We are pleased to announce a new and exciting Ph.D. program in global studies at UC Irvine. This will be the second such doctoral program within the University of California system.

The Ph.D. program in global studies will provide a critical transdisciplinary degree that will stand out from other programs for its cutting-edge curriculum, faculty, and embracing of scholarship from across the social sciences and humanities engaging multiple theoretical perspectives and methodologies. UCI’s program will be truly unique for its foregrounding the importance of engaging global south scholarship and non-western epistemologies that broaden the base of knowledge production and bring new perspectives to bear on the pressing global issues impacting us all.


All applicants for the PhD programs must apply online using the UCI Online Application for Graduate Admissions (https://apply.grad.uci.edu/apply/).


Applications will be accepted beginning September 1, 2020

The deadline to apply is December 1, 2020.

For full consideration, applications must be received by the December 1st deadline. Although applications received after the deadline may be considered, we cannot guarantee that they can be reviewed.

Prospective students must hold a bachelor’s degree from a recognized institution with degree standards equivalent to those of the University of California. The degree need not be in Global Studies; degrees in the social sciences, behavioral sciences and humanities may also be accepted.

The following items are required as part of the graduate application:

  • Application Fee: US $120 (for US Citizens and Permanent Residents); US $140 (for international applicants)
  • Application Fee Waivers are available to eligible candidates and determined in the campus Graduate Division: https://grad.uci.edu/admissions/applying-to-uci/fee-waivers.php
  • Current CV or Resume (include your academic achievements)
  • Statement of Purpose - 1200 word maximum (global issues that interest you most, the kinds of issues you are interested in, the areas of academic research you’d like to work in, how your research relates to your career goals, why the Global Studies program makes sense for you)
  • Personal History Statement - 1200 word maximum (what drives you, the obstacles you have faced, how you have overcome adversity and thrived, lessons you’ve learned, things you have achieved as a result)
  • One (1) Writing Sample. 20 pages is the maximum length. Can be an excerpt from a longer piece.
  • GRE scores (see below)* please choose institution code 4859
  • TOEFL or IELTS (if applicable - see below)* please choose institution code 4859
  • Three (3) Letters of Recommendation uploaded by recommenders into the application portal
  • Transcripts - undergraduate and graduate (if applicable). Official documents are required for each school attended following high school. Transcripts are to be uploaded by the applicant into the application portal.

All application materials are to be submitted electronically as part of the online application.

Graduate Record Exam (GRE)

The GRE General Test is required of all applicants for PhD admission. We cannot waive this requirement; even when the applicant has completed an advanced degree at another college or university in the United States.

We cannot accept GMAT, LSAT, or MCAT scores in place of the GREs. We do not require that applicants file scores from any of the various GRE (subject) tests available. GRE scores can be no older than five years.

UC Irvine institution Code: 4859

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

The internet-based TOEFL(-ibT) is required of all international applicants except citizens of primarily English-speaking countries (principally, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, and the United Kingdom). The test is also required of international applicants who are US permanent residents who did not graduate from high school in the United States after attending for four full years. 

We cannot waive this requirement for admission and financial support consideration even for those who hold or are completing an undergraduate or advanced degree in the United States.

 Note: For financial support consideration, the following minimum scores are required:

  • 26/30 on the speaking component of the TOEFL-ibT; or
  • 8/9 on the Speaking module of the IELTS exam.

We can accept current IELTS (International English Language Testing System) scores as an alternative to the TOEFL-ibT, in which case a minimum 7/9 (overall, no individual module score under 6) is required for admission, and a minimum 8/9 (Speaking component) for financial support consideration.

TOEFL-ibt or IELTS test scores can be no older than 2 years. We cannot waive the requirement for current TOEFL or IELTS scores.

UC Irvine institution Code: 4859


If you have further questions, please visit the School of Social Science's FAQ Page or contact the Graduate Admissions Office at socsci.gradinfo@uci.edu or (949) 824-7352.



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