Additional Information

Policies and Procedures (12-page PDF)

To Apply

BEST 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 BEST faculty member's research area, so we encourage interested students to begin the application process by contacting the BEST chair or any BEST faculty whose research interests them.

All applicants should take the GRE general test (subject test optional). 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. 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.

For more information on the application process, or to submit an online application, please see the UC Merced Graduate Division website.


All students pursuing Ph.D. degrees in the BEST emphasis 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.

Contact Us

Graduate Admissions:
Phone: (209) 228-4723
Graduate Funding:
Phone: (209) 228-4622
Mailing Address:
University of California, Merced
ATTN: Graduate Division
5200 N. Lake Road, Ste KL 227
Merced, CA 95343


University of California, Merced
The first new American research
university in the 21st century, with a
mission of research, teaching and service.
University of California, Merced
5200 North Lake Road
Merced, CA 95343
T: (209) 228-4400
University of California
Go to top