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Graduate Financial

[ graduate degrees offered | division of graduate education and postdoctoral affairs | general requirements for higher degrees | admission ]


Tuition and Fees

Tuition and fees are subject to change without notice. For updated information regarding tuition and fees, see the Registration Fees website.

All receipts for payments made to the cashier, whatever their nature, should be carefully preserved. Not only do they constitute evidence that financial obligations have been discharged, but they may be required to support a claim that certain documents or petitions have been filed.

Tuition and fees for graduate students approved for enrollment in a half-time program (not to exceed six units) may be reduced by one-half of tuition and one-half of nonresident supplemental tuition for nonresidents. Students who petition and are approved for in absentia study will receive a waiver of 85 percent of the tuition cost.

California Residency and Nonresident Supplemental Tuition

Each new student entering UC San Diego is required to submit a Statement of Legal Residence to the Office of the Registrar. No nonresident supplemental tuition is charged to students classified as residents of California. Nonresidents, however, are required to pay quarterly nonresident supplemental tuition.

For a complete statement covering California residence requirements, determination of residence for nonresident supplemental tuition purposes, and/or recognized exceptions, read online about residence for tuition purposes. Additional information may be obtained from the Campus Residence Deputy, at No other university personnel are authorized to supply information relative to residence requirements for nonresident supplemental tuition purposes. Students seeking to establish California residency for nonresident supplemental tuition purposes are advised to review the requirements and deadlines. Adherence to the published deadlines is the responsibility of each student and is essential. Exceptions to waive or extend deadlines are not considered.

To the extent funds are available, subject to change, waiver of nonresident supplemental tuition may be granted to spouses and dependent, unmarried children under age twenty-one of university faculty members who are qualified for membership in the Academic Senate. Inquiries should be directed to the Office of the Registrar or the Academic Senate Office.

University Student Services Fee

The university student services fee is a quarterly fee required of all registered students, and it must be paid at the time of the student’s registration. This fee is for services that benefit the student and are complementary to, but not part of, the regular instructional programs of the university. No part of this fee is refunded to students who do not make use of these services; however, students who petition and are approved for in absentia study will receive a waiver of 85 percent of the student services fee. Exemption from this fee may be granted to surviving children of certain deceased California fire fighters or police officers. Students who believe they may qualify for an exemption on this basis must consult with the Financial Aid Office, Student Services Center (SSC), Third Floor North, for a ruling.

Student Health Services and Insurance Plans

The Student Health Service (SHS) is a nationally accredited health care facility providing primary health care for no or minimal charge during the academic year for all students who pay the university registration fee. Students with the University of California Student Health Insurance Plan (UC SHIP) in the spring have access to the SHS during the summer at no additional charge. Students without UC SHIP may be seen in the summer for a modest fee. Additional information on the wide variety of services available at SHS is available via the web at

SHS provides primary health care to all students with UC SHIP. Access to UC SHIP benefits requires written SHS referral except in cases of emergency care or care 150 miles out of the UC San Diego area.

The Student Health Insurance Program (SHIP)

UC SHIP is a mandatory year-round insurance plan for graduate and professional students unless a waiver has been granted. (See Waivers.) Students must be enrolled in UC SHIP for the spring quarter in order to retain coverage through summer. Three quarterly payments will provide year-round coverage under UC SHIP. The spring quarter premium extends insurance coverage through the summer quarter. Benefits and additional information may be viewed at the website

Premium payment for UC SHIP is due with the payment of the registration fee. Premiums for students holding graduate academic appointment titles for a full academic term at 25 percent time or greater will be paid directly by the university. Premiums for some students holding fellowships and training grants are also paid directly. Loans to cover premiums may be available for students who receive need-based financial assistance.

For first-year students arriving on campus prior to the start of the academic calendar year, it is highly recommended that the student review current insurance status and purchase short-term coverage if necessary. Insurance information may be obtained by calling the insurance counselor at (858) 534-2124.


No premium refunds are permitted, except when a student withdraws on or prior to the first day of classes, in which case a full refund of the premium will be made and coverage for that quarter will be canceled effective from the first day of the quarter. If an insured enters the armed forces, a pro-rata refund of premium paid will be made upon request. Tuition and fee refund will be subject to the refund schedule. (See Schedule of Refunds.) That refund schedule is effective beginning on the first day of the quarter and counts all calendar days. Students cannot expect exceptions to this schedule, regardless of the circumstances of the leave of absence/withdrawal request.

Leave of Absence

A student is eligible to be enrolled in UC SHIP for a lifetime total of two academic quarters when on an approved academic leave of absence. A student on approved leave is responsible for his or her health insurance enrollment, premium payment, and Student Health Service fee payment. Enrollment in UC SHIP is through the Student Health Insurance Office.


