Reading – 21; Listening – 17.

What if my TOEFL/IELTS score is below the minimum?

English language ability is important to success as a graduate student at UCLA.  You are strongly encouraged to improve your language ability and submit scores that meet UCLA’s minimum requirements.

Can the application be submitted before I take the TOEFL or GRE/the scores are ready?

Submit your application by the deadline! As long as your test scores arrive soon after, the time lapse should not be a problem. If your test is scheduled after the published application deadline, contact the program you’re applying to to determine any deadlines they have for score submission. Please note that personal information shown on the test report (name, date of birth etc.) must match exactly with what you enter on UCLA’s Application for Graduate Admission.

I am an international student (or a U.S. citizen or Permanent Resident educated outside the U.S.), and I want to know if I need to take TOEFL exam or not?

Please visit our English Requirements page to determine if you are required to prove your English proficiency.

Where can an applicant get information regarding the GRE/TOEFL/IELTS examinations?

You’ll find GRE and TOEFL information at Educational Testing Service (ETS). More information on the IELTS is available by visiting IELTS International. UCLA Extension offers courses on GRE and/or TOEFL exam test preparation.

How can I confirm my test scores have been received by UCLA?

Contact your proposed major about receipt of official scores.

ETS doesn’t have a code for the department I’m applying to/I indicated a different major on my score request from the one I’m applying to. Will my scores match up to my application?

As long as you gave the same personal information (name, date of birth, gender, and Social Security number if available) to ETS as you give on your application, your scores will match up regardless of the major you listed.

Fee Waivers: Need-based

Will you waive the fee if I can prove financial need?

Waivers of UCLA’s application fee are available for U.S. citizens, Permanent Residents and others who meet the following criteria:

You must be currently enrolled in a college or university, and receiving need-based financial aid (if not a U.S. citizen or Permanent Resident, this financial aid must come from the state of California), and submit a statement from your Financial Aid officer confirming the above and stating that payment of UCLA’s $105 application fee would be a financial hardship.

There is a section of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission for uploading the statement from the Financial Aid officer.

Fee waivers for special programs

I am a CSU Sally Casanova Pre-Doctoral Scholars Program applicant. How do I submit the application with a fee waiver?

Applicants who are participants in the California State University Sally Casanova Pre-Doctoral Scholars Program are eligible for a waiver of the application fee. In the Plans for Graduate Study panel of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission, select and click CSU Casanova Predoc from the Program Participation drop down menu. A letter from the program verifying participation should be scanned and uploaded into that panel, or sent to your major program.

I am a McNair Scholar. How do I submit the application with a fee waiver?

Applicants who are McNair Scholars are eligible for a waiver of the application fee. In the Plans for Graduate Study panel of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission, select and click McNair from the Program Participation drop down menu. A letter from the McNair program director verifying participation should be scanned and uploaded into that panel, or sent to your major program.

I am a Summer Programs for Undergraduate Research (SPUR) applicant. How do I submit the application with a fee waiver?

Applicants who are sponsored by the Summer Programs for Undergraduate Research (SPUR) are eligible for a waiver of the application fee. In the Plans for Graduate Study panel of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission, select and click SPUR from the Program Participation drop down menu. A letter from the program verifying participation should be scanned and uploaded into that panel, or sent to your major program.

I am a UC Leadership Excellence through Advanced Degrees (UC LEADS) applicant. How do I submit the application with a fee waiver?

Applicants who participated in UC LEADS are eligible for a waiver of the application fee. In the Plans for Graduate Study panel of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission, select and click UC LEADS from the Program Participation drop down menu. A letter from the program verifying participation should be scanned and uploaded into that panel, or sent to your major program.

I am a Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC) applicant. How do I submit the application with a fee waiver?

Applicants who participated in MARC are eligible for a waiver of the application fee. In the Plans for Graduate Study panel of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission, select and click MARC from the Program Participation drop down menu. A letter from the program verifying participation should be scanned and uploaded into that panel, or sent to your major program.

I am a Louis Stokes Alliances/California Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP/CAMP) applicant. How do I submit the application with a fee waiver?

Applicants who participated in LSAMP or CAMP are eligible for a waiver of the application fee. In the Plans for Graduate Study panel of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission, select and click LSAMP or CAMP from the Program Participation drop down menu. A letter from the program verifying participation should be scanned and uploaded into that panel, or sent to your major program.

