Preferred and Legal Name


By allowing students to use a preferred name, UCSB hopes to give students an empowering, safe and nondiscriminatory university experience. The preferred name option lets students change their first name in most university information systems without pursuing a legal name change. Reasons for using a preferred name may include transgender or gender nonconforming identities, international students or other students who wish to adopt an English language name, and students known by names that are different from their legal name. Equally important, no student should feel pressured to take on an Anglicized name for acceptance or the convenience of others. 

To specify a preferred first name, students will log into the Identity Services Directory Editor, and update the "Preferred Name" field.  This field should also be used to update or remove a preferred first name (if needed). Below is a screenshot example:


Middle Name

If you have concerns about the display of your middle name in staff- and faculty-facing systems, please contact the Associate Registrar for Academic and Student Services at 805-893-8653 or

Please note:
Under FERPA, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, a student’s name may be disclosed to the public as “directory information” unless the student opts not to permit such disclosure. For students who have selected a preferred name, only the preferred name will be disclosed. To revoke the university’s disclosure of directory information, a student has the option of requesting privacy through the Office of the Registrar. For more information on directory information and how to restrict disclosure, see the "Student Records Privacy - Information for Students." To submit a request for nondisclosure, complete a Request to Restrict / Release Student Data form. 

The preferred first name provided will be the default name displayed on course rosters and in most staff- and faculty-facing systems.  The student’s legal name will still display to staff that have been granted permission or in cases where the legal name is required by law or for reporting purposes (e.g., official transcripts and verifications, diplomas, financial aid, billing/accounts receivable/ collections, reporting to the government for tax or visa purposes, etc.).  Please note that the preferred first name provided will not affect employment records for those who are also UCSB employees. 

Legal and preferred first names will be displayed in the following places: 

Location Preferred First Name Legal First Name
Admissions records
Advising records (college, graduate division) X X
Advising records (academic department) X 
Alumni records and Institutional Development X 
Athletics (NCAA) X X
Class rosters X 
Commencement X (Student's Choice)
X (Student's Choice)
Diploma  X
Education Abroad Program X X
Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) X 
Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships and MyAidStatus  X
GauchoSpace X 
Housing rosters X X
Office of Judicial Affairs records X X
Online Campus Directory X 
OrgSync X 
Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS) and
Student and Exchange Visitor System (SEVIS)
Police Department (Campus) - UCPD X 
Senior Book (La Cumbre Yearbook) X 
Student Health Services records X X
Transcripts (Official)  X
Transcripts (Unofficial)
*Student has option to choose which name appears
X* X*
 UC Path / University employment
Umail and UCSB NetID
^How to change my UCSB NetID and Umail
X^ X^
Verifications (Official)  X

Legal and preferred first names will be used when mailing to the following addresses: 

When Mailing To: UCSB Will Use Your:
Emergency contact Name of emergency contact
Local living Preferred first name
Local mailing Preferred first name
Billing Preferred first name
Parent Parent's name(s)
Permanent Preferred first name
Diploma mailing Legal first name
Umail Preferred first name
Employment address (paycheck) Legal first name


International Students

Students on an F-1 or J-1 visa who choose to use a preferred name at UCSB will have the preferred name included in their Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) record. SEVIS records will continue to include the legal name as indicated on the passport. Students on an F-1 visa, the I-20 will list both preferred and legal names. Students must disclose their preferred name in all immigration and visa applications if it has been used officially at UC Santa Barbara. Questions regarding how a preferred name will be used should be directed to the Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS).

UCSB will display preferred names to the university community where feasible and appropriate, and will make a good faith effort to update reports, documents and systems designated to use preferred names. Inappropriate use of a preferred name (including but not limited to avoiding legal obligation or misrepresentation) may be cause for denying the use of preferred names. UCSB reserves the right to remove any preferred name that is deemed inappropriate.


Name or Data Change Petition (Downloadable Form)
For more information on legal name changes, please visit the State of California Court's website.

Students who wish to change their legal name will need to download, complete, and sign the "Petition for Name or Data Change" form. Students may submit the petition and supporting documentation in person, by fax, or by mail to:

Office of the Registrar 
1101 SAASB
University of California
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-2015
FAX: (805) 893-2985 

All changes must be accompanied by applicable documentation, including but not limited to:

  • Marriage license
  • Driver's license
  • Court order
  • Government-issued ID
  • Social Security card
  • Passport

Name changes must be the full, legal name.  Nicknames, abbreviations, or initials are not acceptable unless used as legal name or approved by the Office of the Registrar. If providing documentation by mail, please provide only photocopies; DO NOT SEND ORIGINALS. 

UCSB aims to serve students from all genders, gender identities, and gender expressions.  Students are encouraged to meet with a staff member to discuss how the university may assist with their needs or questions specific to one's gender and/or name used on university records. To schedule a confidential appointment, students may contact the Director of LGBTQ Resources (805-893-5847), the Associate Registrar for Academic and Student Services (805-893-8653), or the Assistant Registrar for Academic Services (805-893-8966).   


Office of the Registrar
University of California, Santa Barbara 
1101 Student Affairs and Administrative Services Building (SAASB) 
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-2015 
(805) 893-3592

Office of International Students & Scholars
University of California, Santa Barbara
Student Resource Building, Room 3130
Santa Barbara, CA 93106
Phone: (805) 893-2929

UCSB Sexual & Gender Diversity Center

University of California, Santa Barbara
Student Resource Building, 3rd Floor
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-2036 
Phone: 805-893-5847