UC Santa Barbara General CatalogUniversity of California, Santa Barbara

Enrollment Requirements


Continuous registration (Senate reg. 275A) is required of all graduate students. To achieve official registration status during the academic year (Fall, Winter, Spring Quarters), students must be registered, with fees paid, in a minimum of 8 units (although 12 units per academic quarter is expected). ?Graduate students approved for part time registration should register for no more than 6 units per quarter.

A student must have an official registration status in order to complete degree milestones, including:

  • Take or complete a master's comprehensive exam or project
  • Advance to doctoral candidacy
  • File a thesis or dissertation
  • Have a degree awarded

A student who is planning to complete one of the above degree milestones during summer, must meet one of the following requirements:

  • If registered or on a Filing Fee Leave of Absence during Spring quarter, no Summer Session registration is required
  • If on a personal leave of absence in Spring quarter, must have completed a minimum of 4 units during one six-week Summer Session
  • If not registered (lapsed) Spring quarter, must be officially reinstated to Fall quarter and have completed a minimum of 4 units during one six-week Summer Session


Official registration status is required for the following:

  • Employment in an academic appointment title (TA, GSR, Reader, Tutor)
  • Campus services (e.g., Library privileges, University housing, Student Health Services)
  • Receive financial aid (loans, fellowships)
  • Defer loan repayment
  • International student immigration status

Unregistered (Lapsed) Status
Graduate students who fail to register (lapse) relinquish all of the following student privileges:

  • Pre-existing offers of departmental financial support (i.e., graduate student academic appointments and fellowships)
  • Use of Student Health Services
  • Library access
  • U-Mail (access is terminated after 13 months of lapsed status)
  • Ability to defer repayment of student loans
  • International students immigration status (may be asked by the U.S. Immigration Service to leave the United States)
  • Non-resident tuition reduction is not deferred by the number of lapsed quarters (non-resident tuition reduction is effective for 3 calendar years regardless of registration status)
  • Quarters in lapsed status still count towards normative and time-to-degree deadlines.

Registration After Lapsed Status
A student not registered for at least one quarter, must submit a Reinstatement Petition to regain graduate student status. Please note that reinstatement is at the discretion of the department and is not automatic.