Summer Sessions Policies

Please Note: Participating in any of our educational programs does not in itself provide preference in admission to the University of California. Students interested in applying to UC should refer to the UC Admissions website or the admissions office of the UC campus they wish to attend for details about the admissions process.


Cancellations, withdrawals, and drops are refundable until the date listed on the deadline chart for each session. After that date, there are no refunds. When you pay your fees or sign a deferred payment agreement, you have committed yourself to the completion of the enrollment process. If you subsequently decide not to fulfill your commitment, you will not receive a refund. Stopping payment on a check or money order will not relieve you of your commitment. 

Cancellation of Registration

Students who have registered for summer courses, but are no longer planning to attend Summer Sessions, have the option to CANCEL their Summer Quarter prior to the first day of instruction of Session A by completing the following steps. 

  1. Log in to GOLD.

  2. Navigate to the “Progress” menu.

  3. Select “Petitions”. 

  4. Select “Initiate Quarter Cancellation Petition”.

  5. Ensure that the selected quarter is “Summer 2020”. 

  6. Follow the steps outlined to confirm cancellation of your quarter. 

After the first day of instruction of Session A, students who are no longer planning to attend Summer Sessions have the option to partially or fully WITHDRAW from their Summer Quarter. Please visit our Forms and Petitions page to determine which form suits your needs and to begin the digital submission process. 

Schedule Adjustments (adds and drops)

Students may use GOLD for schedule adjustments until the dates listed on the Deadline Chart.

Adding Courses*
After the “Add without Petition” dates listed on the Deadline Chart, a petition or a course approval code (which can be obtained from the instructor) is required to add a course until the final “Add with petition” dates listed on the deadline chart. When approval is granted, the student is given an approval code in order to add the course on GOLD or a petition to present at the Office of the Registrar for processing. The last day to add a course with a petition or approval code is listed on the Deadline Chart. After that date, a student may add a course only by permission of the instructor and college Dean (for regular UCSB students) or with the permission of the instructor and Director/Dean of Summer Sessions (for non-UCSB students). 

Dropping Courses*
The last date to drop a course on GOLD is the drop deadline date listed for each session. (For refund deadlines see Deadline Chart.) After the drop deadline, students must obtain the approval of their college Dean or the Director/Dean of Summer Sessions to drop a course.

*After the deadline dates listed on the Deadline Chart, all UCSB students newly admitted for fall term to the College of Letters and Science must go to L&S offices for any schedule alterations, including Late Drop, Late Add, and Late Change of Grading Options. Non-current UCSB students in L&S should do the same. To completely withdraw from a Summer Session, go first to the Summer Sessions Office. See the L&S Academic Advising page for additional information. Students newly admitted to the College of Engineering and to the College of Creative Studies should go to the Summer Sessions office for all schedule changes.

Academic Credit

Students who enroll in Summer Sessions are limited to a program not exceeding 16 units, unless they petition and receive approval for an excess program. Petitions are available at the Office of the Registrar.

Regularly enrolled UCSB students should consult the Dean of their college or school for approval of excess program petitions. Students attending Summer Sessions only should consult the Director of Summer Sessions and present a recommendation from an academic dean of their home institution.

In order to obtain credit, a student must satisfy all course requirements, attend classes, turn in written assignments, and take all examinations, including the final examination. By University of California rule, final examinations must be held in all courses except as authorized by the Director of Summer Sessions.

Undergraduate students of the University of California, Santa Barbara, who are disqualified for scholastic reasons, may enroll in Summer Sessions. However, their academic standing is not changed as a result of Summer Sessions work. They may submit their Summer Sessions record for appraisal to the Dean of their college to support their request for reinstatement, but such credit is considered only as part of the overall record and is subject to the terms under which they were dismissed.


The work of all students is reported according to the following grading system:

Undergraduate Graduate
A (excellent) A (excellent)
B (good) B (good)
C (adequate) C (adequate)
D (barely passing) D (poor)
F (not passing) F (not passing)
P (passed) S (satisfactory)
NP (not passed) U (unsatisfactory)
IP (in progress) IP (in progress)
W (withdrawal)

The grades A, B, C and D may be modified by plus (+) or minus (-) suffixes. Grade points for each unit shall be assigned by the Office of the Registrar as follows: A=4; B=3; C=2; D=1; F, I, IP, P, NP, S, W and U=none. Units, but not grade points, are assigned for a P or an S grade. Minus grades carry three-tenths grade point less per unit and plus grades (excluding A+), three-tenths grade point more per unit than unsuffixed grades.