I am a Florida A and M University Graduate Feeder Scholars Program (FAMU GFSPP) applicant. How do I submit the application with a fee waiver?

Applicants who participated in FAMU GFSP are eligible for a waiver of the application fee. In the Plans for Graduate Study panel of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission, select and click FAMU GFSP from the Program Participation drop down menu. A letter from the program verifying participation should be scanned and uploaded into that panel, or sent to your major program.

I am a UC-HBCU Initiative participant. How do I submit the application with a fee waiver?

Applicants participating in the UC HBCU Initiative are eligible for a waiver of the application fee. In the Plans for Graduate Study panel of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission, select and click UC-HBCU Initiative from the Program Participation drop down menu. A letter from the program verifying participation should be scanned and uploaded into that panel, or sent to your major program.

I am a Gates Millennium Scholar. How do I submit the application with a fee waiver?

Applicants who are Gates Millennium Scholars are eligible for a waiver of the application fee. In the Plans for Graduate Study panel of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission, select and click Gates Millennium Scholars from the Program Participation drop down menu. A letter from the program verifying participation should be scanned and uploaded into that panel, or sent to your major program.

I am a Minority Biomedical Research Support (MBRS)/Research Initiative For Science Enhancement (MBRS RISE) participant. How do I submit the application with a fee waiver?

Applicants who participated in MBRS or MBRS RISE are eligible for a waiver of the application fee. In the Plans for Graduate Study panel of the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission, select and click MBRS or MBRS RISE from the Program Participation drop down menu. A letter from the program verifying participation should be scanned and uploaded into that panel, or sent to your major program.

Completing the application: Academic History, Uploads

Should I send duplicates of all materials (transcripts, test scores, statement of purpose, etc) to the Graduate Division?

Nothing should be sent to the Graduate Division. Upload your (unofficial) transcripts, test scores, statement of purpose, portfolio or writing sample (if required by the major program), letter of recommendation requests, etc. into the UCLA Application for Graduate Admission. Have official transcripts sent directly to the major program.

How do I find about the status of my application?

Please contact the major program directly with questions about receipt of application materials.

How do I change my email or mailing (street) address?

To request a change to personal information after you have submitted your application, please contact the program to which you are applying.

Can you help me with technical problems?

There is a yellow Help button in the lower right hand corner of every page of the application, including the login page and the letter of recommendation form.  Users will receive either a response from a help desk representative or a confirmation that the request has been received shortly after submitting a request.

How can I find my institution in the academic history section?

Use the widest possible search parameters as stated on the application:  by selecting the country or U.S. state where your institution is located from the drop down list.  Be sure to leave City Name and Institution Name fields blank! Searching this way returns a full list of all the universities in your country or state.

If there are many academic institutions in your state or country, use the alphabetical filter on the right hand side of the Academic History panel. If you don’t find your university on the list, select Other University from the list of institutions in your state or country.

Do I need to upload the final transcript before the deadline?

Many applicants still have work in progress at the time of the deadline.  Upload your most recent transcript, which may not have any of your senior year coursework on it.

Should I upload a transcript from the community college I attended?

The University of California is interested in learning how many applicants to graduate school attended community college.  There are optional questions about community college on the application, but community college transcripts are neither required nor requested.

If your coursework at community college is directly related (e.g., fulfills prerequisites) to the program to which you are applying, upload the transcript into the Supporting Documents section.  If your community college coursework transferred to your bachelor’s degree, don’t upload anything from your community college.

How do I submit my test scores?

UCLA receives most official test scores (GRE, TOEFL) electronically from ETS, and IELTS scores directly from IELTS. Further information about the GRE and TOEFL, including UCLA’s school code (4837) and department codes (to route your hardcopy scores to your proposed major program), is available on the ETS website.

In order for your official scores to be matched to your application, be sure that the personal information you give on the Application for Graduate Admission is exactly the same as the information you gave at the time you took the test.

You may submit your application if you have not yet taken the GRE (if required by your program) or TOEFL or IELTS tests and plan to take the test in the future. Enter the planned future date of the test(s) and leave the score section blank.  Be sure to contact your proposed major if your scores won’t arrive by the application deadline.

