If you have technical or course-specific questions, please email the instructor or Area Director of your program.
Current Student FAQs
If you have technical or specific course questions, please email the Area Director of your program.
All UCLA students are held to the guidelines written in the Standards & Procedures for Graduate Study at UCLA. You may find the full document here: https://grad.ucla.edu/gasaa/library/spfgs.pdf
What features are available on MyUCLA?
MyUCLA provides the easiest way to gain real-time access to academic, financial, and personal records. MyUCLA takes you through various functions, whether it be to view your study list, check your BruinBill, change your contact information, view your term grades, or order transcripts.
How do I enroll?
Please log-on to MyUCLA to self-enroll in courses for the upcoming term.
Why did I receive a prerequisite error?
Where do I order textbooks?
When will lectures be posted?
Generally, lectures will be posted on Mondays and/or Wednesdays during the quarter. In some cases, lectures will be made available earlier. Please refer to your course syllabus and announcements via CCLE.
What are my testing options for the midterm and final examinations?
Midterms and final exams are held on Saturdays, per the dates listed on the MSOL Academic Calendar. If you are taking your exam off-campus, you may schedule it on Friday (the day before the official exam date). No approval is necessary.
If you require an alternative test date, you must e-mail your instructor directly to seek permission (approval is at the sole discretion of the instructor and is not guaranteed). If an alternative date is granted, please forward the approval to: at least two weeks prior to an exam. It is the student’s responsibility to inform the MSOL Office of any changes/special accommodations etc. as the MSOL Office releases exams directly to the proctors (not the instructor or TA).
For more information about exam options, please visit the MSOL exam information page.
Who do I notify regarding which option(s) I choose?
Regardless if you are testing on/off campus, all students must submit a SEA Form via e-mail (with a digital or handwritten signature) to at least two weeks prior to their first exam OR if there is a change in their proctor/exam option. The last used proctor on file will remain as the student’s default option (unless otherwise notified via a new SEA Form).
What does continuous registration mean?
Under the Standards and Procedures for Graduate Study at UCLA (pg 35)
Unless granted a formal leave of absence (LOA), graduate students are expected to register every term, including the term in which their degree or certificate is to be awarded. A student must be registered in order to take any University examination.
This means that you may not drop to zero units unless you have an approved LOA on file by week 2. The only way to drop to zero units is to withdraw from UCLA.
Failure of students to register as required will constitute presumptive evidence that they have withdrawn without leave from the Graduate Division, and that to be readmitted, they must apply formally in competition with all other applicants for admission.
What is the withdrawal policy?
Please visit http://www.registrar.ucla.edu/Registration-Classes/Registration-and-Payment/Withdrawal for detailed information about UCLA’s withdrawal policy.
If you are considering withdrawing from the MSOL Program, please contact our office for further consultation.
LEAVE OF ABSENCE (LOA)
Am I eligible for a Leave of Absence?
A leave of absence may be granted by the Graduate Division to continuing graduate students in good standing (minimum 3.0 GPA) who have completed at least one quarter in graduate status at UCLA. Please read the Leave of Absence Policy here: https://grad.ucla.edu/academics/graduate-study/leave-of-absence-request/
How long is a Leave of Absence?
A leave is normally granted for periods of one to three quarters. Leaves may be extended in certain circumstances, ex. military deployment on the recommendation of the department to Graduate Division.
When is the deadline to request an LOA?
All leaves must be requested before the end of the second week of the quarter in which the leave of absence or extension of leave of absence is to begin. Deadlines are published for each quarter in the Academic Term Calendar.
Do I have to request an LOA for the summer?
No, a leave of absence is not required for the summer session.
A leave of absence request is always required for fall, winter, and spring terms.
What if I request an LOA for a quarter I have already paid for? Will I get a refund?
If registration fees have been paid for the quarter in which the leave is to begin, it is at the student’s discretion to drop the course or remain enrolled as they await the LOA decision. *Whether your LOA request is approved or denied, a refund can be given if a course is dropped by the Friday of Week 6. If you have not received a decision regarding your LOA by at least Week 5, please contact our office immediately for further consultation.
*Please note: the only way to drop a course (if you are dropping to zero units) is to withdraw from the program.
Separate from tuition fees, Graduate Student Study List Deadlines and Changes and fees can be found here: http://www.registrar.ucla.edu/Fees-Residence/Course-and-Study-List-Fees/Graduate-Student-Study-List-Deadlines-and-Fees
What happens if I do not return from a LOA?
If a student fails to return to UCLA (or leaves the university without an official leave of absence) the student must apply for readmission to the program.
Can I defer my student loans when I am on leave?
When a student is on a leave of absence, the Registrar’s Office cannot confirm student status for student loan deferral.
How do I register after returning from a LOA?
If a student is returning from a leave of absence of less than three terms, the student should be able to register for the upcoming term via MyUCLA.
What do I need to do if I return before the end of my leave?
If a student is returning before the end of the period of the leave, the student must notify the Graduate Division and the Registrar’s Office at least six weeks prior to the beginning of the term in which the student plans to register. Failure to give at least six weeks notice will result in liability for any and all late registration/late enrollment fees assessed by the Registrar’s Office.
