Information useful for the life of a graduate student.
- Who and What You Need to Know
MCDB Staff Graduate Advisor
MCDB Faculty Graduate Advisor
BMSE Staff Graduate Advisor
BMSE Faculty Graduate Advisor
What MCDB wants you to know
What Grad Div wants you to know
The GradPost is the primary source for news, funding, professional development, advice, events, and more related to graduate student life at UC Santa Barbara. It also serves as the digital outpost of the Graduate Student Resource Center, where grad students can find in-person services and support to help successfully navigate the graduate experience at UCSB.
For Students By Students! If you want the handbook in booklet format, just print this version double sided and staple!
Note: You are grandfathered in under the graduate guide version that was current when you entered
UCSB Student Handbook
Kevin Haggerty and Aaron Doyle offer tips on making postgraduate study even tougher (which students could also use to avoid pitfalls if they prefer)
- MCDB / BMSE T-Shirt Orders
- University Community
We can all use some
Graduate student near campus housing
See cool performances! Learn about something new! Most have discounted prices for students!
Find support in a typically male dominated field
- Graduate Life Outside
You'll laugh because it's true
Seed Magazine (broken)
Science is Culture
Local Hikes (broken)
Hike away stress!
Exercise the body too!
See cheap movies, improv shows, and more!
- Exam Tips
Preliminary Exam Tips
As of 2021, BMSE and MCDB have different preliminary exam formats. BMSE prelim is on-topic while MCDB prelim is off-topic.
MCDB Prelim consists of writing a grant proposal on a topic that is unrelated to the topic of your dissertation. After you have written the proposal, you then have to defend the proposal, any and all aspects of it, before 4 faculty members. This the the final and largest hurdle you have to pass before you are fully accepted as a graduate student here at UCSB, so here are some tips.
Advancement Exam Tips
Also see this google doc from 2015 with compiled advice from both grad students and faculty
On Selecting a Topic
- When searching for a topic, look for current reviews in top journals.
- If you think the topic is too close to your dissertation topic...it is.
- Pick a topic that excites you, it's a long process so try and enjoy it!
On Research and Writing
- Talk to anyone you like about your topic or a technique(i.e. other graduate students, postdocs, professors in that field).
- Most students take about a solid month to write (minimal or no bench time), so plan accordingly.
After Submission of the Proposal
- Anyone can read your proposal at this time, so get feedback from many people.
- Organize a mock committee. Usually a mock consists of graduate students from labs of your committee members. Keep in mind that all grad students are busy, so be accomodating and curtious, they are doing you a huge favor!
The Oral Exam
- Take the advice your mock committee give you seriously.
- Be able to draw all your data and controls from memory, you can only bring a copy of your proposal into the room.
- Relax, you know this topic better then anyone else in the room!