Steps to Enrollment Overview
Watch this helpful tutorial on how to navigate the Steps to Enrollment as you prepare to start at UCSB.
Before You Decide
Review Financial Aid Offer (if applicable)
Each applicant who submitted the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application (CADAA) will receive a financial aid offer from UCSB. The application must include out school code (001320). Your financial aid offer will be available about a week after Admissions decisions are released, and will provide an estimate of your aid eligibility. To access your Financial Aid Offer, log in to the Admissions Applicant Portal and select the “Check My Financial Aid Status” link. If you confirm that your application was submitted, but get a message that UCSB has not received it, please contact the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships for help. For more information about financial aid, including options for students who may qualify for aid under the California Dream Act, visit the UCSB Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships website.
- Saturday, April 15, 2023. Learn more and register online.
Join us in-person for UCSB’s annual Open House event. Programming will include outdoor resource and information fairs, live performances, and demonstrations. We hope you will join us to learn more about life at UCSB.
Explore the UCSB campus by joining a student-led guided tour or register for a self-guided visit. More information about our visit options can be found on our Campus Visits webpage.
Live Virtual Tours
If you're unable to visit campus in-person, join us for a live, virtual guided tour. Led by current students, the virtual tour will showcase the UCSB campus, academics, student life, and more with an opportunity for live Q&A. View the schedule and register online.
Virtual Admitted Student Presentations
The Office of Admissions will be offering Admitted Student Presentations for both freshmen and transfers to provide more information on enrolling at UCSB. Visit Admitted Student Events for available dates and to register.
Use the housing options filter to find your home at UCSB! Select one or more types to display the living options that match your needs and eligibility. New freshmen will be able to submit a housing application in mid-March after admission decisions are released.
Use the housing options filter to find your home at UCSB! Select one or more types to display the living options that match your needs and eligibility. New transfer students will be able to submit a housing application in mid-April after admission decisions are released.
The university is committed to providing a safe and secure campus environment for our students, faculty, staff, and visitors. In accordance with the federal Clery Act, UC Santa Barbara publishes an Annual Security and Fire Safety Report (ASFSR). The ASFSR provides information regarding UC Santa Barbara safety and security policies, campus crime statistics, and resources for students and employees. It also contains information regarding campus fire safety policies and fire-related statistics for on-campus student housing facilities. To access the Annual Security and Fire Safety Report, visit www.police.ucsb.edu/asfsr. A copy of the ASFSR may also be requested by contacting the UC Santa Barbara Police Department at (805) 893-3446 or by visiting 574 Public Safety Bldg., Santa Barbara, CA 93106 during business hours.
Accepting Your Offer of Admission
To reserve your enrollment space at UC Santa Barbara, you must submit a Statement of Intent to Register (SIR) by the specified deadline.
- Deadline: For most students, the SIR deadlines for fall quarter are May 1 for freshmen and June 1 for transfers. The deadline to submit (or postmark) your SIR is displayed when you log in to the Applicant Portal.
To Accept Online
- Log in to the Applicant Portal and click the “Accept or Decline Admission” button.
- Follow the instructions to complete the form and submit it electronically with your non-refundable $250 SIR deposit by the deadline noted in your Applicant Portal or your admission letter. Deposits can be made via credit card (with a service fee, visit the BFS site for details) or e-check. Some students may qualify for a deferral, please go through the online payment section. If you qualify, the system will automatically approve the deferral.
- Wire transfers are NOT accepted for SIR deposits.
To Accept by Mail (only if you are not able to submit your SIR online)
- If you are not able to submit your deposit through the portal, you must print and complete the SIR PDF available in your portal. Mail submissions along with your payment postmarked by the SIR deadline printed on your SIR form. Otherwise, you may risk denial of enrollment due to space limitations.
- Under Submission Options on page 4, select "Complete SIR and Payment by Mail"
- Fill out and return the printed SIR along with the non-refundable $250 SIR deposit, a check payable to the "Regents of the University of California." Please write your permanent UCSB student identification number (“Perm” number), which is printed on your admission letter, on your check to help us credit the deposit to your account.
- Send your SIR and check to: UC Santa Barbara, Office of Admissions, Attn: SIR Processing, 1210 Cheadle Hall, Santa Barbara, CA 93106-2014.
- If you have been admitted to more than one University of California campus, you may only return one positive SIR.
- If you have decided not to register at UCSB, please log in and complete the SIR indicating your alternate plans.
- If you wish to request a change in your major, follow the instructions on the Major Changes page.
- If you have questions, contact the Office of Admissions at email@example.com.
