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Undergraduate Admissions

UCSB Engineering is a dynamic, intellectual community where students find inspiration and open doors.

The UC Santa Barbara College of Engineering is consistently ranked among the very best academic and research programs in the world, boasting three Nobel laureates among our renowned faculty. Prospective students will find that UCSB Engineering is a unique environment where students are challenged to excel and prepare for a successful future. We are committed to student success, to timely completion of your degree, and to advancing your career path – from industry connections to graduate school. Our small faculty-to-student ratio and student enrollment make UCSB Engineering feel like a small college community where you can get to know your colleagues, your educators, and find valuable mentors. We offer significant resources and opportunities, such as undergraduate research programs, study abroad tailored to engineers, student organizations, and programs to support your education. 

Pathway to Engineering Undergraduate Admissions

Important Information Before You Begin

All UCSB undergraduates, including engineering majors, follow the same admissions process and timeline. Consistent with the university, the College of Engineering only accepts applications for fall quarter admissions and gives preference to freshmen and upper-division transfer students. Prospective engineering students should expect additional preparation prior to applying, specific to their course of study. Given the strength of our programs and national reputation, acceptance into the College of Engineering is more competitive and exclusive than other majors at UCSB. Applicants with the strongest qualifications are admitted. 

step-by-step guide to UCSB College of Engineering admissions

Step 1: Choose your engineering major

Each applicant must apply to a specific major. Prospective undergraduate students may choose from one our five undergraduate majors: chemical engineering, computer engineering, computer science, electrical engineering, and mechanical engineering. We encourage you to explore our academic majors and programs in-depth. Take this time to fully understand the academic requirements for the BS degree in your major, and how they might compare to other institutions. Review our General Engineering Academic Requirements catalog (GEAR), and check with your selected department’s website for major-specific details.

Step 2: Prepare for admission

Become familiar with the timeline, process, and recommendations for admission based on your student status:

Step 3: Visit UCSB and meet the engineering community

Before or after you apply for admission, we encourage you to visit the UCSB campus and attend campus tours and presentation events. The beautiful natural environment of the UCSB campus and our area of the California coast are part of the UCSB life.

  • Visit UCSB: Website for UCSB tours, open house information, virtual tours, and more. 
  • Attend Spring Insight, UCSB’s annual open house event, including our “Day of Engineering.” RSVP is required for this special event for prospective engineering students held during Spring Insight.
  • Attend prospective engineering student presentations at UCSB, held throughout the spring quarter. RSVP is not required for these presentations.

Step 4: Apply for admission

The University of California admission deadline for freshmen is November 30. The application for admission to UCSB is completed through My UC Application, the common system for all University of California campuses. All incoming undergraduate students, including engineering freshman and transfer students, follow this standardized application process. Find complete information about the admissions timeline and how to apply at the UCSB Office of Admissions:

Additional Information

College of Engineering Honors Program
Engineering Scholarships & Financial Aid
Engineering Study Abroad