Students already insured under a policy containing benefits equal to or better than UC SHIP may be eligible for UC SHIP waivers for up to one academic year. Documents required for a waiver are: 1) student’s written request, 2) proof of present insurance and premium payment to the end of the quarter, 3) a copy of the summary of insurance benefits, and 4) a copy of the insurance identification cards. Information on waiving UC SHIP can be found on the Waiving UC SHIP website: The insurance coordinator will communicate final decisions regarding waiver requests to the student.

Reduced Fee Enrollments

  1. Tuition was established as a required fee for all students beginning with the fall quarter 1970. It is used to cover a variety of educational costs as determined by the regents. Tuition may be reduced by one-half for students enrolled in six units or fewer. (See Part-Time Study, including Half-Time.)
  2. Eighty-five percent of the combined tuition and student services fee may be waived for graduate students whose research or study requires them to remain outside the state of California (or outside of the following counties within California: San Diego, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, Imperial, San Bernardino) for the entire quarter. Students must file a request for in absentia registration for this privilege. The reduction pertains to 85 percent of the combined tuition and student services fee only. A student must pay, in addition, all required fees including, but not limited to, the remaining tuition and student services fee, student center fee, recreation facility fee, health insurance fee, and nonresident supplemental tuition fee, if applicable.
  3. Graduate students approved for enrollment in a half-time program (not to exceed six units) are eligible for a reduction in fees of one-half tuition, and, if applicable, one-half of the nonresident supplemental tuition fee.
  4. A full-time employee who is not subject to nonresident supplemental tuition, who has worked full time for the university for at least six months prior to the latest date that registration will be accepted, and who meets the admission requirements of the university is eligible for two-thirds reduction of both the university student services fee and university tuition for up to nine units or three regular session university courses per quarter, whichever is greater. An employee so registered is ineligible for the services and facilities of the counseling center, recreation facilities, or the Student Health Services, other than those services to which the employee is regularly entitled (University of California Staff Personnel Policy 260.23). Authorization for this privilege is secured from the Staff Personnel Office for staff employees, or from the Academic Personnel Office for individuals on academic appointments.

Note: In accordance with Academic Senate regulations, no voting member of the San Diego Division of the Academic Senate shall be recommended for a higher degree from UC San Diego unless the dean of the Division of Graduate Education and Postdoctoral Affairs shall have certified that all requirements for that degree have been met prior to the appointment to a rank carrying the voting privilege.

Miscellaneous Fees and Fines

Graduate students should also be aware of the following charges:

Application fee for admission
Domestic $135
Petition for Readmission
Advancement to Candidacy for PhD
Filing Fee
Master’s Thesis submission fee

Financial Assistance

Several kinds of financial assistance are available to graduate students at UC San Diego. These include fellowships and traineeships; assistantships in teaching, language instruction, and research; scholarships in full or partial payment of tuition and/or fees; and loans. Further details about these awards/appointments may be obtained from departmental, group, or school offices.

Descriptions in this section deal entirely with awards administered directly by the university.

Applicants for financial assistance should note the following: “Pursuant to Section 7 of the Privacy Act of 1974, applicants for student financial aid or benefits are hereby notified that mandatory disclosure of their Social Security number is required by the University of California to verify the identity of each applicant. Social Security numbers are used in processing the data given in the financial aid application; in the awarding of funds; in the coordination of information with applications for federal, state, university, and private awards or benefits; and in the collection of funds and tracing of individuals who have borrowed funds from federal, state, university, or private loan programs.”

Fellowships and Traineeships

Regents fellowships, offered to students with excellent academic and research qualifications, may provide a stipend and/or tuition and fees and nonresident supplemental tuition, if applicable. These awards may be packaged with employment and/or additional fellowship. The amount of the support varies by department.

Additional fellowship stipends may be established by the department, group, or school and may vary in tenure from one to twelve months. Fellowships awarded for one, two, or three quarters may also provide tuition and fees and nonresident supplemental tuition, if applicable. US citizens and permanent residents are eligible for nonresident supplemental tuition fee payments only for their first three quarters at UC San Diego. Awardees must register for twelve units of upper-division and graduate-level work each quarter and must remain in good academic standing, as described under Standards of Scholarship in this catalog.

Fellows and trainees on twelve-month tenure are required to devote full time to graduate study and research during the summer as well as during the academic year. A brief resume of proposed summer graduate study or research, approved by the appropriate adviser, must be filed with the dean of the Division of Graduate Education and Postdoctoral Affairs before the end of the spring quarter preceding the summer portion of the fellowship or traineeship tenure.

Some fellowships and traineeships offer the opportunity to participate in teaching or research programs of the university.