All new students are required to have a UCSBnetID and a UCSB U-Mail account to conduct university business. Your UCSBnetID will give you access to the majority of the online services you will need to use during your academic career. U-Mail is UCSB's student email service, to which all official correspondence is sent. Once activated, all University business will be sent to this email address, and students are expected to check this account regularly. U-Mail messages may be forwarded to another account if you choose to do so.
A few days after you submit your SIR you will be eligible to activate your UCSBnetID and U-Mail account. To do so, sign in to the UCSB Identity Manager. The Identity Manager service will activate both your UCSBnetID and U-Mail account. The UCSB Student Support Center is available for assistance if you have any problems activating your account. Do not click any links from senders you do not recognize. Visit the UCSB Information Security site for more information.
Mutli-Factor Authentication (MFA) is mandatory for key UCSB services and applications. MFA adds an additional layer of security by verifying not only that a person knows a password, but that the person also has access to a registered device, like a smartphone. In the Steps to Enrollment process, applicants will need MFA for steps in residency for tuition, student health and more. Get started with MFA here.
International Students: If you are an international student or you did not enter a Social Security Number (SSN) in your UC application, please enter “0000” as the last four digits of your SSN when setting up your UCSBnetID.
Within 72 hours of establishing your UCSBnetID and UCSB U-mail email account, you will receive an email from the Office of International Students & Scholars (OISS) to your UCSB email address with instructions on how to access UCSBGlobal and request your I-20 or DS-2019. All international students must have an I-20 or DS-2019 issued by UCSB OISS prior to starting their program. For more information on how to request your immigration document from OISS, please visit https://oiss.ucsb.edu/student/newly-admitted-students.
If you are an international transfer student, you must initiate a transfer with your previous school and make a request in UCSBGlobal for a transfer-in I-20 from OISS. Your I-20 is not automatically transferred or created, you must initiate the transfer process at both institutions. You can find more information at https://oiss.ucsb.edu/student/newly-admitted-students/newly-admitted-transfer-students.
Multi-factor Authentication must be set up prior to completing this step.
If your applicant portal classifies you as a resident or nonresident, this step was confirmed through your UC application and you are not required to complete the Statement of Legal Residence. Only “undetermined status” students need to follow the instructions below:
Submitting the online Statement of Legal Residence (SLR) is mandatory if your status has not yet been determined. The information you provide on your SLR is used by the Office of the Registrar to determine your residency classification for tuition and fee purposes. Therefore, all students are considered non-residents until they have submitted the SLR and California residency is confirmed. PLEASE NOTE: Failure to submit the SLR will result in the assessment of out-of-state tuition and fees and may prevent disbursement of financial aid and course enrollment.
You may access the Statement of Legal Residence directly from your SIR confirmation page or from the Office of the Registrar. The SLR is available online only. If you have questions regarding residency requirements, feel the determination was made in error, or your status has changed, please contact the UCSB Residency Deputy via email at firstname.lastname@example.org to request a “status changed to undetermined.” The undetermined status will allow you to resubmit your Statement of Legal Residence for a new assessment. You may also visit the Office of the Registrar website and click on “Fees & Residency” for more information.
- Return your Statement of Intent to Register (SIR) by May 1.
- After you return your SIR and it is recorded in the UCSB Housing database (usually within a business day), you will be able to complete your housing application online.
- The deadline is May 15. Please visit the freshmen housing application page for more information.
- Return your Statement of Intent to Register (SIR) by June 1.
- After you return your SIR and it is recorded in the UCSB Housing database (usually within a business day), you will be able to complete your housing application online. The deadline is June 15. Please visit the transfer housing application page for more information.
Multi-factor Authentication must be set up prior to completing this step.
All registered UC students are required to have medical health insurance that meets minimum coverage limits. It is a condition of enrollment AND a non-academic requirement of registration. Please log in to the Student Health Gateway Portal and follow the “Clearances” menu to acknowledge the University of California’s insurance requirement.
UCSB students are automatically enrolled in Student Health Insurance Plan (UC-SHIP), which includes medical, vision, and dental coverage, and access to UCSB Student Health with most services having no additional charges. The premium for UC-SHIP will be factored into your cost of attendance and will therefore be included in your Financial Aid Award. The insurance premium will automatically be included in your quarterly BARC bill.
If you have adequate private insurance and do not wish to be enrolled in UC-SHIP, you must take action and submit a waiver online. The act of waiving requires the student to upload insurance documentation into a secure website and receive written email confirmation that their waiver was approved. Please note that your Financial Aid Award will change if you waive out of UC-SHIP. For more information, please review the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarship’s Policy Information page. The waiver deadline is September 1. Once a waiver request has been approved, it remains in effect until the beginning of the next academic year.
