The University of Alabama at Birmingham encourages application from and gives full consideration to all candidates for admission and financial aid without respect to age, sex, sexual orientation, race, disability unrelated to program performance, color, religion, or national origin.



Students select a theme upon application but have access to faculty and courses from across GBS and UAB, allowing for flexibility in both research and academics.  Learn more about themes.


Application Deadline

Applications for Fall 2020 are now open. Applications are not accepted for spring or summer terms.

  • Priority Application Deadline: December 2, 2019 - FREE domestic applications if submitted by this date
  • Final Application Deadline: December 31, 2019, 11:59pm Central Time

All components listed in the Application Checklist, including letters of recommendation, are due by the application deadline. We encourage early submission of applications so the Graduate School can verify uploaded materials and applicants have time to make any needed corrections before the deadline.


Application Requirements

  • Minimum of six months of research experience.
  • English proficiency scores for international applicants (minimums: TOEFL 80; IELTS 6.5; PTEA 53; IELA 176; Duolingo 120).  Scores must be no more than two years old at the time of application submission.
  • An online application including all components listed in the Application Checklist.

Note: GRE scores are optional (i.e. not required) for domestic and international applicants.  There are no specific courses or majors required.  A master's degree is not required.


Application and Selection Process

Applicants apply to one of eight interdisciplinary themes.  Starting around late October or early November, applications will be reviewed by the theme admissions committee as they become complete, so early applications are encouraged. 

Competitive applicants are invited to interview in early spring either on-campus or via Skype.  Offers of admission are generally made from January through April.  Admission to the program is highly competitive and the number of positions is limited; therefore, not every qualified applicant can be offered an interview or a position.

Offers of admission will be based on a combination of factors, including (but not limited to):

  • Research experience
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Personal statement
  • Resume or CV
  • Undergraduate performance (both curriculum and GPA)
  • English proficiency scores
  • GRE scores (if the candidate chooses to provide)
  • Interview (on-campus or Skype)

April 15 is the final day for an applicant who has an offer of admission to accept or decline the offer.