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New First Year Academic FAQs

Academic Advising

When can I meet with an ERC Academic Counselor?

ERC Academic Counselors do not meet with new first year students prior to Week 0. Your class selection will take place prior to Orientation. This is why it is so important to submit your Academic Background in the Virtual Advising Center (VAC) by the deadline!

Incoming students can meet with an ERC Academic Counselor starting Week 0 or "Welcome Week” of Fall quarter.  To view our Walk-In Advising hours, visit our Academic Advising webpage.

Around mid-August, incoming students will be able to communicate online with an ERC Academic Counselor via the Virtual Advising Center (VAC). Major advising will not be available through online advising.

There will be some time during Orientation to ask Advisors questions, but not one-on-one time to work through individual schedules.


When can I meet with my Major Advisor?

Contact your major advisor via email or by phone to find out when you can start contacting them with academic questions.

Academic History

Why is my Academic History blank?

The reason is either due to missing transcript(s) and/or AP/IB scores or your transcripts and AP/IB scores have been received but not posted to your records yet. Check with UCSD Admissions to ensure that they have received your transcript(s) and/or AP/IB scores.


Where can I find my Degree Audit?

To find your Degree Audit, go to the TritonLink website then TritonLink Tools > Advising Tools > Degree Audit.

AP / IB Credit

Will my (specific AP score) give me credit for (specific UCSD course)?

Please refer to the “Application of Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate Credits” (a.k.a. the AP/IB chart) to see if your AP credit meets a requirement or counts as elective units.

You can find a link to this chart by scrolling to the bottom-left of this page and clicking the "AP/IB Chart [PDF]" link.


I sent my AP and/or IB scores to UCSD. How can I check to see if they were received?

Visit the Triton Checklist at and click the relevant links under the "Transcripts and Test Scores" heading to see if your AP and/or IB scores have been received.


If I send my transcripts, AP, and/or IB scores after the deadline, will I still get credit for them and the potential courses they clear?

Even if transfer coursework or AP/IB score are sent late to UCSD Admissions, you will still receive credit on your records. However, submitting scores late can negatively impact what course recommendations are provided to you by ERC Academic Counselors and your Major Advisors. Also, if you need that credit as prerequisites towards courses you want to enroll in for Fall, it could prevent you from or delay your ability to enroll in the courses you need for Fall.

For AP/IB scores, refer to the AP/IB Chart to avoid enrolling in the same course at UC San Diego or seeing if they can count towards prerequisites for a course you need. You can find a link to this chart by scrolling to the bottom-left of this page and clicking the "AP/IB Chart [PDF]" link.


Why are the credits I got from my AP and/or IB scores not showing up on my records?

Check with UCSD Admissions to ensure your AP and/or IB scores were received.  If UCSD Admissions received your scores, request for them to be posted to your records.

Refer to the AP/IB Chart to view which UCSD course(s) and requirement(s) you are exempt from. You can find a link to this chart by scrolling to the bottom-left of this page and clicking the "AP/IB Chart [PDF]" link.


If my AP or IB score clears me from a UCSD course, can I still take the course and get credit for it?

If you retake a course at UCSD that you already have credit for, you will NOT receive units or GPA for that repeated course.


Transcripts and Transfer Coursework

How do I send my high school and/or college transcripts to UCSD?

Request to have your transcript(s) sent to the UCSD Admissions Office

9500 Gilman Drive
Mail Code 0021
La Jolla, CA 92093-0021


How do I check to see if my transfer credit (AP/IB or transfer work) has been received?

Please visit the Admissions website to for information and deadlines. Go to "my application" to see what items have been completed. 

UCSD Admissions Office will post test scores and/or transfer credit to your Academic History.  

If you have further questions, please email or call the Admissions Office directly (858) 534-4831 - option 9 to speak with an Admissions Officer.


If I took courses elsewhere and it’s not posted to my records yet, but I need it to enroll in a course for Fall, how do I get access to enroll in that course for Fall?

First of all, make sure your transcript(s) has been sent to the UCSD Admissions Office.  If received by UCSD Admissions Office, follow up with them to see when they can post your transfer credit.  If your transcript is pending receipt or pending posting, submit an Enrollment Authorization System (EASy) request to the academic department to allow enrollment.


I was admitted as freshman to UCSD. If I have an IGETC Certification, can I use it?

