FAQ

  • How do I Apply for Financial Aid?

    To apply for Financial Aid, you must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or CA Dream Act Application (CADAA). Priority filing deadlines are March 2 of each year. Refer to How to Apply for more information.
  • Am I Eligible for Financial Aid?

    To be eligible for aid through the FAFSA, you must:

    To be eligible for aid through the CADAA you must:

    The following students are not eligible for Financial Aid:

    • UCSB Extension students
    • Students who have defaulted on a prior student loan or who owe a repayment of aid to the U.S. Department of Education
  • How do I Accept my Financial Aid?

    Grants and scholarships are automatically accepted and applied to BARC if all criteria is met for disbursement.

    Loans for students and parents must be accepted and all loan requirements must be completed in order for them to apply to BARC.

    To learn more about the requirements for loans, visit Loans.

  • How do I Use My Work-Study?

    Unlike like other types of Financial Aid, Work-Study does not disburse to a student's BARC account. Instead, Work-Study is paid directly to the student through a bi-weekly or monthly paycheck from their employer. For more information, visit Work-Study.
  • What if My Financial Aid Doesn't Cover My Fees?

    If the Financial Aid in your BARC account does not cover your university fees and charges, you must pay the remaining balance due before the quarterly fee deadline or you will be considered late, charged a $50 late fee, and may be dropped from your classes.

  • How Much Does it Cost to Attend UCSB?

    To view the estimated cost attendance for undergraduate and graduate students at UCSB, please visit Cost of Attendance.

    The Cost of Attendance includes direct and indirect costs and is based off the 9 month academic year.

  • How will the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships Contact Me?

    Our office will usually contact you through your university email account. If you do not have a university email account, you must activate it at the U-mail website.

    Please check your email frequently to ensure you are receiving all important emails we send to you.  Furthermore, if you forward your U-mail to a different address, please update the mail filters of your forwarding address to accept e-mails from "ucsb.edu."

  • What is the Expected Family Contribution (EFC)?

    The Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is a figure used to determine your student's Financial Aid. The calculation of the EFC is based on the information that you provided on your FAFSA. This figure is not an actual amount that you must pay but an approximation of how much you should reasonably be able to contribute to your student’s educational expenses this academic year.

  • What Types of Aid Can I Receive?

    Financial aid is offered only for those quarters in which a student is enrolled. The Financial Aid Award Letter (FAAL) indicates the amount of aid the student is eligible to receive for each of those quarters. 

    Undergraduate Students
    • Gift Aid (Grants and Scholarships)
    • Work-Study
    • Loan Eligibility
    Graduate Students
    • Work-Study
    • Loan Eligibility
    • Graduate Aid (Awarded by Graduate Division)
    More information on each of these types of aid and eligibility requirements on the homepage of our website on the left-hand side bar.

  • How Do I Receive My Aid?

    Loans from our office are disbursed to a student's BARC account. For more information, visit FAQ.

    The disbursement method of fellowships and extramural funding depends on the type of assistance. For more information, please visit the Graduate Division Financial Support website.

    Please remember that loans administered by our office are disbursed on a quarterly basis: yearly awards are split into three quarterly disbursements. This may or may not match with the disbursement schedule of funding from other sources.

  • What Happens if I Receive Additional Assistance Through Another Source?

    The combination of Graduate students' loans, work-study, fellowships, fee remissions, and health insurance awards cannot exceed the "Budget" listed on their Financial Aid Award Letter.

    In other words, if a Graduate student has received an award letter containing loans and then receives a fellowship from their department, their loan eligibility will be reduced to accommodate the fellowship. If the student has already taken out their loans, they may be billed for a portion or all of the loan funds already disbursed to their BARC account.

    Information about additional financial assistance for Graduate students—including fellowships, fee remissions, and heath insurance awards—is reported to our office periodically throughout the academic year. Thus, in many cases an award may not be reported to our office until late in the academic year. Graduate students should review their award letter for any types of assistance that have not been reported and then plan for changes in Financial Aid that may occur throughout the academic year.

  • Can I Still Receive My Loans if I am Studying In Absentia?

    Students studying In Absentia are still enrolled at UCSB, and are considered to be UCSB students. So long as you are enrolled in at least 4 units, you are still eligible to borrow your Direct Loans.

    As students studying In Absentia receive a tuition discount, their loans are reduced accordingly when their In Absentia status is reported to our office. Students should take this tuition discount into consideration when deciding how much to borrow.

  • How Does a "Leave of Absence" Affect Loan Repayment?

    When a Graduate student is on an approved "Leave of Absence," they are not considered to be enrolled at least half-time. As a result, your Direct Loans will no longer be in deferral, and you will enter your grace period. The Direct Loan Servicing Center will contact you regarding the repayment of your loan.

    After you return to UCSB and are enrolled at least half-time, you are once again entitled to your student status deferment. However, you will not regain the amount of time deducted from your grace period during your leave of absence.

    For more information about loans, including information about deferment and grace periods, visit Graduate Loans.

  • As an International Student, What if Don't Qualify for Federal Aid?

    Information on financial assistance for international students is available from the Office of International Students and Scholars.

  • I am going through a financial emergency; can I get help?

    If you are experiencing a financial emergency, please contact the Financial Crisis Response Team by emailing financialcrisis@sa.ucsb.edu. This team assists students who are facing a financial crisis or urgent financial need that jeopardizes their path to graduation.