Incomplete grades
The grade Incomplete (I) may be assigned when a student’s work is of passing quality but is incomplete. An I grade may be placed on a student’s record only if the completed Petition for an Incomplete Grade, signed by the instructor, is on file in the Office of the Registrar by the last day of Summer Sessions instruction. A $5.00 processing fee will be billed to the student’s BARC account. Notification of the receipt of the approved Petition for Incomplete Grade will be sent to the Dean of the student’s college and the instructor. In the absence of the petition or another specific grade, the Office of the Registrar shall record a grade of F, NP, or U.

The grade of Incomplete may be replaced by a grade as determined by the instructor. Students will receive unit credit and appropriate grade points if a passing grade is earned and the coursework is completed by the end of the term following the term in which the I grade was reported. Students need not be enrolled for the term following the one in which the I grade was received nor must the course be offered to receive the final grade.

Unless the work is completed and a grade is reported to the Office of the Registrar by the deadline, the I will be changed automatically to F, NP, or U, as appropriate. The deadline for completion of coursework for Incomplete grades is the end of the term following the term the I grade was received. If the instructor is unavailable, the chair of the department in which the course was offered is authorized to supervise completion of the work and to make the appropriate grade change. The instructor and chair have authority to extend the deadline for completion in the event of unusual circumstances that would clearly impose an unfair hardship on the student if the original deadline was maintained.

An I grade on the student’s record at the time of graduation in a course necessary for the fulfillment of degree requirements will disqualify the student for graduation.

An I grade on the student’s record at the time of graduation in a course not necessary for the fulfillment of degree requirements may be removed only up to the end of the fifth week of the term following the date of graduation. If not removed, it will not be changed to an F or NP but will remain an I grade permanently. At the time of graduation, an I grade in a course taken for a letter grade must be utilized in the computation of the grade-point average. Its effect in that computation is identical to that of an F.

Graduate students should consult “Academic Eligibility for Graduate Students” in the UCSB General Catalog for details on possible ramifications of I grades.

Grade Changes to Incomplete
A grade may be changed to an I grade only with the approval of the Dean of the student’s college or the Dean of the Graduate Division, as appropriate, and successful completion of the petitioning process.

Withdrawal Grade
For undergraduate students, the W grade will be assigned when a student withdraws from the university or drops a course after the deadline for course withdrawal established by the Executive Committee of the college or school in which the student is enrolled. The W grade will be assigned for each course affected. Courses in which a W has been entered on the student’s record will be disregarded in determining a student’s grade-point average and will not be considered as courses attempted in assessing the student’s grade-point average for graduation.

Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory Grades
Graduate students may take graduate courses on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory (S/U) basis provided the course is so offered and their graduate advisor approves. Courses numbered 200-599 are eligible to be graded S/U, while courses numbered 1-199 are eligible to be graded P/NP. S grades will be assigned for coursework equivalent to a B or better on the letter-grade basis. U grades will be assigned for work equivalent to a B- or below. In some departments, classes required for the degree must be taken for letter grades. Students electing the S/U grading option should discuss this issue with their graduate advisors.

Passed/Not Passed Grades
Passed/Not Passed grades (P/NP) are not included in the computation of university grade-point averages. Courses graded P, however, are acceptable for unit and appropriate degree credit. P grades will be assigned only for coursework equivalent to a C or better on the letter-grade basis. NP grades will be assigned for work equivalent to a C- or below. No credit is given for courses graded NP.

Undergraduate courses may be offered exclusively on a P/NP basis with the prior approval of the appropriate faculty committees. These courses are identified in the Schedule of Classes.

Undergraduate students on academic probation, as well as those in good standing, may take such courses without special approval. Graduate students may take undergraduate courses P/NP with the approval of their graduate advisor, provided the course is offered P/NP.

Undergraduate students may elect the P/NP grading option for courses provided they meet the following conditions:

  • They are in good academic standing (i.e. not on academic probation).

  • The course is open to all qualified students on this basis.

  • The course is not required or accepted for the student’s major. Courses in the major, whether lower- or upper-division, in or outside of the major department, must be taken for a letter grade. With prior approval of appropriate faculty committees, a department may specify that certain “major or minor” courses may be taken P/NP. Courses for which such approval has been granted are identified in the department entries in the UCSB General Catalog.

  • They elect this option at the time of registration or thereafter, but not later than the deadline listed on page 4. Students are responsible for determining whether they are qualified to enroll in courses on a P/NP basis according to the requirements stated in this catalog.

  • At the time of graduation, they will have completed at least 120 or two-thirds of their units earned in residence at UCSB on a letter-grade basis. There is no limit to the number of courses that may be taken on a P/NP basis during a single quarter. The limitation on the number of units taken P/NP does not apply to students who are majoring exclusively in Creative Studies.