No, the IGETC program, Partial IGETC program, and all other transfer agreements apply exclusively to students admitted as Transfers. These programs do not apply to students admitted as Freshmen. All students admitted as Freshmen will need to meet ERC General Education requirements.


If I took a GE course at a California Community College, does that mean I can transfer the credits I earned for that class to UCSD and that I don’t have to take this particular class once I am at UCSD?

The Community College course must be UC transferable.  Use the website to check if your course is UC transferable and is articulated to a course at UCSD.  If the course is articulated to a specific UCSD course, then you do not have to retake it.  If the course is not articulated, then you will need to petition the course to the appropriate academic department at UCSD.


Does the Community College GPA transfer as well or does it "restart"?

Your UCSD GPA will only include courses taken at UCSD or another UC. GPAs from other institutions, such as community college or other higher education institution, will not be included in your UCSD GPA. You will only receive units for the courses you take from a community college or other higher education institution, if they are UC transferrable.


Entry Level Writing Requirement (ELWR) and Analytical Writing Placement Exam (AWPE)


What happens if I fail the Analytical Writing Placement Exam (AWPE) test for the Entry Level Writing Requirement (ELWR)?

If you do not pass the AWPE, you are instructed to enroll immediately in an Analytical Writing Program (AWP) course—either AWP 1 or AWP 2A-2B. You must enroll in your AWP course during your first quarter of residence at UCSD. Be sure to enroll before classes have met for the second time the course meets.  If you miss this enrollment, you will have to forfeit one of the quarters allotted to you for fulfilling the Entry Level Writing Requirement.


Can I re-take the Analytical Writing Placement Exam (AWPE)?

No you can only take it once.


How am I exempt from the placement test?

You can meet the requirement through one of the methods listed on the AWP website.


I will not be taking the AWPE until September which probably means I won't get the results until after class enrollments have happened.  How do I choose my English class for the Fall?

Enroll in a GE course while you wait to take the AWPE in September.  If you place in either AWP 1 or AWP 2A, then drop the GE course, and enroll in AWP.  


Math Placement Exam (MPE)

If I want to take the basic Chem/Math class, do I need to take the placement exam?

Students who have AP Calculus and/or Chemistry credit, do not need to take a placement exam (AP/IB Chart).  If no AP credit, then students who plan to enroll in a Math course at UCSD, must take a Math Placement Exam in order to take a Math course.  A student will be unable to enroll in a Math course until there is a placement on the student record.  For students who want to take a Chemistry course, no placement is needed to enroll however, it is highly encouraged to take the online placement exam to find out proper placement of course.


Is the Math Placement Exam (MPE) only offered on campus?  What is we live out of state?

UCSD offers an online MPE option for a fee in addition to on campus exams (free).  Students will need to register for the MPE on the Math Testing website:


 Can I register for a Math class before I get my Math Placement Exam (MPE) results?

No, you will need to have the MPE results before enrolling in a Math course (assuming you do not have AP nor transfer Math credit).


Do I have to enroll in the class that I’m placed in, or can I choose regardless of the result?

You will need to enroll in the course you are placed.


I don’t need Chemistry/Math for my major (nor am I pre-health), but do I still need to take the Math Placement Exam (MPE)?

No, you do not need to take the MPE since your major does not require Math or Chemistry.  Check the “Majors Requiring Mathematics” webpage to see if your major requires Math.  We recommend Undeclared majors to take the MPE to allow options for possible majors.  If you are pre-health, then you should take the MPE.


Language GE Requirement

If I am starting a brand new language, should I still take the language placement exam?

No, you can start in the first course if you have no prior knowledge.  For Chinese and Japanese specifically, you will need to speak with the department advisor to see if the first course is appropriate to enroll in.


Where can we find a list of languages that we can take as beginners to fulfill the ERC language requirement?

Visit the ERC General Education website to find the list of languages UCSD offers.


If we are fluent in a specific language, can we just take the proficiency exam and would that satisfy the foreign language requirement for ERC?

Yes. For more information visit the Linguistics Department to learn more.


Enrolling in Classes and Enrollment Times

Will our appointed times to select classes be given at random?

Appointment times are randomly assigned for all new students entering Fall quarter.


What website do we go on to sign up for classes?

Webreg. (See the full tutorial)


What happens if you miss your enrollment time?

Your appointment time starts and ends at a given date, so if you “miss” the start of your allotted time, you may enroll in classes until your time ends. Try to register as close to when it begins as possible. Keep in mind that appointment dates/times are based on Pacific Standard Time (PST).