The principal types of fellowships at UC San Diego are the following:

  1. Regents Fellowships
  2. Research Fellowships
  3. US Public Health Service Predoctoral Traineeships
  4. Tuition and Fee Payments

Graduate Student Academic Employment

Graduate students may be appointed by UC San Diego on a part-time basis as graduate student researchers (GSRs) and academic student employees (ASEs). ASEs include associates, readers, teaching assistants, and tutors. Graduate students enrolled full-time (twelve units or more) may be appointed up to 50 percent time (twenty hours/week) during the academic year and 100 percent time during the summer months, although most departments limit support to 50 percent time year-round. Students enrolled for less than full-time (one to eleven units) are eligible, at the discretion of the department, for 25 percent time appointments. Appointees must remain in good academic standing, as described under Standards of Scholarship. International graduate students who are nonnative speakers of English must be certified as having requisite language skills before they can serve as teaching assistants (UC San Diego Division of Graduate Education and Postdoctoral Affairs policy in compliance with Assembly Concurrent Resolution No. 41).

Graduate students appointed as associates, readers, teaching assistants, tutors, and graduate student researchers are represented by the UAW under collective bargaining agreements with the University of California. The collective bargaining agreements are available at

Graduate students appointed in a graduate academic title, or combination of titles, at 25 percent or more for a full quarter, and are within the time limits for support described earlier in this section, are eligible for a remission of tuition and fees.

Fee remission programs for associates, readers, teaching assistants, and tutors are outlined in the UAW BX contract. Fee remission programs for graduate student researchers are outlined in the UAW BR contract.

All graduate students who are US citizens and appointed as ASEs or GSRs or are employed by the university in other positions are required by the California Constitution to sign the State Oath of Allegiance. In addition, all graduate student appointees and employees are required by university policy to sign the university’s Patent Agreement. Copies of both documents may be obtained from each hiring department.

Note to Students Receiving Financial Support

The first billing statement will be sent to each enrolled student about one month prior to the start of each quarter. Tuition and fees and nonresident supplemental tuition awarded to pay registration fees will be credited to the graduate student’s account and appear on the statement as a payment or credit. Each award recipient and/or employee should carefully check the amounts listed on the statement against the graduate award letter and contact their academic home department Division of Graduate Education and Postdoctoral Affairs immediately if there is a discrepancy. Graduate students with partial tuition and fees and/or nonresident supplemental tuition awards will be required to pay the balance by the deadline to complete their registration.

Taxability of Awards

Students are advised to review available tax materials and make their own decisions about tax withholding, reporting of income, excluding income from taxation, and filing required tax forms. UC San Diego departmental and central administrative staff may not advise students on individual tax matters.

For more information, please see:

Application Procedures

Entering students. The online application form for graduate admissions may be used to apply for certain fellowships.

In order for an applicant to be considered for the ensuing academic year, all supporting materials must be received by the department application deadline. No assurance can be given that requests for fellowships can be processed after stated deadlines.

Continuing and returning students. Consult with academic home departments.

Award Notification

The awarding of fellowships for newly admitted students and similar awards for the following academic year should be announced not later than April 1. UC San Diego subscribes to the agreement of the Council of Graduate Schools of the United States, under which successful applicants for awards are given until April 15 to accept or decline such awards. An award accepted from one of the member universities may be resigned at any time through April 15. However, an acceptance given or left in force after that date commits the student not to accept another appointment without first obtaining formal release for that purpose.


See Financial Aid and Scholarships.

Time Limits for Graduate Student Support

For doctoral students, most financial support administered by UC San Diego (including fellowships, scholarships, and appointments but excluding loans) is restricted to students who are within their departmental support time limits (see Doctoral Time Limits and description of each department’s graduate program).

MFA and MIA students can be supported for a maximum of ten quarters. MA and MS students can be supported for a maximum of seven quarters.

Fellowships and Research Awards from Outside the University

In addition to fellowships, traineeships, and loans administered by the university, other types of graduate student support are available through federal agencies and private foundations. Students wishing to explore such sources of support for their studies at UC San Diego are urged to consult one of the many directories available in the reference section of Geisel Library, the fellowship listings provided via the following websites: Grants Select and the University of California’s research opportunity page, the Office of Research and Graduate Studies. Most application deadlines occur in the fall or early winter. Among the many organizations that award fellowships to students at UC San Diego are the Department of Defense, Department of Education, Ford Foundation, Hertz Foundation; Howard Hughes Medical Institute; Institute of International Education; National Aeronautics and Space Administration, National Science Foundation, and the Social Science Research Council. Additional application support is offered by the Division of Graduate Education and Postdoctoral Affairs and the graduate fellowship adviser.