Enrollment in an Academic Quarter

- Enrollment Procedure

- Registration Process

- Special Course Enrollment Options

- Unit Enrollment Guidelines

- University E-mail


Enrollment Procedure


To enroll in an academic quarter, students must accomplish the following by that quarter's deadlines:

  • Register for classes.
  • Pay the "now due" fees on the student's current BARC statement and all other outstanding financial obligations to UCSB.
  • Arrange for the release of blocks (if any) on registration.
  • New students must: 1) establish their UCSBNetID and Password in order to register for their first term.  Please go to U-Mail Account Activation to complete this step, and 2) submit their Statement of Legal Residence (SLR).


Registration Process

Students are encouraged to seek academic advice prior to registration. Refer to the Academic Department Directory.

Registration Pass Times

Students are assigned three pass times that are displayed in GOLD. Students will find their appointment times in GOLD on the Registration Info page.

Students may only register during their assigned pass times:

  • First pass time: Limited to no more than 13.5 units.
  • Second pass time: Up to 19 additional units may be added. 
  • Third pass time: Students continue to adjust their schedule during their third pass time up to the maximum allowed by their college.

New and returning students only receive passes two and three.

Students should register at the beginning of their designated pass times to take full advantage of allotted time for registration. Students may only register during their assigned pass times.

Continuing undergraduate students must register for at least one course during the first pass time to avoid a $50 late registration fee.

Continuing graduate students must register for at least one course by the end of their second pass time to avoid a $50 late registration fee.

New and returning students must register for classes on or before the first day of instruction to avoid the $50 late registration fee.


Registration blocks may prevent quarter registration. Failure to remove blocks will result in a Lapsed Status and dropped from all classes. Contact the university department that placed the block for consideration of removal.

Time Conflicts

GOLD will highlight conflicts but will allow schedule conflicts. Students are responsible for course changes and resolving any time conflicts.  The system will not automatically drop a student from courses based on conflicts, although the academic departments offering the courses may drop for non-attendance.


Instructors have final authority in determining enrollment for their courses.

Prerequistes are checked when a student attempts to register for courses and again at the beginning of the quarter.

Prerequisites  are found by selecting the course title in the Schedule of Classes or in GOLD in "course info" located next to the course title.

Students who do not meet the prerequisites, may be dropped from the course by the department.

Undergraduates can enroll in graduate courses only if they have an approved Petition to Enroll in a Graduate Course on file in the Office of the Registrar prior to registration.

Adding After the 5th Day of Class

Instructor approval is required to add a class after the 5th day of instruction. If granted, students are given course approval codes. Course approval codes may be used on GOLD until the published add deadline. (move this sentence up to the Adding After paragraph)

Repeating a Course

Course repeat information appears in the UCSB General Catalog. Students should consult with their department and/or college advisors before repeating a course.

When registering for a course in GOLD that is repeatable for additional units, students will be asked to indicate whether they would like to take the course for:

1) a better grade, or

2) more units.

Students who register in a course to improve a grade, but are not eligible based on the repeat policy, will be dropped from the course.


Special Course Enrollment Options

Enrollment in a 98/99 or 198/199/199AA-ZZ Independent Studies course

Information on Independent Study Course enrollment and policies can be found in the UCSB General Catalog.   

Undergraduate Enrollment in a Graduate course

Student are required to obtain the approval signature from the course instructor, the chair of sponsoring department, and the dean of the college for students in Engineering and Creative Studies. This option is typically reserved for seniors with exceptional qualifications and superior grade-point averages. Eligible undergraduates are confined to taking courses numbered 200-299 and only those 500-level courses described as Group Studies or Special Topics. Undergraduates are not permitted to enroll in any other 500-level courses.

To enroll in graduate coursework undergraduates must have:

  • A cumulative grade-point average of 3.0, and
  • Completed 12 units of upper-division coursework in the relevant major with a grade of B or better.


Enrollment in a University Extension course

Please contact UCSB Extension for information on this enrollment option.

UCSB students who intend to enroll in UCSB Extension courses must cancel their quarter registration prior to the beginning of a quarter may do so on GOLD using the Quarter Cancellation Petition. Note: International students and visiting students are not eligible to use the GOLD petition and will need to submit a signed Cancellation of Registration petition to the Office of the Registrar.


Unit Enrollment Guidelines

Graduate Students:

The normal course load for graduate students is 12 units per quarter. Only registered students carrying a minimum load of 8 units are eligible to be appointed as graduate student researchers or as teaching assistants; to receive fellowships and most forms of financial aid; and to be eligible for campus and extramural benefits and services (University Housing, Student Health Service, etc.). Graduate students should consult with departmental advisors about recommended course work and unit load prior to each quarter.

Generally speaking, there is no part-time status for graduate students at UCSB, nor are there reduced fees for a reduced courseload. Most lending agencies demand repayment of loans if a student is not registered or is carrying less than a normal courseload. The Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement requires international students to be engaged in a full course of study while at UCSB.

Undergraduate Students:

College of Creative Studies

Students in the College of Creative Studies normally take four courses totaling at least 15 units each quarter and are not required to file petitions for excess programs.

College of Engineering
Students in the College of Engineering are subject to the following course enrollment limits:

  • 12 units–Minimum load for full-time standing.
  • 18 units–Normal maximum without petition; however, students may normally exceed 18 units with courses that exclusively use the P/NP grading option.

Undergraduate students in the College of Engineering must average at least 15 quarter units each quarter. At least three-fourths of the units passed must include courses prescribed for the major. Complete details of this requirement are contained in the UCSB General Catalog.

College of Letters and Science
Students in the College of Letters and Science are subject to the following course enrollment limits:

  • 12 units–Minimum load for full-time standing.
  • 17 units–Maximum without petition to the dean of the college for students on academic probation.
  • 21 units–Maximum without petition to the dean of the college for all other students.

The average course load for students in the College of Letters and Science is 15—17 units per quarter.


University Email

U-Mail (University email) is used for student notification by course instructors and administrative departments including the Office of the Registrar. All UCSB students must obtain a U-Mail account and keep it active.

When communicating with university personnel, students will need to use their U-Mail account for authentication purposes.

Students should contact the U-Mail help desk at 805-893-5542 if they are having problems activating or logging in to their account.