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FAQ - Applying to Hispanic Studies

How do I apply?

Apply using the on-line application program called Grad SIS.  Through Grad SIS you will be able to apply and submit your supplemental documentation.

What is the deadline for admission?

For fall 2013 admission, the priority deadline to be considered for fullest funding consideration is December 10th. However, we will continue to accept applications after that date but there is a better chance for funding and admission the earlier you apply.

What supplemental documentation is submitted through Grad SIS?

  • Statement of purpose and personal history
  • Writing sample
  • Disclaimer statement and fee payment form
  • Application fee
  • 3 Letters of recommendation (on official letterhead)
  • GRE score(s)
  • TOEFL score(s) or ELTS score(s) (if applicable)
  • International Student, confidential financial statement (if applicable)

What supplemental documentation will need to be mailed in and what is the mailing address?

  • 2 official sealed transcripts from all institutions you have attended.  Transcripts should also be translated into English if you have attended a foreign institution.
  • If you have graduated from a foreign institution, degree certificates are required in both the original language and English translation.
  • Letters of recommendation can also be mailed in if the recommender prefers.  If the recommender chooses to mail in their recommendation, their signature over the seal of the letter is required. We strongly recommend that your references submit letters through GradSIS as paper copies may delay your application decision significantly.
  • Confidential financial statement, if international and able to self-support or receiving funds from government sponsorship.
  • UC Riverside
    Hispanic Studies Department
    Attn: Nicole Bogner
    900 University Ave., HMNSS 2401
    Riverside, CA 92521

What are the minimum scores accepted?

  • GPA: 3.0
  • GRE: 1100 (taken prior to August 1, 2011); 290-300 (taken after August 1, 2011)
  • TOEFL (paper based): 550
  • TOEFL (computer based): 213
  • TOEFL (internet based): 80
  • IELTS:  Minimum overall band score of 7 with no individual section score less than 6

Where can I send my test scores?

  • Institution Code:  4839
  • GRE Department Code: 2608
  • TOEFL Department Code: 23

What can delay the processing of my application?

  • Not turning in all required documents by the deadline.
  • Letters of recommendation that are mailed in.  Additionally, any recommender e-mail address that is not a university e-mail address will greatly delay your application as the recommender must be contacted to verify a letter was written.  Please make sure a university e-mail address is given if you are listing a faculty member as a recommender.
  • Not having 2 official sealed transcripts from each institution you attended.  Foreign transcripts not translated into English can also cause a delay.

I checked GradSIS and my materials received status has not been updated.

Please allow at least 10 business days for your materials received status to be updated for documents that are mailed in.  Different components of your application are reviewed separately and updated separately as well which is why you may see various update times.  The University closes for two weeks at the end of December which can delay status updates until staff return in January. 

What if I do not meet the minimum requirements for test scores or GPA? Should I apply anyway?

The Admissions Committee will be reviewing an applicant's overall file and taking many different factors into consideration. However, keep in mind that admission with fellowship is a very competitive process.

Do I have to take the TOEFL?

International students, permanent residents, and even U.S. citizens whose native language is not English and who do not have a bachelor's or postgraduate degree from an institution where English is the exclusive language of instruction are required to complete the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or IELTS.

How do I obtain an application fee waiver?

There is currently no fee waiver available for applicants.

What forms of payment are accepted for the application fee?

The online application system, GradSIS allows you to pay by credit card.  If you cannot pay by credit card, please contact Graduate Division for alternate forms of payment: (951) 827-3313.

Is an M.A. degree a prerequisite for the program?

No, applicants with a bachelor’s degree will be considered.

How are students funded in the graduate program?

Most of our students, both domestic and international receive fellowships and TA appointments. Some students receive dissertation fellowships on a competitive basis.

Is funding available in summer?

Our students have received summer grants, on a competitive basis, from our Graduate Division and UC MEXUS. More significantly, we have a very good record in being able to support our graduate students with teaching assistantships in the summer.

I am self-supported how much money will I need?

Please contact the Graduate Division for the numbers.

I have missed the deadline for fall acceptance, do you take applications for winter or spring admission?

Yes, we accept applications for winter or spring admission. However, it is more likely to be considered for fellowships for the fall application. Refer to Graduate Division regarding deadlines for admission.

Do you have any advice to increase my chances of being accepted?

Be specific in your personal statement, what are you interested in, emphasize any synergisms between your experience and our current studies. Also, make sure your application is complete, i.e. pay your application fee, make sure your recommendation letter writers send in letters on time, and that original transcripts are sent. Make sure that your GRE and TOEFL or ELTS (if applicable) scores are recent. Finally, make sure you list a valid email address on the application, and keep the address current. Notify us of any changes.

What is the normative time to degree?

For an M.A. the normative time to degree is 6 quarters. For Ph.D. it is five years for those without an M.A.

How does the visa application process work?

Check the International Service Center for visa and traveling information.

I am in the U.S, can I come and visit the campus?

Please contact the department with your interest.

Does UCR guarantee housing for graduate students?

Unfortunately we do not guarantee housing at this time. However, housing is offered both on and off campus. Please visit the Housing Services website for more information.

I am taking/have taken some of your core courses at my institution, can the credits be transferred?

Transfer of credit is done on a case-by-case basis. In general, we only transfer credits taken at US institutions. Because all graduate students receiving financial support are required to maintain a GPA of 3.5 or higher, the transferred units are expected to meet this criterion. Units can only be transferred if the degree has not been earned at that institution. If it has, then the student may be eligible for a course waiver.

I already have a master’s degree, at what stage do I enter the program?

We will have to review your transcripts (BA & MA) before knowing exactly at what stage you would be recommended to enter. It depends on the total coursework and training, we deal with each case individually.