graduate admissions

Dear Prospective Applicant,

Thank you for your interest in graduate studies in the Department of Mathematics at UCLA. Applications are accepted for Fall quarter matriculation only. The application deadline is December 15. Application review process begins in late December; to ensure full consideration, applications should be complete, with all supporting material submitted, by that time. Please note that admissions to the M.A. and M.A.T. programs has been suspended indefinitely, so if you’re interested in doing graduate work in our department you must apply for admission to the Ph.D. program.

You must submit the UCLA Graduate Admissions Application (see http://www.gdnet.ucla.edu/gasaa/admissions/applicat.htm) You must submit also the Application Fee for the UCLA Graduate Admissions Application. Instructions for this payment are given online. As part of the Graduate Division Application, you will be required to submit:

  • Transcripts (scans and originals)
  • Statement of purpose
  • Letters of Recommendation (see online UCLA application)
  • List of Mathematics Courses taken
  • Applicants whose native language is not English must take the TOEFL exam and submit their TOEFL score.

Each applicant must select an area (pure or applied) and a field of interest as part of the application. The two areas have slightly different course requirements but both allow for flexibility to take many combinations of courses and qualifying exams throughout the department. Students can ask to switch areas or fields after starting the program if their interests change.

Transcripts (and TOEFL scores, if required) should be mailed to:

Graduate Advisor
UCLA Mathematics Department
520 Portola Plaza
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1555

Admissions Requirements

The minimum Department requirements for applicants, in addition to the minimum University requirements, are:

  1. A bachelor’s degree or its equivalent, to be completed by the time of matriculation, with a minimum B (3.0 on a 4.0 scale) GPA in undergraduate junior/senior years and in post baccalaureate work.                                                                                Applicants for the PhD program must have a 3.5 GPA in upper division math courses.
  2. Prospective students do not need to have an undergraduate mathematics major, but must complete at least 12-quarter, or 8-semester courses in substantial upper division mathematics. Comparable Upper Division Courses at UCLA:

    • Algebra 110AB: Ring of integers, integral domains, fields, polynomial domains, unique factorization. Groups, structure of finite groups.
    • Linear Algebra 115AH: Abstract vector spaces, linear transformations, and matrices; determinants; inner product spaces; eigenvector theory.
    • Analysis 131ABH: Rigorous introduction to foundations of real analysis; real numbers, point set topology in Euclidean space, functions, continuity. Derivatives, Riemann integral, sequences and series of functions, power series, Fourier series.
    • Differential Geometry 120A: Curves in 3-space, Frenet formulas, surfaces in 3-space, normal curvature. Gaussian curvature. Congruence of curves and surfaces. Intrinsic geometry of surfaces, isometrics, geodesics, Gauss/Bonnet theorem.
    • Ordinary Differential Equations 135AB: Systems of differential equations; linear systems with constant coefficients, analytic coefficients, periodic coefficients, and linear systems with regular singular points; existence and uniqueness results; linear boundary and eigenvalue problems; two-dimensional autonomous systems, phase/plane analysis, stability and asymptotic behavior of solutions.
    • Applied Numerical Methods 151AB: Introduction to numerical methods with emphasis on algorithms, analysis of algorithms, and computer implementation issues. Solution of non-linear equations, numerical differentiation, integration, and interpolation. Numerical solution of differential equations.
  3. Three letters of recommendation with preferably all, but always at least 2, from mathematicians who are familiar with the student’s work.
  4. The GRE General and Math Subject tests. Students who wish to apply for admission to our graduate program for the 2021-2022 academic year are not required to take the GRE or submit a GRE score report as part of their application package. However, students may voluntarily submit GRE test scores and they will be reviewed as part of the holistic application consideration. The applications with GRE scores will not be given greater weight than those that do not include scores.

A General Recommendation:

The UCLA Mathematics Department encourages students to change their educational institution between their Bachelor and PhD degrees to broaden their horizons. In particular, no admissions advantage is given to UCLA undergraduates.

international students

Dear Prospective Applicant,

Thank you for your interest in graduate studies in the Department of Mathematics at UCLA. Applications are accepted for the Fall quarter only. The application deadline is December 15. The application review process begins late December; please ensure that all supporting documents, including reference letters and test scores, are received by that time. Please read all the information very carefully. In addition to the requirements below, return to Graduate Admissions for complete details.

Please note: THE UCLA Graduate Admissions Application fee is MANDATORY!! If the application fee is not paid, the UCLA Admissions Office cannot process the application.

Please note: DO NOT send publications.