Are there any restrictions for international students on a Leave of Absence?
International students on non-immigrant visas (F-1 or J-1) may not remain in the United States while on a leave of absence unless:
- a written statement is provided to the Office of International Students and Scholars from an academic adviser certifying that the student will be conducting degree-related research equivalent to a full course of study during the leave; or
- they provide evidence of a serious illness of their own (not that of a family member) that prevents attendance at UCLA.
The Graduate Division will not approve a leave of absence that is not in compliance with Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (BICE) policy governing international student visas.
If I am on a LOA, can I use university facilities?
Students on LOA may use the UCLA library and maintain access to digital services by paying the public user fee.
FINANCIAL INFORMATION / MSOL REFUND POLICY
What is the estimated cost of the program?
Each course is $4,200 (The fee for the 9-course program is $37,800).
How do I pay for the MSOL Program?
All students are assigned a BruinBill account. Your BruinBill records all charges and payments associated with registration, along with other service charges that may be assessed to students. Accounts are administered electronically (eBill); paper statements are issued by request only via Student Accounts. You are encouraged to check your BruinBill balance through MyUCLA on the first business day of each month. You may receive monthly email reminders prior to payment deadlines, provided you have a valid e-mail address established through MyUCLA.
You may find the UCLA fee payment deadlines at http://registrar.ucla.edu/Calendars/Overview. If you need to drop a class or withdraw from the term, contact immediately. If registration fees are not paid in full by the payment deadline, a $50 late registration fee is automatically assessed and classes are dropped in accordance with the drop class deadline.
I took out a student loan. What does SAP mean?
Please visit this link to learn about Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP), quarterly unit requirements and withdrawals.
What steps do I take if my employer is directly paying UCLA for my fees?
Sponsorships are tuition payment agreements where the organization (e.g., your employer) agrees to pay the student’s tuition. This requires an invoice from UCLA in order to pay the tuition fees. For more information, please visit the Third Party Sponsorship Policies and Procedures page.
If you are receiving tuition assistance from the Air Force, Army, Dept. of Air Force Scientist & Engineer Career Program, Naval Air Warfare Center, or Naval Science Department, please email your individual academic plan to: before submitting your voucher to third party sponsors. Receipt of this plan is required to flag your account for tuition assistance.
All other students with payment vouchers should send their documents to: by the term’s due date (please cc our office and include your UID).
Upon receipt of the authorization letter, your BruinBill account will be credited with the appropriate amount. Your fees are posted to the sponsor’s account for invoicing. The invoice will then be sent to the sponsor.
What is the refund policy?
Our refund policy is the only exception to the Registrar’s Term Calendar. As an MSOL Student, you may receive a *full refund up until the 6th week of a given quarter. Thereafter, the following percentages apply:
7th week 50%
8th week 0%
9th week 0%
10th week 0%
*Graduate students can add, drop, change grading basis, or change variable units through the end of the last day of instruction. Fees are assessed through BruinBill after Friday of second week. Although you may be entitled to a refund based on your drop date, you may be subject to transaction fees, which can be found here: http://www.registrar.ucla.edu/Fees-Residence/Course-and-Study-List-Fees/Graduate-Student-Study-List-Deadlines-and-Fees
*SUMMER ENROLLMENT – Per Summer policy: “Deposits are not required for UCLA students. However, the non-refundable processing fee of $150 will be assessed if all courses are dropped regardless of whether instruction has begun.” https://www.summer.ucla.edu/fees
How/when will I receive my refund?
Once a course is dropped via MyUCLA, a refund is automatically initiated.
Refund Methods (You are typically refunded via your original payment method)
If you paid via:
- Credit Card – A refund is issued to the same credit card within a few business days.
- Cash/check – A refund check may take up to 2-3 weeks to generate. Checks are mailed to your official UCLA mailing address, so please ensure that your information is up to date on MyUCLA. If you DO NOT want to receive a paper check in the mail, you may choose to sign up for BruinDirect Refund Deposit.
- Wire transfer (foreign funds) – Please notify MSOL ASAP before dropping your course. A separate process is required to set up a refund to a foreign bank account.
If you have not received a refund within the time frames listed, please contact Student Accounts directly. The best way to reach this department is to send a message via MyUCLA: http://sa.ucla.edu/MessageCenter/OneStop/Home/PostMessage
All refunds are processed by Student Accounts. (MSOL has a limited view of financial information–we do not have access to process transactions).
What if my employer paid for the course? How will they be refunded?
COMPREHENSIVE EXAM REQUIREMENT
How do I satisfy the Comprehensive Exam Requirement?
The Comprehensive Exam Requirement (CER) can be met through one of two ways:
Option 1: Take ENGR 299 Project Course
Work one-on-one with a Faculty Advisor from your area of study on a research topic or project of your choosing. The purpose is to demonstrate the ability to integrate MS course acquired knowledge into a research paper. This project course counts as 1 of 9 required courses for the M.S. degree and is generally taken as your final course in the program.
