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CIS Graduate Programs

This section covers in more detail the requirements and expectations for students pursuing Masters of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Cognitive & Information Sciences at UC Merced. A suggested timeline is provided for M.S. and Ph.D. coursework. Detailed information is available here for each milestone of the Ph.D program. If a question cannot be found within these pages, please visit our FAQ page for more information, or the formal Policies and Procedures document for the CIS Graduate Program, available here. Ph.D. students entering before Fall 2022 may choose to follow the current (new) Policies and Procedures requirements listed in the aforementioned link, or the old Policies and Procedures requirements that were in place on admission.

The Cognitive and Information Sciences (CIS) graduate program offers its master’s and doctoral students interdisciplinary training in cognitive science with an emphasis on computation, technology, and applications. This emphasis distinguishes us from other Cognitive Science graduate programs. We view intelligent behaviors not just as emerging solely from neural processes, but from interactions between brain, body, and environment. Thus, intelligent behaviors may also emerge from group and social interactions situated in their economic and technological milieu. The word “information” in CIS denotes our multi-scale perspective on cognition, and our emphasis on computational approaches to understanding intelligent behavior.