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Prospective Students FAQ

What’s special about going to UC Merced for grad school?   

As a young university, you have the opportunity to help grow our research program! You can help shape new research directions, lead a seminar series, or develop new ways to build community in our graduate program. Our faculty do cutting edge research, but with smaller research groups so that you can get individualized mentoring and training.   Our location ( within a couple hours of Yosemite National Park, the Bay Area, and the Santa Cruz and Monterey Bay Peninsula) allows for fun weekend get aways within California, while having a more affordable cost of living compared to other UC campuses.

Multiple research groups look interesting! Can I do a rotation? 

Yes! Our faculty are happy to work with you to design a plan for you to spend time in multiple research groups to help you find the best fit for you. 

Do all grad students get a teaching assistant (TA) position? 

All graduate students in good standing have a funding guarantee, which is either through a TA position or a researcher position (e.g. with funding from your advisor).  We are helping to train a lot of undergraduates, so there are many TA positions available.  Most students TA in their first year of grad school and after that are supported by a mix of TA positions and grant funding.


Please fill out this form if you wish to be contacted about the Chemistry Ph.D. program (we plan to organize a webinar and Q&A session). If you have specific questions about our program, please contact the graduate chair Professor Michael Findlater (

Applications and instructions can be found on the UC Merced Graduate Division site.