Students with approved waivers may purchase pre-paid access to most Student Health services through the Gaucho Access Plan (GAP).
All incoming and re-admitted students are required to complete a Tuberculosis (TB) screening and satisfy immunization requirements as mandated by the UC Office of the President. The recommended due date for your Entry Immunization Requirements is before the start of your first quarter. Failure to comply with the requirements will result in a registration block for the following quarter. We strongly encourage you to start this process early, as you may be required to complete additional steps prior to arrival on campus.
Instructions for completing these requirements can be found on the Student Health website. Students can complete tuberculosis (TB) screening, enter required immunization dates and upload immunization records on the Student Health Service (SHS) Gateway portal.
The COVID-19 Vaccine Requirement is due prior to arriving on campus. If you received your vaccine in another country, please check and see if it will be acceptable in the U.S. UCSB accepts WHO-approved vaccinations only. Students can refer to this list to see if their vaccination is approved.
The Student Health Service Patient Portal requires the use of Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) with Duo. If you have not yet set up MFA/Duo, please visit it.ucsb.edu/mfa and enroll your device today.
The instructions for completing the COVID-19 requirement can be found on the Student Health website. Additional updates related to COVID-19 will be sent via email after enrollment. For questions regarding this requirement please contact email@example.com.
All transfer students have already satisfied the Entry Level Writing Requirement (ELWR) with their transfer coursework.
All students who enter the University of California as freshmen must demonstrate their command of the English language by fulfilling the Entry Level Writing Requirement (ELWR).
Incoming first-year students can satisfy ELWR in any of the ways described on the Writing Program website. California resident and domestic non-resident students should take the Collaborative Writing Placement (CWP) program if they have not satisfied the ELWR requirement. International students should take the English Language Placement Exam (ELPE) online in June with the English for Multilingual Students (EMS) Program.
Multiple sections of Writing 1 and Linguistics 12 are offered during fall, winter, and spring quarters. Qualified students may also take Writing 1 at UCSB during the Freshman Summer Start Program or Linguistics 12 during Summer Sessions. Prior to a student’s first quarter at UCSB, including during the summer term, transferable college English composition courses taken at a community college and completed with a grade of C or better, will also satisfy the requirement. All students must fulfill the Entry Level Writing Requirement by the end of their third quarter at UCSB.
- Most students will be able to satisfy the ELWR by taking Writing 1 (Approaches to University Writing). However, some students for whom English is not their first language may require assessment via the English for Multilingual Students (EMS) Program. Students placed into EMS Program courses will satisfy the ELWR by taking Linguistics 12 (Approaches to University Writing for Multilingual Students). Students whose written performance indicates a need for additional academic writing instruction will be required to take from one to three sequential pre-ELWR courses (Linguistics 3A, 3B, or 3C).
If you have any questions regarding the Collaborative Writing Placement program, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have questions regarding the English Language Placement Exam (ELPE), please contact EMSplacement@linguistics.ucsb.edu.
After You Accept
Orientation session registration opens in mid-May.
- Two-day online freshman orientation sessions: June 29 through August 11
- One-day transfer orientation sessions: August 14, 15, 16, 17, 18
- Transfer online module: Opens June 1
You are strongly encouraged to attend orientation. While not mandatory, orientation gives you an important head start in preparing for your college career. UCSB offers approximately 17 orientation sessions each summer for new students and their parents. These sessions are two days for freshmen and one day for transfer students. They include extensive academic advising, and students who complete orientation are given a priority status to register for classes. Detailed information is available on the Orientation Programs website.
Beginning in mid-May, all new students who have returned their Statement of Intent to Register (SIR) can sign up for orientation by submitting a reservation on the Orientation Programs website. Space in each orientation session is limited and session dates will close when full.
International Students: International students currently outside of the U.S. will not be able to enter the U.S. with their student visa more than 30 days prior to the start of classes. Online orientation sessions for international freshmen will be offered during the summer; additional information will be sent via University email. International transfer students should complete the transfer module and are strongly encouraged to attend an online transfer orientation session.
All incoming international students are required to attend mandatory CALI Training (Cultural Awareness, Laws, and Immigration Training) hosted by the Office of International Students & Scholars. CALI Training takes place in September. Please visit the OISS website for more information. Also, please visit the International Students page on the Orientation website for information on both required and optional pre-fall programs.
- Transcript submission deadline: July 1
- Test score submission deadline: July 15
- Summer session transcripts are due September 1.
The Office of Admissions must receive the following.
