Our Admissions Committee uses a holistic approach in evaluating each application.

Admissions Requirements

The Marine Biodiversity and Conservation Admissions Committee reviews all applications holistically and considers the following required items:

  • Statement of Purpose: In ~750 words, describe your interest in this field, demonstrated commitment to the ocean, and rationale for applying to the program. Please explain why you are applying to the MAS MBC Program and what you hope to achieve with this degree.
  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution of higher education with a preferred minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Resume/CV
  • Three (3) Letters of Recommendation
  • College Transcripts
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): for international applicants only, minimum score is 85 (iBT) or 550 (PBT), or 7 IELTS
    Note: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, UC San Diego will be accepting the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition test scores and IELTS Indicator test scores for the 2021-2022 academic cycle. Applicants that do not have in-person testing options may submit the home edition scores as an alternative. Additional details here.

  • The GRE is not required. You may submit GRE/GMAT results if you feel they will greatly strengthen your application
  • The application asks for preliminary Capstone ideas. Applications do not need to include an endorsement of a Capstone advisor and reaching out to faculty is not expected. 

Application Process

To begin the application, all students must create a UC San Diego account.
Under "Program Selector", indicate: 
Degree Type: Master of Advanced Studies
Program Interest: Marine Biodiversity and Conservation (SI83)
Term: Summer 2021

The application for the 2021-2022 cohort is now open!
Start and submit your application here:

The application includes an application fee of $120 for U.S. citizens and permanent residents, and $140 for international applicants that can be paid with a major credit card. Applicants may qualify for a fee waiver upon verification of need-based federal aid, financial hardship, U.S. Military Service, or graduate prep program participation.

If you have any questions regarding the application process, please contact us at:  

Researchers on stern deck of ship

Photo: Erik Jepsen

Application Timeline

Students apply in the Fall for a program start date the following June.

2021-2022 Cohort Dates:
Application Opens - September 9, 2020
Application Deadline - January 6, 2021
Decisions Released - Mid-February-March, 2021
Program Dates - June 2021-June 2022


Photo: Samantha Murray