What if I’m out of the country when my enrollment appointment time begins?

You can still register for classes during your appointment time, given you have internet access.  Keep in mind that appointment dates/times are based on Pacific Standard time (PST).  Try to enroll as close to when the appointment begins as possible.


Fall Courses and Course Recommendations

Do I have to take the classes that are recommended, or I'm allowed to take any classes that I want?

Courses are recommended based on the information you provided (major interest, AP/IB credit, transfer credit, or pre-health), so an ERC Counselor carefully reviewed your record to recommend courses to keep you on track towards graduation.  You can take other lower division courses (courses numbered 1-99) not recommended, but make sure you are referring to your major’s academic year plan.


If I change my major after my recommended courses are given to me, how can I get recommended classes for my new major?

Contact the ERC Counselors at (858) 534-9864 to inform them of your major change.  Students can officially change into a non-capped major (TritonLink > TritonLink Tools > Advising Tools > Major and Minor) after they enroll in Fall quarter courses.


How many classes do I need to take per quarter?

We recommend you enroll in four classes your first quarter.  This gives you room in your schedule to drop to three classes if you are overwhelmed or do not like a class. 12 units is considered full time.


What classes would be best for someone who is undeclared for their first quarter?

Undeclared students are generally recommended to take at least one or two major exploration courses with one or two general education (GE) requirements during their first quarter at UCSD.


How many classes do I take per quarter?

We recommend taking four classes in your first quarter.  This gives you room in your schedule to drop to three classes (12 units), if you are overwhelmed or do not like a class. 


Does one choose classes for just Fall Quarter or the whole year?

You enroll in classes per quarter.


I've researched classes I want to take, and almost all of them are full, how am I able to enroll in classes?

If you are waitlisted in a course(s) for the Fall, then we strongly discourage waitlisting unless you absolutely need the class.  Make sure you are enrolled in at least 12 units.

Please consult the Schedule of Classes again to be sure there are NO open sections that fit in your schedule.  It is wiser to enroll in a course at a less than desirable time than to waitlist.  If you have waitlisted a GE course, you can choose another course from the GE Sheet that has available seats.

If waitlisting is your only option for a course, you need to check your UCSD email account for updated course information or look at for other open courses.  Some enrollment adjustments will be made over the next few weeks after enrollment (by academic departments), yet there is no guarantee you will get into a class for which you are waitlisted, especially if there are available seats in other section(s).


What is the difference between DI and LE meeting type classes?

LE stands for Lecture and DI stands for Discussion (also referred to as section).  The Lecture is the main part of a course that is headed by a Professor, while the discussion is a smaller group setting lead by a teaching assistant or an instructional assistant. When signing up for classes, you must enroll in both parts of a class.  Note: LA are labs and FI is the final schedule.


Major and Double Major

When can I declare a major if I am undeclared?

You can declare a non-capped major (see capped majors) once you are enrolled in courses using the major/minor tool on TritonLink. You will need to enroll in courses and pay fees for Fall before being able to use this tool.


How can I change my declared major?

Once you are enrolled in Fall courses, you can declare or change your major (for non-capped majors) online here.


The major I applied for but was not accepted was capped, what does that mean? Can I still pursue the major?

Capped majors have a limit number of students allowed in the major.  There are screening criteria students must meet before declaring a capped major.  Non-capped majors can enroll in the screening courses.


When/How can you declare a second major?

See an ERC Academic Counselor for more information or read “How to Declare a Double Major” website.  Note: You can declare the double major when you have between 90-135 units, and have completed at least 50% of the lower division for the second majors.


Where can I find my major requirements?

Visit either the major department’s website or visit the UCSD Catalog:



Getting Academic Advising

When can I meet with a College Counselor or Major Advisor?

New incoming students can meet with an ERC Counselor starting “Week 0 or Welcome Week”.  To view our Walk-In Advising hours, visit our Academic Advising webpage.  We do not meet with new students prior to Week 0.  In the middle of August (3rd week or so), students will be able to communicate online with an ERC Counselor via the New Student Site (major advising will not be available through the New Student Site).

To contact you major advisor, you will need to reach out to them by email or by phone to find out when you can meet with a major advisor.



Studying Abroad

How soon should I start planning for studying abroad? And where do I go?

You should begin researching on the different study abroad programs (EAP and OAP) that best fit your needs.  Study abroad forms are due at least three quarters (1 year or so) before the departing term.  For more information contact the Study Abroad Office.



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