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Mexican American Studies (PHD) 
Program Description

The PhD in Mexican American Studies (MAS) is an interdisciplinary research degree. An individualized plan of study allows students to develop their own specialization  in Mexican American Studies by integrating areas such as Indigenous, Cultural, Gender, Education, Immigration, Migration, Historical, and Comparative Ethinic Studies.

Department/Academic Unit(s)

Mexican American Studies -

The Department of Mexican American Studies is committed to contemporary applied public policy research on Mexican Americans. As the leading public policy research center addressing issues of concern to this minority group in Arizona, the Department works collaboratively with key community agencies in promoting leadership and empowerment of Mexican Americans within the state and the nation. The Department achieves these goals through its applied research agenda, through its publications, and through the comprehensive curriculum it offers students at the University of Arizona. As an intellectual center, it disseminates information to a broad audience, which includes elected officials, educators, students, policy makers and other researchers.

College of Social & Behavioral Sciences  
Campus where offered
Main Campus - Tucson  
Admissions Contact
Indira Selene Arce
Graduate Program Coordinator
Indira Selene Arce
Director of Graduate Studies
Patrisia C Gonzales
Graduate College Degree Counselor
Cindy T Nguyen
Tuition and Fees
Please refer to the UA Bursar's Office Tuition and Fees Calculator for up-to-date information about tuition and fees. 
Please refer to the UA Registrar's's Office Special Course Fees for up-to-date information about special course fees. 

Admissions Information

Admissions Requirements

Applicants should hold a Masters degree or its equivalent by the date of entry into the program. To be competitive for admissions, applicants should have a GPA of at least 3.0 or higher.

January 15th is the deadline for departmental applications for the following Fall acceptance.

The Application Requirements are as follows:

Note: With the exception of official transcripts and writing sample, you will be able to upload most of your application materials.

1. Three Letters of Recommendation. The Department requires each applicant to have a minimum of 3 letters of recommendation submitted on their behalf. The letters of recommendation should be written by faculty that can speak about your academic and research ability, and your potential as a doctoral student.

2. Statement of Intent. A 1000 word statement of intent to include scholar and research interest.

3. Updated Curriculum Vitae.

4. Writing Sample. A 35-50 page scholarly paper or Master Thesis.

5. Official Transcript(s). You are required to submit official transcripts from ALL previous colleges and universities attended. Transcripts in languages other than English must be accompanied with certified translations. This application will permit you to upload a scanned or electronic version of your transcripts for initial evaluation purposes only and does not eliminate the need for official transcripts to be submitted.

Mail one set of official transcripts and writing sample to:
Department of Mexican American Studies
Graduate Admissions Committee
Cesar Chavez Bldg. Rm. 208
1110. E. James Rogers Way
PO Box 210023
Tucson, AZ 85721-0023

6. A Copy of Official GRE scores.

7. English Proficiency is one of the conditions for admission for all applicants whose native language is not English. Applicants must submit a minimum TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score of 550 paper based (PB), 79 internet based (iBT), or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) composite score of 7 (no subject area below 6).

For further information, email Margaret Yrun (Program Coordinator) at or (520) 626-8103. Thank you for applying to the PhD Program in Mexican American Studies at the University of Arizona. We look forward to reviewing your application materials.

Standardized Tests

Required test(s):
Required GRE
Minimum TOEFL: 550
Minimum IELTS: 7

Financial Aid

The department prioritizes funding for PhD students during their first 8 semesters in the program. This usually comes in the form of Graduate Teaching or Research Assistantships. This funding is dependent on performance and allocations from the Dean's Office and therefore, we cannot guarantee funding. Thus, we encourage students to research opportunities for external funding.

Admissions Deadlines

Domestic Applicants:

  • Fall: January 15

International Applicants:

  • Fall: January 1
International Conditional Admission
International applicants will not be considered for conditional admission by this program.
Other Information
The GRE Institution Code for The University of Arizona is 4832

Completion Requirements

Degree Requirements

Minumum credits: 66
Core coursework: * 18 units (6 courses)of MAS core classes and 3 units MAS 695A (to be taken the first semester).
* 15 units (5 courses) in an approved specialization area.
* 9 units of approved electives or a minor subject.
* 3-6 units in an approved research methods course.
* A minimum of 18 dissertation units.
The following must also be completed:
*Fluency and reading comprehension of an approved second language.
*A qualifying exam within two semesters that affirms formal acceptance into the program.
*Completion and affirmative evaluation of the comprehensive examination.
*Prospectus and prospectus review.
*Dissertation defense.
*Completed and approved dissertation.

Minor Requirements

MAS PhD Minor: The MAS PhD minor requires 12 MAS units, MAS 695A, an addtional 9 MAS units, and a MAS Minor advisor.

Student Handbook  

Program StatisticsInformation about these numbers

Program-level Information
Application Acceptance Rate 33%
Med. Time-to-degree (years) 3.50
Department-level Information
Enrollment Percent Male 36%
Enrollment Percent Female 64%
Enrollment Percent International 14%
Enrollment Percent URM 86%

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Last revised 13 May 2014