- Official final high school transcript: Final high school transcripts are required of new freshmen. Your final high school transcript must show the exact date of your graduation. "Class of 2023" is not acceptable. Transcripts are considered official when they are delivered directly from the school.
- Transfers are also required to submit a final high school transcript unless the student is submitting an official full UC IGETC certification from a community college. UCSB will continue to require your high school transcript until an official full UC IGETC certification is received by the Office of Admissions. An official high school transcript or full IGETC certification is due to the Office of Admissions by July 15, 2023.
- Official transcripts from all colleges you have attended.
- Official Advanced Placement (AP) exam, International Baccalaureate (IB) score reports, and Duolingo English Test (DET) TOEFL, IELTS or GCE A-Level results, if applicable. The results must be sent directly from the testing agency to the Office of Admissions.
- If you plan to take courses during the summer, submit transcripts by September 1 to avoid a delay in receiving transferable credit for completed coursework.
Official transcripts can be submitted electronically using Credentials Solutions/eSCRIP-SAFE, eTranscript CA, JST DoD Military Transcripts, Kiteworks, National Student Clearinghouse, Parchment Exchange1, Scribbles Software, SCOIR, SPEEDE, or by physical mail. Send transcripts and test scores to: Office of Admissions, UC Santa Barbara, 1210 Cheadle Hall, Santa Barbara, CA 93106-2014.
Missing transcripts and/or test scores will result in your registration being blocked and ultimately the withdrawal of your admission offer. Delays in receiving official transcripts may also jeopardize your financial aid and/or housing possibilities, will disadvantage you in the academic advising process, and can affect enrollment in appropriate courses.
My Aid Status serves as the financial aid login portal for UCSB students. You can log into My Aid Status with your UCSB NetID and password. After submitting your Statement of Intent to Register, be sure to check My Aid Status to review your financial aid and submit any required documents. If all your requirements are completed, you can view your financial aid award letter and accept your student loans beginning in July. In late August, you can view scheduled financial aid disbursements for the upcoming term. Emails are sent to you UCSB email account when you have requirements to complete, or when your aid is updated. It is important to read emails from the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships and check My Aid Status throughout the year.
The Freshman Summer Start Program (FSSP)
- Program Dates: August 4 - September 15, 2023
- Applications Open: April 17, 2023
The Freshman Summer Start Program (FSSP) is designed to help admitted first-year students successfully transition from high school to UC Santa Barbara. This six-week program offers freshmen a unique opportunity to take UC Santa Barbara courses for full academic credit and participate in a wide range of academic and social activities. FSSP participants earn between 7 and 12 units and benefit from small class sizes that foster a personal connection with esteemed faculty, while simultaneously building a supportive community of peers through social activities. Students live together in the San Nicolas Residence Hall, forging friendships that endure long past the program’s conclusion. Financial aid is available for eligible students, along with other cost-saving opportunities. Out-of-state/international students pay the same fees as California residents during FSSP. To learn more about the steps to summer enrollment and to apply, click here.
- Freshman Summer Start Program (FSSP) - EOP Satellite Office Support
The Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) provides a support and information base that validates each student's experience and nurtures a sense of participation, belonging and empowerment. In line with the EOP mission, services are focused towards first-generation and income eligible students. During FSSP, two EOP Counselors and four Peer Mentors provide counseling/advising that specifically addresses the needs of first-year students who are identified as members of EOP enrolled in FSSP. However, all FSSP students are welcome to utilize these services. Additionally, EOP works in collaboration with campus partners by designing and providing specialized programs and activities for student participation. Read more about EOP in the next step, below.
- Program Dates: August 6 – September 15, 2023
- Applications Open: May 1, 2023
Transfer Edge is specially designed to help incoming transfer students make a successful academic and social transition to UC Santa Barbara. Newly admitted transfer students will get a head start on their degree objectives by registering for major and required courses, and will receive individualized advice from campus experts. Participants will be exposed to unique professional development opportunities, build a supportive community with peers through fun social activities, and exchange ideas with faculty and graduate students. A summer start helps students gain an academic edge, preparing them for the rigors of a full course schedule in the fall quarter. Financial aid and incentive opportunities are available for eligible students. To learn more about the steps to summer enrollment and to apply, click here.
EOP Summer Transitional Enrichment Program (STEP) for First-year Freshmen Students
- STEP Dates: August 26 - September 2, 2023
- Application Deadlines: https://eop.sa.ucsb.edu/summer-programs/step
The Summer Transitional Enrichment Program (STEP) is a FREE, residential (on-campus) program for incoming first-year students in the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) held in late summer before students begin their first fall quarter. EOP is a program that provides counseling, advising, peer mentorship, workshops, and programming primarily for undergraduate students who are income eligible and of the first-generation in their families to attend and graduate from a four-year university.
