The Department of Cognitive Sciences offers the following Ph.D. degrees:
  • Ph.D. in Cognitive Sciences
  • Ph.D. in Cognitive Sciences with a Concentration in Cognitive Neuroscience
*Note: The degree name changed from Psychology to Cognitive Sciences effective Fall 2019.*

The Ph.D. degree programs prepare students for research and teaching careers in academia, industry, and government. The emphasis is on modern techniques of experimentation and theory construction. Special attention is given to providing hands-on research experience and equipping students with sophisticated mathematical and computing skills. 



Interested in applying to our graduate program? Applications must be submitted using UCI's Online Application for Graduate Admissions.

The UCI campus uses a fully-online graduate application program, Slate. All applications and supplemental application materials are to be sent through Slate, by the applicant. Letters of recommendation will be submitted by recommenders through the application portal.

The deadline to apply is DECEMBER 1. Admission decisions for our program are made in March. Please note that we do not make mid-year (winter or spring) admission offers. Admission is for the beginning of fall only.

The Graduate Admissions Committee meets in December to review applicant files and to determine who will receive an invitation to join us during our annual Graduate Recruitment Visit. This year's recruitment will be held virtually and will take place in late January--early February 2022. This visit is by invitation only.


**IMPORTANT NOTICE FOR FALL 2022 APPLICANTS: In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the department has waived the GRE requirement for the Fall 2022 admissions cycle. You do not need to take nor submit GRE scores with your Fall 2022 application to be considered for admission into the program.**

The following is included for informational purposes only. As noted above, the GRE requirement has been waived for Fall 2022 applicants:
The GRE test scores are required for students planning to apply to our program. We cannot waive this requirement even when the applicant has completed an advanced degree at another college or university in the United States.
Please note that:
  • We cannot accept GMAT, LSAT, or MCAT scores in place of the GREs.
  • We do not require applicant file scores from any of the various GRE (subject) tests available.
  • GRE test results are not valid for more than five years.
For further information about this requirement, please see:




All graduate students, except those who have earned an undergraduate degree from an institution at which English was the sole language of instruction according to the World Health Education Database, are required to demonstrate oral English proficiency before they admitted to a UCI graduate program and are appointed to Teaching Assistant or Teaching Associate titles. For Teaching Assistant and Associate positions, the aforementioned exception will apply only when the undergraduate degree has been earned within five years prior to admission to a graduate program at UCI. Please read the full policy on English proficiency for graduate admissions and how to search for your institution in the database on the on the UCI Graduate Division website. The English proficiency requirement for TAs can be found here.



The current financial support package offered to students admitted into our program is for five years - fifteen quarters - of enrollment contingent on satisfactory academic standing and progress. Satisfactory progress in the department is evaluated based on acceptable completion of course work, timely completion of program examination requirements, acceptable progress in research and teaching as determined by your program faculty, and adherence to UCI's student conduct code.
This guaranteed support takes the form of a teaching assistantship, a research assistantship, or a fellowship (internal or extramural). Tuition, most associated educational fees, and graduate student health insurance (UC-SHIP) are covered as a benefit of employment for students holding teaching assistantships or research assistantships, and paid by the School during fellowship quarters.
An additional fee ("local fees") is assessed on all students each quarter. It covers on-campus, student-funded services - i.e., Associate Graduate Students, Student Center, Bren Events Center, Recreation Center - and is a quarterly out-of-pocket expense for the student. For 2021-22, this fee is approximately $161.21 per quarter. See:


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