If you have taken the GRE, TOEFL or IELTS more than once, and the testing agency transmits your scores to UCLA, all of the scores will appear as part of your application. TOEFL and IELTS test-takers, please note: Only your most recent test scores are considered as part of your application.

If I decide not to submit my application, how can I delete it?

After 30 days of non-activity your application will be automatically deleted.

Completing the application: Letters of recommendation

Where do I send my transcripts?

Send one official copy of your transcripts directly to the program to which you are applying.

Where do my professors send letters of recommendation?

After you enter their names and emails, you can send the invitation to  your professors via an envelope icon in the left hand menu of the application.  An email request will be sent to them; your recommenders must respond to the email request and submit their letters online.

Can I submit my application even if my recommenders have not yet completed the recommendation forms?

Yes!  Don’t wait for your recommenders!  Be sure to submit your application by the deadline!

Your recommenders may submit their letters later — but not too much later. You can send reminders to your recommenders via the application.

My recommender is having trouble submitting the letter of recommendation to my application. What can I do?

There is a yellow Help button in the lower right hand corner of every page of the application, including the letter of recommendation form.  Users will receive either a response from a help desk representative or a confirmation that the request has been received shortly after submitting a request. Please encourage your professors to report any difficulties with the letter of recommendation form and upload via that link.

I submitted my application, but I have been informed that the recommenders are not able to access the recommendation form. Could you please tell me what I should do?

Many email service providers have upgraded their spam blocking tools to allow their customers greater control over received messages. To ensure that important system messages are received by the recommendation providers, please have them add the following email address to their address book and/or your list of approved email addresses: no-reply@decisiondesk.com.

After your recommendation provider has added that email address, then you can resend the recommendation notification from your application (from the Letter of Recommendation panel). Login to your application, and then click on the Letter of Recommendations panel. Use the envelope icon to re-send the invitations

How can I find out the status of my Letter of Recommendation requests?

Log back into the application and go to the Letter of Recommendations section.  There you’ll be able to see whether your recommenders have submitted their letters.

I did not waive my right to view my letters of recommendation. How do I get access to them?

Applicants are not permitted to inspect letters of recommendation in their UCLA files, per University policy.

Only if a) you are admitted and enroll at UCLA, and b) you did not waive your right to view them, would you be able to request to see your letters of recommendation.

Completing the application: Communications

How can I find out the status of my application?

For any inquiries about the progress of your submitted application (whether official transcripts or other supporting materials that you did not upload into the application have been received, etc.) you should contact the program to which you are applying.

How do I find out my UCLA ID number?

After you submit your application, an email acknowledgment will be sent to you within 72 hours. This email includes your nine-digit UCLA ID number.  We send it from gradapp@mvs.ais.ucla.edu. Be sure to clear this address in your address book/filter to avoid its being redirected as spam.

If I submitted my application after the deadline, will my application be considered?

Some UCLA programs have absolutely firm deadlines. Others may be more flexible depending on circumstances.  Before you submit a late application, please contact the program directly to learn whether it can be considered. It is especially important to ask before submitting a late application because the application fee is not refundable.

How long will it take to make a decision on my application?

Application materials are reviewed by faculty admissions committees in each major program who select the best qualified applicants. These admissions committees base their recommendations for admission upon a careful comparison of applications, and this may take considerable time.

There is no guarantee that any applicant will receive a response, favorable or unfavorable, on or before any specific date. Applicants, moreover, should not construe a lack of response as an intention to act favorably on the application.

You may contact your proposed major program directly if you are concerned that something may be missing from your portfolio that is delaying the decision process.

How will I be notified of the decision?

Once a decision has been made, an email will be sent from the Graduate Division to the email address you provided in the application. The email does not contain the decision; instead, you will be advised how to access your decision letter.

Please note that the decision cannot be given over the telephone.

To view your decision status on-line, please visit the Decision Status Login page.

How do I apply to be a TA/RA?

Teaching assistantships and research appointments are part of merit-based funding awarded by the program. Applicants do not apply directly for this funding.

What if I still have an unanswered question about graduate admissions?

If you have questions or problems that are not answered here, please email us at: onlineAppHelp@grad.ucla.edu and we will do our best to assist you.