Study Abroad for Transfer Majors

As a transfer student to UCSB, you still can spend a year, a semester or a summer studying abroad. UCSB is one of a few UCs that allows transfer students to apply to EAP before actually enrolling at the university. Transfer students who are admitted to UCSB (with the exception of Biology majors) may, subject to approval by their academic department and EAP advisor, spend their very first summer or semester at UCSB living and studying in a place like Florence, Italy!

Returning EAP students often describe their experience abroad as a life-changing and uniquely valuable one for future choices of professional and personal goals. Regardless of the reasons for going, nearly all return with a new perspective not only on the social, cultural, and political context of a foreign country, but a new appreciation of the strengths and weaknesses of their own country as well. Some students find their lives or career choices transformed by their study abroad experience. Many find that adjusting to a foreign way of living and studying is a time of great personal growth that enhances their confidence and sense of self in ways that translate to many other pursuits. College is the time for exploration. Don’t miss out on an EAP experience!

It is your responsibility to understand the UCSB residency requirements for students who participate on EAP. Please review the Academics section of our website for additional information regarding your college, GE and EAP unit requirements, as well as residency requirements. It is highly recommended that you meet with the appropriate EAP Country Advisor for further consultation.

Please note: Your acceptance into EAP is CONDITIONAL and cannot be made official until you receive your official acceptance into UCSB. Therefore, if EAP conditionally accepts you and you are not accepted into UCSB, you will NOT be eligible to participate on EAP. Transfer students are subject to the same application deadlines as other UCSB students.

For more information be sure to visit the UCSB Transfer Center.

Why study abroad?

The benefits of studying and living abroad are tremendous. You can:

  • Learn a new language and culture.
  • Advance your cross-cultural and problem-solving skills.
  • Gain new perspectives on American society, culture and influence.
  • Take advantage of unique academic coursework opportunities.
  • Improve critical thinking skills.
  • Arrange an internship in a local corporate, governmental, public, or private organization.
  • Expand your world view by experiencing another culture firsthand.
  • Develop self-confidence and independence.
  • Prepare for a career in an internationally competitive world.
  • Enhance your resume for job or graduate school applications.

When should I study abroad?

Transfer students (with the exception of Biology majors) may study abroad as early as the summer before your first academic year at UCSB or as late as your final quarter, effectively graduating while on EAP. If you plan to go on EAP prior to Fall start at UCSB, you must apply to UCSB Summer Session and inform your UCSB EAP program advisor.  Biology majors must first attend UCSB before applying for EAP.

Where should I study abroad?

As a transfer student, you should be focusing on your major requirements. EAP offers study abroad programs for every discipline through a wide range of programs. Even if you do not speak another language, you are not limited to English-speaking countries. EAP has program options with courses taught in English in over 30 countries, including many where English is not the first language of the host culture. Explore the various program options on the UCEAP website. Using the Program Search function, you can look for programs appropriate to specific majors. 

What classes should I take?

All EAP students automatically earn UC credit for the work they complete abroad. However, the application of credit to major requirements or GE requirements is subject to the discretion of the department and your college. Plan ahead and consult with your advisors before leaving and while abroad. Save all syllabi, papers and other relevant course information for courses you may want to petition for G.E. or major requirements.

Keep in mind that at least 20 units of upper-division major coursework (or 12 upper-division minor units) must be completed in residence at UCSB along with other residence requirements. Consult a Letters & Science College advisor for more information.

How do I calculate my GPA?

GPA requirements must be met at the time of application and maintained through departure.
Transfer students attending UCSB with at least one completed quarter:  you will use your UCSB GPA. Your transfer GPA may not be considered. If your UCSB GPA does not meet the requirement, please consult with your EAP program advisor for guidance and other possible options.

Students enrolled in your first quarter at UCSB: Submit a UCSB transcript even though you may not have completed any coursework at this point. You may use your transfer GPA to meet the program requirements. HOWEVER, you MUST continue to meet the program requirements with the UCSB GPA you will receive at the end of your first term. Failure to meet the requirements with your UCSB GPA could result in your withdrawal from the EAP program.

Students currently applying to UCSB but NOT yet accepted: You may be eligible to apply. Contact your EAP advisor

How do I get started?

  • Identify your study abroad goals.
  • Research program options at
  • For major-specific advice, visit the academics tab at
  • Stop by the EAP office at 2431 South Hall to speak with knowledgeable advisors.
  • See your department undergraduate advisor for major requirements and degree audits.
  • Make an appointment with a Letters & Science advisor for general ed and residency requirements.