The purpose of STEP is to facilitate the transition of EOP students to UCSB. During STEP, students receive an introduction to college-level courses and coursework and various valuable resources available to them on campus. Workshops, lectures, and other programs provide opportunities for students to learn outside the classroom. Students discover ways to enrich their college experience while creating social and support networks on campus in order to cultivate a sense of belonging to the university community. Note: STEP does not replace New Student Orientation.
EOP Summer Transfer Transition Program (STTP) For First-year Transfer Students
- STTP Dates: August 26 - September 2, 2023
- Application Deadlines: http://eop.sa.ucsb.edu/summer-programs/sttp
The Summer Transfer Transition Program (STTP) is a free, on-campus program for incoming transfer students in the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP). The purpose of STTP is to facilitate the transition of EOP transfer students to UCSB. Students will be attending academic, social, and career focused workshops and programs to provide opportunities to learn outside the classroom. Students discover ways to enrich their college experience and cultivate a sense of belonging at UCSB. Note: STTP does not replace New Student Orientation.
- Deadline: Ongoing
Students must provide contact information for a parent, guardian or other contact to be used in case of an emergency and for periodic official campus communications. To add a parent or guardian contact, log into the Applicant Portal and click on “Complete the Parent/Guardian Contact Form” in the “Steps to Enrollment” tab. If you do not have a parent or guardian, the form will allow you to select “other” in the “Relationship” field and include an alternate contact.
Get Ready to Start
We strongly encourage you to attend orientation, where new students are assisted in the registration process. New students who do not attend orientation should register online during their Pass 2 registration appointment time in September. You will receive an email from the Office of the Registrar with more information. International students will receive an email with information about registering for courses.
The UCSB General Catalog contains major requirements, course descriptions and prerequisites. Twelve units per quarter is the minimum to maintain full-time registered status. UCSB undergraduates typically register for 12-17 units per quarter.
For important enrollment information, deadlines, and to search for classes, log into GOLD. Please note that to use GOLD (Gaucho On-Line Data System) you must have activated your U-Mail account and UCSBnetID (please see the “Accepting Your Offer” section above for information). To see enrollment information and search for classes without logging into GOLD, visit the Class Search page.
While you are in GOLD, visit the My Personal Information page where you can ensure that the information there is current and complete. Scroll down to the Pronouns section and choose from the drop-down menu. The pronouns you select will appear on course rosters and in GauchoSpace, the online learning environment for UCSB. To learn more about pronouns, review Pronouns 101. All students are encouraged to select their pronouns in GOLD.
- Fall Fee Deadline: September 15
The exact cost of attending the University of California, Santa Barbara will vary. A detailed breakdown of estimated expenses is available on the UCSB Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships’ Cost of Attendance page.
The university's billing system (known as Billing, Accounts Receivable and Collections, or “BARC”) consolidates all of the financial transactions related to attending UCSB into one account. This includes all debts owed to the university such as fees, campus housing expenses, lab fees or library fines as well as all credits such as your Financial Aid and Scholarship transactions and payments made by you or by your family. Gaucho E-Bill is the electronic bill presentment system employed by the university to notify students of their financial obligations to the university. Billing statements are not mailed to students or parents. Each month an email is sent to students’ U-Mail addresses notifying them that their bill can be viewed and paid. In order for parents to receive email notifications and gain access to Gaucho E-Bill, students must first authorize parent users to their account. More information can be found on the BARC website, including step-by-step instructions on how to add a Parent User. New students can expect their first billing statement notification during the month of August, with payment due September 15. Failure to meet financial obligations on time will result in a $50 late payment fee and/or being dropped from your classes. Fee payment deadlines are published quarterly in the Schedule of Classes.
There are important student support systems throughout the university. A useful list of support services and web pages is available online. Please review the information as part of your Steps to Enrollment and bookmark the page for your future reference.
Don't miss important dates & deadlines
It is your responsibility to check your U-Mail for information and to meet all deadlines. See the Office of Admissions Dates and Deadlines page and don’t miss a deadline!
May 15: Freshmen Housing Application deadline
June 15: Transfer Housing Application deadline
June 15: Financial aid documents deadline
July 1: Submit transcripts
July 15: Test Score deadline
September 1: Review and agree to UC requirements for health insurance coverage
September 15: Pay fees
September 23-24: Move-In Weekend (Tentative)
September 25: New Student Convocation
September 28: Instructions Begin
October 1: Insurance waiver deadline