Common Questions

As a new student, we know that you have a lot of questions. Here are some quick answers to some commonly asked questions.

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General Questions

Q: What does college affiliation mean? [show]

A: All undergraduate students at UC Santa Cruz are affiliated to a residential college. The college affiliation is not tied to a major. Your college advising and programming services are at your affiliated college.

Q: Are you allowed to utilize resources at a different college than the one you are affiliated with? [show]

A: Generally, resources are for specific colleges, BUT you can always ask that specific college if they would make an exception. It really depends on what the resource is that you are attempting to utilize and if there is space for you to do so. If you are trying to enroll in a course that is restricted to college members only, you can contact the instructor to see if there is space for non-affiliated students.

Q: When do I take my ID pictures? [show]

A: Use the SlugCard course to upload your photo. Follow the photo submission instructions carefully to get your photo approved.

Q: When is my enrollment appointment? [show]

A: You will receive specific date and time information once you fully complete Course 2. The earlier you complete Course 1 and 2, the earlier you will receive your enrollment appointment.

Q: When signing up for courses, will we see the times and days that the class takes place? [show]

A: Yes, you can also use the Schedule of Classes, to verify when and where a course is offered.

Q: I come from a semester school. What should I expect from the quarter system? [show]

A: The quick-pace of the 10-week quarter system is a difficult adjustment for some students. The quarter goes by very quickly; mid-terms can start as early as the second week of class! You can prepare by getting your books early, starting your reading/studying, reviewing the course syllabus, scheduling all of your exams (mid-terms and final) in your calendar and planning your study time in advance. It is easy to fall behind in your work as you transition, so be sure to ask for help as soon as possible. UC Santa Cruz Learning Support Services provides free tutoring and study skill information for all students. Get support early.

Q: What should I do if I forgot my CruzID blue and gold passwords? [show]

A: Go to CruzID manager at or request help from ITS.

Q: How do I learn about tutoring opportunities? [show]

A: View Modified Supplemental Instruction (MSI) schedules or sign up for tutoring at Learning Support Services (LSS) once classes begin.

Q: What is research like? What happens during research? What benefits come from researching? [show]

A: Everyone has a different experience with research and you can research almost anything! Professors lead research and direct you to resources and expose you to their area of expertise. We recommend you look at the undergraduate research centers website to get an idea.

Q: Is it possible to order books for my courses so I can study ahead of time to prepare? Do I email professors or can these books be found online. [show]

A: It may be possible to view and find your class textbooks and purchase them in advance. Textbook listings will be added over the summer as fall approaches.

Q: What are the tuition fees? Do I pay by unit? When do I pay? [show]

A: View the tuition and fees webpage to see the fees breakdown. You pay as a part-time or full-time student only- not per unit. The bill is sent prior to the start of each academic quarter.

Q: I wanted to waive UCSC's UC SHIP health insurance. How do I do this? [show]

A: Refer to the UCSC Health Center’s Billing and Insurance Information page for information.

Q: What should I do about insurance if I do not have any? [show]

A: All UCSC students are required to be insured. Students are automatically enrolled in the University Health Insurance Program, UC SHIP. The fees will be added to your student account if you do not waive the insurance.

Q: Do students that study abroad go in their third year primarily? Is it not possible to go earlier or later? [show]

A: This is a pretty complicated advising question to answer. You should meet with your college adviser during the academic year to discuss your plan and options.

Q: When is Fall Welcome Week? [show]

A: Fall Welcome Week begins the day you move in. Since this differs from college to college, be sure to view the emails sent by your college and the Orientation Office and view fall move-in schedule.

Q: How do I know I was accepted into EOP? [show]

A: EOP will send students a message about the program. You can also check your Student Portal under the "Student Advising Summary" in "Milestones/Groups" tab.

Q: [Work-study] Is it possible to work on campus at UCSC without being in the work-study program? If so, how can I get involved and how difficult is it to get the job? [show]

A: There are both work-study and non work-study jobs available on campus. The Career Center posts listings for jobs on campus and you can actually look up non work-study jobs.

Q: [Employment] When can I apply for jobs? [show]

A: You can apply for jobs 10 days before the quarter starts. View this link to access job offerings:

Q: Does UCSC utilize an online learning management system in order for students to submit assignments, or view grades for a class? [show]

A: UCSC uses Canvas, which allows students to view syllabus, assignments, and submit homework. Not necessarily all classes utilize this, however it is very common.

Q: How do I find out who my counselor or adviser is? [show]

A: You will have a team of advisers at your college and a major adviser. You can find their contact information on the college website or major website.

Housing Specific Questions

Q: I am living on campus during the school year. When can I move in? [show]

A: Your move-in date depends on your college affiliation.

Q: When will I be able to contact my roommates? When do I receive my housing assignment? [show]

A: Feel free to contact your college's housing office. Room and roommate assignments will be sent out in August.

Q: Is there a list of things needed for dorm rooms? [show]

A: Your college housing office will send more information, and you can also view helpful What To Bring page provided by the Housing Office.

Q: For dormitory life, what happens when roommates do not exactly get along with. Can I request to be moved to a different room? [show]

A: There is a protocol for these types of situations. We expect that first the roommates would try to work things out by confronting the issues. Mediators or Resident Assistants (RA) are available to help mediate and set roommate agreements that work for both parties. If after this mediation the issues are not resolved or you still do not feel comfortable in your space, then you can request a change of room. Your college housing office will have more details and timelines. Space is very limited on campus and our goal is to first try to resolve the issue before moving anyone.

Q: I am planning on living off campus, and I do not yet have a place to live. When should I start looking? [show]

A: You need to start now- Santa Cruz a not an easy location to find housing. Community Rentals is great on-campus resource which has hundreds of local housing listing, and offers a variety of workshops (e.g. Renters Workshop) and other important resources.