The Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences offers a interdepartmental program leading to a PhD in Pharmacological Sciences. Students can choose from one of three tracks within the program: Pharmaceutical Sciences, Pharmacology or Medicinal Chemistry.

The current areas of study in the Pharmaceutical Sciences Department include:

Sample Curriculum

The Pharmacological Sciences PhD program is flexible and tailored to the needs of each individual student. Students are actively engaged in research throughout their training: In the first year, laboratory rotations ensure exposure to a variety of techniques and research problems. By the end of their first year students have worked with several faculty members and selected a lab to join. During their third year, students are considered for advancement to PhD candidacy on the basis of academic standing, laboratory performance, and a qualifying examination. After advancement to candidacy, students devote their time to completion of an original research dissertation.

CLICK HERE to view the sample curriculum for the Pharmaceutical Sciences Track.

CLICK HERE to view the sample curriculum for the Pharmacology Track.

CLICK HERE to view the sample curriculum for the Medicinal Chemistry Track.

For more details regarding the required course work, please visit our program’s section in the UCI General Catalogue.


Application Instructions

Complete the Online Application which is submitted to the UCI Graduate Division. When completing the “Degree Program” section of the online application for admission, please make the following selections:

Students are admitted to the Pharmacological Sciences PhD program on an annual basis in the fall quarter only. The admissions committee screens applications immediately after the application deadline. First round applicants selected to interview will be notified by early January. Admitted applicants can expect to receive an offer of admission in late January through mid-March.

Submit applications by Dec 1 for full consideration

The online application and supporting materials should be received by December 1 for full consideration, but submissions received up until to January 5 may be considered.

Applicants are required to submit:

Applicants are encouraged to upload the following in their application:



 Admission Statistics

The acceptance rate for the Pharmacological Sciences program is approximately 23%, and admitted applicants from previous cycles had the below characteristics:

Student Funding

Admitted applicants receive funding for tuition, health insurance, and a monthly stipend/salary through a combination departmental or university fellowships and/or teaching assistant (TA) and graduate student researcher (GSR) positions in their first year. In years two through five, students are generally funding by their faculty advisor as GSRs, as well as through a combination of university fellowships, extramural grants/fellowships, and/or TA positions.

Diversity Fellowships

UCI is committed to the recruitment, admission, and retention of a high quality and diverse graduate student population and has several diversity fellowships for new and returning students who qualify.  If you have overcome socioeconomic or educational challenges, please indicate that you are a diversity candidate and describe your experience in detail within the Personal History section of the application.

International Students

TOEFL scores are required for all international applicants.
Exceptions are only granted for students who have:

For more information regarding admissions requirements for international students, visit the Academic Qualifications webpage.

Teaching Assistant (TA) Eligibility
All international students, including those with Permanent Resident Status, must pass an oral English proficiency exam approved by UCI to serve as a Teaching Assistant.

The only exceptions are for those applicants who have:

For more information about the English language requirements for TA’s, please visit the English Language Proficiency Requirements for TAs webpage. For additional information about graduate study at UC Irvine, please visit the UCI Graduate Division website.

Information regarding visas, student employment, and any other services to help international students transition into life at UCI is overseen by the UCI International Center.