  • They have not been restricted or prohibited from the use of the P/NP option due to having earned an excessive number of NP grades. Students with more than 8 units of NP grades in one quarter or with more than 20 units of NP grades in all terms of university enrollment combined may be so restricted. In the case of repeated courses in which the initial grade was NP, the original NP will not be included in this 20-unit total.

  • Students who take courses in their major department in excess of minimum major requirements may elect the P/NP option for those courses

Final Grades

Grades for Summer Sessions courses will be available on GOLD approximately one week after the last day of instruction for the course. 

Students may also use GOLD to print a copy of their Summer Sessions grades. Unofficial transcripts are also available using GOLD. 

Transcripts and Verifications

Official transcripts and verifications can be ordered by currently enrolled students from the Registrar's website.

Classification of Courses

  • 1-99. Lower-division courses, open to all UCSB students; especially appropriate for freshman and sophomore students; may not be taken for upper-division or graduate credit.

  • 98-99. Independent studies courses open to lower-division students. A student may take up to 5 units per quarter, 15 units per year, and 30 units total in all 98, 99, 198, 199, 199AA-ZZ independent studies courses combined. Graduate students will not receive credit toward advanced degrees for these courses.

  • 100-199. Upper-division courses, ordinarily open to students who have satisfied the prerequisites specified in catalog descriptions of these courses. Prerequisites may include appropriate prior college-level courses or their transfer equivalents, completion of six terms of college work, or a combination of six terms of college work and appropriate prior college courses. Generally, upper-division courses are not recommended for freshman students. No graduate course credit is allowed for upper-division courses even if additional work is completed, but a limited number of upper-division courses may be applied in fulfillment of graduate degree requirements.

  • 198-199. Independent studies courses are open to students who (1) have attained upper-division standing (or are approved lower-division students in the College of Creative Studies), (2) have at least a 3.0 grade-point average for the preceding three quarters, (3) can demonstrate appropriate academic background, and (4) have obtained necessary approvals as outlined in the Schedule of Classes. A student may take up to 5 units per quarter, 15 units per year, and 30 units total in all 98, 99, 99AA-ZZ, 198, 199, and 199AA-ZZ independent studies courses combined. Graduate students will not receive credit toward advanced degrees for these courses. Unit limits are different for College of Creative Studies majors.

  • 200-299. Graduate courses, ordinarily open only to graduate students who have completed at least 12 upper-division units related to the subject matter of the course. Exceptionally well qualified undergraduates, with at least 12 units in the subject and a cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 or higher, may petition to enroll in graduate courses.

  • 300-399. Professional preparation courses primarily offered in the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education and the graduate program in Media Arts & Technology. These courses are not applicable to the bachelor's degree in the College of Letters and Science.

  • 400-499. Other professional courses (offered by the Donald Bren School of Environmental Science and Management or the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education). These courses are not applicable to the bachelor's degree in the College of Letters and Science.

  • 500-599. Courses reserved for advanced study and research, including but not limited to individual study, special topics, group projects, and practica involving teaching assistants or graduate student researchers.

Foreign Language Placement

Generally, placement into UCSB language courses following high school foreign language study is as follows:

Years of High School
Study in a Language
Normal University
Course Equivalency
Placement in 
University Courses
1 0 1
2 1 2
3 1, 2 3
4 1, 2, 3 4 or 5
5 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 5 or 6

While students may use the chart as a guide to the selection of appropriate language courses at UCSB, they are eligible for full unit credit for any language course passed at UCSB, regardless of the number of years of high school study they may have completed in the same language. However, students with college level language credit are cautioned to make certain that the course in which they plan to enroll will not duplicate their previous language study, since credit toward graduation will not be granted for repetition of equivalent courses. The foreign language department may, after testing a student’s proficiency, request that the student begin at a higher or lower level than that for which the student enrolled.

Full transfer credit may be allowed upon matriculation at UCSB for units earned in completion of foreign language courses in junior colleges and other four-year colleges.

Graduate Division Policy

Graduate students are encouraged to take summer courses that will facilitate progress in their graduate degree program. Be sure to check the Graduate Division website for information on summer fellowships, employment, residency requirements, and fulfillment of degree requirements.

Nondiscrimination Policies and Procedures

UCSB is in compliance with all legislation which seeks to eliminate discrimination toward students. Titles VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, and religion. Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972 prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex.

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability. Policy action by the Regents of the University of California prohibits discrimination on the basis of age and sexual orientation.

Members of the UCSB campus staff are available to answer students’ questions about nondiscrimination policies and procedures. Information and copies of the grievance procedure are available on line in the Appendix Section of the UCSB General Catalog and from these campus offices listed below.

Any student who wishes to file a grievance arising from alleged discrimination (other than a contested grade) must do so at the Office of the Vice Chancellor-Student Affairs, (805) 893-3651, Cheadle Hall 5203.