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General Degree Information

New students are assigned a faculty advisor and committee to assist in developing a curriculum to meet degree requirements. Although considerable flexibility exists, requirements usually include a core of required material that a student must master.


Master of Science (M.S.) and Master of Arts (M.A.)

Plan I:

  • Requires a minimum of 20 semester units of upper division and graduate courses
  • Completion of a thesis (begun at end of first year)

Plan II:

  • At least 24 semester units of upper division and graduate courses
  • A comprehensive examination administered by the faculty

 


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Designed to prepare students for creative activity and original research, a doctoral degree is awarded in recognition of a student's knowledge of a broad field of learning and for distinguished accomplishment in that field through an original contribution of significant knowledge. There are no university unit requirements for the degree, though individual programs may set specific course requirements. Candidacy for a Ph.D. from UC Merced requires:

  • Successfully complete the Qualifying Exam
  • Maintain a minimum grade-point average of 3.0
  • Receive incomplete grades in no more than two courses
  • Fulfill any language requirement associated with the program

At least four semesters of academic residence at UC Merced is required for all doctoral degrees.