Financial Support: International students are supported through a mix of fellowships, research assistantships, and teaching assistantships. Support is normally guaranteed for four years. A 5th year of support is usually provided if the student is in good standing and advanced to candidacy. Guaranteed support normally provides income that is enough for living expenses (exact amounts vary from year to year), and in addition provides full registration fees, health insurance, and non-resident tuition. All applicants are automatically considered for this financial support; no separate application is required. Students who have access to other means of support, for example scholarships from their own governments or international organizations, should apply for those separately.

Students whose first language is not English must pass UCLA’s “Test of Oral Proficiency” (TOP) before they can become teaching assistants at UCLA. Offers of support for international students are conditioned on passing this exam within the first year.

Required Tests

  • GRE: General and Math Subject Tests (Not required for 2021-2022)
  • TOEFL: Minimum score 560 paper test (600 is recommended) or a score of 220 on the computer-based test
  • TOP (Test of Oral Proficiency):  Minimum score of 6.4 is a provisional pass permitting the student to TA.

frequently asked questions

Thank you for your interest in graduate studies in the Department of Mathematics at UCLA. Applications are accepted for the fall quarter only. The application deadline is December 15. The application review process begins late December; please ensure that all supporting documents, including reference letters and test scores, are received by that time. Please return to Graduate Admissions for more detailed information or email gradapps@math.ucla.edu for very specific questions.

The on-line University application must be submitted by December 15. We will accept scores, letters and other materials after the December 15th deadline, but your application package will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed if we do not have all materials by the end of the first week in January.

Not really.  Three letters are sufficient for the review committee to get a sense of your abilities and strengths. 

International applicants that have received a Bachelor’s degree or higher from a university located in the United States, or from another country in which English is both the spoken language and the medium of instruction are exempted from the TOEFL.  Please include this information in your application package.

It is University policy that you score at least a 560 on the pencil and paper test, 220 on the electronic test, or 87 on the iBT.

Students who wish to apply for admission to our graduate program for the 2021-2022 academic year are not required to take the GRE or submit a GRE score report as part of their application package. However, students may voluntarily submit GRE test scores and they will be reviewed as part of the holistic application consideration. The applications with GRE scores will not be given greater weight than those that do not include scores. 

You should apply for the program that best suits you, but we do occasionally consider candidates who fall short of a Ph.D. admission for the Master’s.  This is not automatic and must be requested at the time of application.  Keep in mind that the Master’s is usually a terminal degree and not a first step into the PhD. program.

 

Be aware that when we talk about a successful applicant, numbers are only one part of the total package. That being said; the minimum GPA is 3.5 for a PhD and 3.2 for a Master’s, and although there is no minimum GRE, you must keep in mind that admission is very competitive and the higher your score, the better.  On the average, those we offer admission to have GRE subject scores in or above the 80th percentile. Our GPA range is from about 3.6 to 4.0, though again there can be exceptions. Keep in mind that we look at the entire package and although we have a minimum, the average is higher. Also, there is no score at any level, which insures admission.

 

The Statement is your opportunity to explain your reasons for pursuing graduate study in mathematics, and to let us get a sense of who you are.  You may mention any relevant facts about your education or experience with mathematics that are not apparent in the other materials you submit.  You might want to note what kind of mathematics you find interesting and wish to pursue in graduate school, and what you plan to do after obtaining a Ph.D. It may include information about your background, interests, or career goals, and how UCLA might help you meet those career and educational goals.  There is no specific length, but one or two pages are typical.

Your application will be accepted if we receive your scores by the end of the first week in January.

Admission decisions are based on an applicant’s entire package.  Weaknesses in one area may be offset by strengths in another. The committee weighs many factors in addition to GPAs.  These may include the breadth of your undergraduate courses, your letters of recommendation, statement of purpose and GRE subject score.

You may apply for admission to our program before your actual degree date as long as you have your Bachelor degree by the fall enrollment date.

The UCLA code is 4837 and the Mathematics department code is 0703.

One of the most important things you can do is to get to know your professors. You want to have letters of recommendation that tell us knowledgeably and personally about your qualifications and abilities. Your letters of recommendation should attest to the fact that you have the potential and mathematical background to be a research mathematician. It is already expected that all applicants to UCLA have a solid preparation in undergraduate math, with strong grades and GRE scores, that allows them at a minimum to pass our Basic Qualifying Exam in their first year. What we would also like to see in addition is that you have potential for advanced mathematical research. This can be demonstrated through courses that are heavy in proof oriented math, honors and graduate courses, a senior research project, a senior thesis, or a summer REU program.

 

You will receive an official letter by the first week of March.