4. Academic Basics

4.1. Minimum GPA

All students need to maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0 to be in good academic standing, which is necessary for academic appointments such as a TAship. The Graduate Division monitors the grades of all TAs, and will intervene if a TA’s GPA falls below the minimum. In such cases, university policy takes precedence over any departmental offers of a year-long TAship.

4.2. Procedure for Incompletes

Taking incompletes in graduate seminars is strongly discouraged. In an emergency, and with the prior approval of the seminar instructor, you may file a petition for an incomplete. This must be done prior to the last day of the quarter (the day of the last final, not the day grades are due). Your petition will include a timetable, agreed upon by your professor, for submission of the incomplete work. In no case may this work be submitted later than the end of the subsequent quarter. Petitions for incompletes are available from the Registrar. Please note: the Incomplete turns into an “F” automatically if the work is not completed by the end of the following quarter.

4.3. Leaves of Absence

Students may apply for a leave of absence for the following reasons: (1) medical/health difficulties; (2) pregnancy or parenting needs; (3) an emergency in the immediate family; (4) required military duties; (5) to file a PhD dissertation in the final quarter at UCSB using the University filing fee rather than registering and paying fees. The following are not considered reasons for a leave of absence: financial hardship and the desire not to pay fees; desire to take time off from the pressure of study; the need to focus energies on exams or thesis; the burden of outside employment; the desire to protect immigration status. Students who are approved for a leave by the departmental Faculty Graduate Advisor and Graduate Division are guaranteed reentry into the program when the leave is over and are eligible for certain services on campus. Petitions and additional information about leaves of absence are available from the Graduate Division at: www.graddiv.ucsb.edu/academic/forms-petitions

4.4. Registering In Absentia

UCSB requires continued registration of all graduate students until completion of all degree requirements. During the course of their study, graduate students may find it necessary to study or conduct research outside of California. In Absentia policy allows students conducting their research or studies away from the University to receive a fee reduction, while maintaining full-time student status.

The research or study must be directly related to the student’s degree program and of a nature that makes it necessary to be completed outside of California. This includes students holding a fellowship, internship, or having a graduate student researcher appointment.

Students who are approved for in absentia registration will receive a reduction of 85% of the combined Tuition, Student Service Fee, and Campus Fees. Other fees, notably Nonresident Supplemental Tuition and UC Graduate Student Health Insurance fees remain unchanged.

Check the general instructions and conditions for registering in absentia on the Graduate Division web site (scroll the appropriate link):


4.5. Lapse of Status

Students who do not register or pay fees for a given quarter “lapse status” and are no longer eligible for student privileges, including employment as TAs, access to Student Health Service and student health insurance, etc. A student who has lapsed for one or more quarters must submit a Petition for Reinstatement to Graduate Standing to the departmental Faculty Graduate Advisor when seeking to return to registered status. Approval of reinstatement is not automatic, but is granted at the discretion of the Department.