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Prospective Applicants' Frequently Asked Questions

General Application Questions


Test Scores

Recommendation Letters

  • My recommenders prefer to submit hard copy letters or they are unable to use the online letter of recommendation process; can they submit a paper letter of recommendation? Answer:  We strongly advise that you submit all letters of recommendations online through the UCSD Graduate Application for Admission website. We do not accept paper-based letters of recommendations. The admissions committee will be looking solely at the information that you provide online. Paper-based letters may not be taken into consideration at the time that your application is assessed.
  • My recommender has not received an email requesting a letter. What should I do? Answer:  To monitor the progress of your online letters go to the Application Management Page of the on-line application website and Click on the "Manage Recommendations" button. Here you can determine which letters have been received. From this site you can also send an e-mail reminder to recommenders.
    If a recommender is not responding to your request you should check the e-mail address for accuracy and contact the recommender by telephone.
    In the event that you need to change a recommender's e-mail address, you must re-enter the recommender information in the additional spaces provided. It is not possible to change the e-mail address of the original entry.
  • Can I add or change my recommenders after I have submitted my online application? Answer:  You can add additional or replacement recommenders after you have submitted your online application by visiting the "Manage Recommendations" section found within the Application Management page of the online application. You cannot revoke a recommendation letter once it has been submitted by the recommender. In the event that you need to change a recommender's email address, you must re-enter the recommender's information in the additional spaces provided. It is not possible to change the email address of the original entry.
  • I only have two letters of recommendation, will my application be considered? Answer: Your application will be considered based on all of the information that you submit by the application deadline. However, you may be disadvantaged if you submit an application with less than three letters of recommendation.
  • Should I wait to submit my application until all letters of recommendation are complete? Answer: No. Submit your application as soon as you have completed it. Your letters of recommendation will be attached to your application when they arrive. Once you have submitted your application you may continue to monitor the status of your online recommendations by visiting the "Manage Recommendations" section of the online application. All application materials, including letters of recommendation, must be submitted by the application deadline.
  • Do you accept professional letters of recommendation? Answer: Academic references are always preferred, since they will best indicate your ability to succeed in graduate school. However, professional recommendations will also be accepted, if these are all that you can reasonably obtain
  • Do you accept recommendation letters after the deadline? Answer:  If you have listed a recommender on your application prior to submission we will accept the letter after the deadline, however, we cannot guarantee the letters will be reviewed with your application. Faculty will begin reviewing applications immediately after the deadline and it is possible your application may be reviewed prior to the receipt of your letters of recommendation which may put you at a disadvantage.

Re-Application Process

Non-UCSD Students

Newly Admitted UCSD Students


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