Information for International Students

Information for International Students

General Information:

The UCSB Graduate Division provides useful information regarding application materials, examinations, visas, financial aid, etc.

Required Examinations for Applying to UCSB

Applicants whose first language is not English are also required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System examination (IELTS). The TOEFL is administered worldwide by Educational Testing Services (ETS). In the ETS website you can: 1) obtain general information on the exams; 2) locate when and in which city in your country the exams will take place; 3) register to take the exams. Please note that the exams are offered only at the specific places and times listed in the ETS website—plan in advance accordingly. The IELTS is administered by a different organization and may be taken instead of the TOEFL.

Note also that TOEFL scores must be sent to UCSB directly from ETS. Similarly, if you decide to take the IELTS instead of the TOEFL, your scores should be sent directly from IELTS to UCSB (see Graduate Division FAQ link above).


Immigration regulations in the United States are very strict. Please read the information provided by the UCSB Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS). Upon your admission to our graduate program OISS will be able to help you directly.

UCSB English Language Placement Exam (ELPE)

Incoming international students whose first language is not English are required to take this UCSB-administered English placement exam before registering for the first time. Note that the TOEFL (or IELTS) and the ELPE are different exams taken at different steps of the process. The TOEFL (or IELTS) is a requirement for applying to UCSB and most graduate schools in the US.  In case you are admitted to our program and decide to join, then you will be required to take the ELPE prior to registration.