Graduate Program Admissions Frequently Asked Questions

  • Does our department require the GRE test for admissions consideration?

    No, our department no longer requires the GRE test.

  • What is the graduate admissions application deadline for Fall 2025?

    The priority deadline for Fall 2025 is Friday, December 13. Shortly after the deadline, a group of faculty (the Graduate Studies Committee) will start to review the submitted applications. While all applications submitted after the priority deadline will also be reviewed, the majority of admitted applicants will be from those applications that were submitted on or before the priority deadline. With that said, if you’ve spoken with a potential Faculty Advisor and they have encouraged you to apply, please consider doing so, regardless of the deadline. If you have questions about this, please contact Dr. Jonathan Eacott, the Director of Graduate Studies at

  • How do I know if I should apply for the MA or PhD?

    If your long term goal is to pursue a doctoral agree, then we encourage you to apply for the PhD. We provide generous funding packages to our PhD students, but we do not fund the MA program. It is important to note that students who enter the PhD program after completing their bachelor’s degree will be given the opportunity to earn their MA in route to the PhD. If you have questions about this, please contact Alesha Jaennette, the Graduate Student Affairs Advisor at

  • Are applicants with MA degrees more likely to be admitted into the PhD program than applicants without an MA?

    No. Admissions into the Ph.D. program are based on the strength of the application in terms of 1) the strength and originality of their proposed research topic, 2) the availability of one or more faculty members with the expertise needed to support the proposed research topic, and 3) the potential of the applicant to succeed in graduate studies, as evidenced by the statement of purpose, GPA, the strength of writing sample, and support expressed in letters of recommendations. 

  • What materials besides letters of recommendation are required for graduate admissions consideration?

    We require that all applicants provide an electronic copy of the transcripts from all institutions attended at the time of application submission. The transcripts can be official PDFs provided by the institutions or scanned copies of official and unofficial transcripts. You can upload these documents in the ‘Additional Information’ section of the application, which is at the end of the section where your Personal History Statement and Statement of Purpose are collected. We can use these PDFs for admissions consideration, but if you are offered admission, you will then be required to provide sealed, official paper copies of all transcripts prior to being permitted to enroll as a student at UCR. If you are unable to upload these documents to the application for some reason, please submit them via email to, with “Graduate Application Materials” in the subject line.

  • How should I obtain letters of recommendation?

    The department requires three letters of recommendation that speak to your promise as a graduate student. The letters should ideally be written by professors who know your academic work and can address your academic qualities, especially in relation to the study of history. Once the application has been submitted, the letter writers receive an email prompting them to submit their letters via an electronic link. Please communicate the deadline to your letter writers; we encourage you also to follow up with your letter writers to remind them of your deadline.

  • Do we encourage applicants to reach out to faculty prior to or during the application process?

    While some programs discourage this, we encourage you to reach out to faculty who you are interested in potentially working with, in order to discuss the graduate program and start a dialogue about your research interests. The department’s decisions about whom to admit to the program often center on whether there are faculty members available whose expertise align with an applicant’s interests, so communicating with professors in advance of the application process is a good idea. However, while this step is advisable, it is not required for admissions consideration.

  • If I have questions about the program, funding, faculty, requirements, resources, opportunities, normative time to completion or any other questions, whom should I contact?

    The staff member that can answer these questions is Alesha Jaennette, the Graduate Student Affairs Advisor, at

  • What kind of funding does the department offer to graduate students upon admission?

    The base package provides a minimum of $34K in the first year, between fee/tuition coverage and stipend/salary funds. For the remaining years, students are provided with guaranteed Teaching Assistantships that come with a generous salary and a partial (~94%) fee/tuition waiver. Especially competitive applicants have the opportunity to be granted more generous funding and UCR also reviews funding offers provided to our top applicants from competing institutions and is sometimes able to match or beat said offers.

  • Does the department offer funding for graduate students beyond the initial admissions funding package?

    Yes! The department awards thousands of dollars to graduate students every year in order to help them fund the cost of their research and travel.

  • Are there funding opportunities outside of the department?

    Yes, there are many campus-wide funding opportunities, as well as training resources on how to apply for external funding opportunities. Our graduate students have been very successful in securing department, campus-wide and external funding!

  • How many students do you take each year?

    In the last several years we have brought in a starting class of approximately 10 graduate students.

  • What are graduate students in your department studying?

    Check out bios for our graduate students here.