Degree Information

UC Irvine offers a Master of Arts in Social Sciences with a concentration in Medicine, Science, and Technology Studies (known as the M.A. in MSTS). This M.A. concentration is housed in the Department of Anthropology and prepares students to respond to the significant and rapidly changing impact of medicine and technology upon economies and societies around the world. The degree is designed to provide students with skills that can be applied to future careers in a variety of venues, including academia, medicine or public health, the nonprofit sector, and technology industries.

In the one-year M.A. in MSTS program, students take three courses per quarter for a total of nine courses (36 units). Students admitted for Fall 2014 will form the program's first cohort and will be enrolled in courses with current Ph.D. and possibly B.A. students.

The M.A. in MSTS is the only terminal M.A. degree offered by the Department of Anthropology. Although the degree will provide students with skills they can use in future academic study, completion of the M.A. in MSTS does not guarantee admission into the Ph.D. program.

Deadlines and When to Apply

New M.A. in MSTS students are admitted to the program for the Fall quarter only. Accordingly, we encourage all prospective graduate students to begin the application process early to ensure ample time for the collection of all required materials.

To apply, click here: Apply Now.

The UCI campus uses a fully-online graduate application program, Slate. All applications and supplemental application materials are to be sent through Slate, by the applicant. Letters of recommendation will be submitted by recommenders through the application portal.

Further information on the application process and graduate study at UCI is available at the Social Sciences Graduate Affairs Office or by email at

Applications will be accepted beginning September 15. Applications filed and completed before March 1 will be reviewed for admissions.

Current UCI doctoral students who wish to earn the M.A. in MSTS in addition to a doctoral degree do not need to apply separately. For more information , see Concurrent Enrollment.

Application Requirements and Procedures

Successful applicants to the M.A. in MSTS program should have a B.A. or B.S. degree and will have demonstrated strong intellectual capabilities and creativity in their undergraduate careers. The minimum undergraduate GPA requirement for admission is 3.0 on a four-point scale (or equivalent). However, most competitive applicants typically report a GPA at or above 3.5.

Applicants are not required to have prior training in anthropology or any field of medicine, science, and technology, although successful applicants are likely to have experience in one or more of these areas.

Application Procedures:

You'll be required to submit all supplemental application materials electronically, direct through the on-line application you will create in the campus application system, Slate.

* letters of recommendation (3),
* GRE scores, See GRE and TOEFL/IELTS below
* academic statement of purpose and personal history statement,
Statement of Purpose (1-3 pages). The statement of purpose is one of the most important parts of the application and is usually the first thing read by members of the admissions committee. In general, it should answer questions such as the following (these are suggestions, not requirements): Why are you interested in the MSTS program? What types of issues do you intend to study? What are your short-term and long-term academic, professional, and career goals and how will the MSTS program help you achieve them? What relevant academic background or other experience do you bring to the program?
The online application system provides an option for you to submit a "Personal History Statement." This Personal History Statement, separate from the Statement of Purpose, is required if you wish to be considered for an application fee waiver. If you do not wish to file a separate Personal History Statement, enter "See Statement of Purpose" in the box in the online application in which the Personal History Statement would normally be entered.
* transcripts,
We require only a single transcript from each school attended, uploaded by the applicant. We are no longer able to accept paper documents through the mail, or to upload electronic supplemental materials on the applicant's behalf.
Unofficial transcripts are acceptable for admission consideration. All admission offers will be provisional. Those who are offered and accept admission and financial support will then be required to submit official documents before the start of the Fall 2019 term, to clear the provisional admission status.
* writing sample
Only one writing sample should be provided. Although there are no mandatory length requirements for the writing sample, they are typically between 8,000-10,000 words.


Current UCI doctoral students who wish to earn the M.A. in MSTS in addition to a Ph.D. or other professional degree do not need to apply for separate admission. For more information, see Concurrent Enrollment.


Costs and Financial Aid

Tuition and Fees

The University of California's current fee and tuition rates are published online.

United States citizens and permanent residents who relocate to California from other states may apply for legal residency here, following one year of continuous residence (although the M.A. in MSTS is only a one-year program). The required "procedures of intent" are outlined here:

Financial Support

Most Master's students are self-funded. Financial assistance based on need (loans, primarily) is available to qualifying student applicants through UCI Financial Aid & Scholarships. Subject to limited availability, M.A. in MSTS students may apply for part-time Teaching Assistant positions.

All students applying for need-based financial aid are required to file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

International students who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents are not eligible to apply for federal need-based financial aid.

Further information on assistantships and funding resources can be found here.


Graduate Record Exam (GRE)

The GRE General Test is required of all applicants for the M.A. in MSTS program. We cannot waive this requirement, even when the applicant has completed an advanced degree at another college or university in the United States.

We cannot accept GMAT, LSAT, or MCAT scores in place of the GREs. We do not require that applicants file scores from any of the various GRE (subject) tests available.

GRE test results are valid for only five years.

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

The internet-based TOEFL(-ibT) is required of all international applicants except citizens of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, and the United Kingdom. The test is also required of US permanent residents who did not attend four full years and graduate high school in the United States.

A minimum overall score of 550 on the paper-based test or 80/120 on the TOEFL(-ibT) is required for admission, while a minimum sub-score of 26/30 on the Speaking component of the test is needed to qualify for Teaching Assistant positions. We cannot waive these minimum score requirements under any circumstances. Neither can we waive the requirement for current TOEFL or IELTS scores.

We can accept current IELTS (International English Language Testing System) scores as an alternative to the TOEFL-ibT, in which case a minimum 7/10 (overall) is required for admission, and 8/10 (Speaking component) for consideration for Teaching Assistant positions.

TOEFL-ibt or IELTS test scores are valid for only two years.



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