For detailed information, please visit our Capstone Project Guideline page.
Option 2: Department Course Exam Questions
Take and pass three written exam questions (or the equivalent) from three different graduate-level courses within your area of study. The exam question is held concurrently with the final exam for all graduate-level courses. You do not need to take a separate or additional exam to satisfy the CER.
You may select which final exams you would like to count towards the CER. The exam question (or its equivalent) may be opted into at the time of your final exam.
Can I explore both options for the CER? When do I have to decide?
Yes! You may opt to answer the Comprehensive Exam question for select graduate-level courses and still decide (by at least your sixth course) to take ENGR 299 as your final course in the program.
Do I have to tell you which option I am choosing?
No. We do not need to know which option you choose in advance, but you will be responsible for ensuring that all major requirements are met.
How do I designate an exam towards the CER?
Typically, your instructor will include instructions on your final exam. For example, the exam cover sheet may contain a box you can check in order to designate that exam toward your Comprehensive Exam progress:
Please note: Each instructor creates his or her own rubric for the Comprehensive Exam, so we encourage you to ask your professor or TA how the CER will be administered in advance.
Our Comprehensive Exam records are based on reports submitted directly by course instructors. Please reach out to your instructors for information regarding grading rubrics or result availability.
What is the requirement for passing a Comprehensive Exam question?
Each instructor creates his or her own rubric for the Comprehensive Exam. Most often, a passed exam question or a certain score on the final exam (or its equivalent) warrants a “Pass or No Pass” result.
We encourage you to ask your professor or TA how the CER will be administered in advance.
Are courses without final exams eligible for the CER?
All graduate courses, excluding ENGR 214 and ENGR 299, are eligible for Comprehensive Exam credit.
Instructors create their own rubric for what is considered a Pass. For example, an instructor may determine that a passing final project is equivalent to a passed final exam question.
We encourage you to ask your professor or TA how the CER will be administered in advance.
How will I know if I passed a Comprehensive Exam question?
Our Comprehensive Exam records are based on reports submitted directly to the MSOL office by course instructors. Please reach out to your instructors for information regarding result availability.
Results typically become available after final grades for the term are submitted. If your instructor has not provided CER results, please wait 2-3 weeks after the term has ended to email our office.
Results are archived within the MSOL office and are audited once you submit your petition for Advancement to Candidacy.
Special note: From Winter 2020 onward, Comprehensive Exam results for 200-level courses are available on CCLE. To view whether you passed the Comprehensive Exam Requirement for a course:
What if I don’t pass a Comprehensive Exam question?
Not to worry! Since you only need a minimum of three (3) passed exam questions, you will have multiple opportunities to seek this credit from remaining graduate-level courses.
What paperwork is required for graduation?
A petition for Advancement to Candidacy is due within the first two weeks of the degree expected term. For detailed information, please visit: https://www.msol.ucla.edu/graduation-info/
Can I participate in the commencement ceremony? When is it?
Absolutely! All MSOL students are welcome to participate in the commencement ceremony. The ceremony is held ONCE a year in mid-June.
This ceremony is organized by the Office of Academic and Student Affairs. Please view this site for eligibility information: https://www.seasoasa.ucla.edu/commencement/
Do I need a BruinCard?
FALL 2020: During COVID-19 measures, the BruinCard office will maintain limited operations. If you are an incoming Fall 2020 student, please see the Carding Procedures page for more information.
Please note that while MSOL students are entitled to receive a BruinCard, priority is given to students who live on-campus and need access to buildings. For specific inquiries, you may contact the BruinCard office via the MyUCLA Message Center.
To all other current students: the MSOL office is working remotely and is unable to pick up your BruinCard at this time. After on-campus operations resume, please refer to the below information.
Obtaining a BruinCard is optional.
The UCLA BruinCard is a student identification card that is used to electronically confirm student status and eligibility for services on campus, such as use of the library. As a student in the M.S. Engineering Online Program, you are not required to come on campus. However, if you plan on using campus services, you will need a BruinCard.
You can apply for a BruinCard by visiting the BruinCard webpage and clicking “Apply for Card” on the left menu. You must have a UCLA logon ID and password to access the online application.
Once you have applied, please forward your confirmation [indicating that your photo has been approved] to the MSOL Office at . Thereafter, we will pick up your BruinCard and mail it to your official UCLA mailing address.
Does the MSOL Program have their own special calendar?
When does the Summer Session begin?
Session A (10-weeks) is generally the third week of June through the end of August.
(While many of our students take courses in the summer, enrollment is not required during the summer session).
Please refer to UCLA Summer Sessions Calendar for more information.
Am I eligible to purchase graduate student medical insurance at UCLA?
Please view the Student Insurance Resources (pdf) by UCLA’s Health Insurance Consultant for other insurance resources.
SHIP (Student Health Insurance Plan) is only assessed to students who receive in-person instruction.
How/when do I transfer courses from UNEX? (UCLA Extension)
If you took an MSOL course prior to being admitted, you will first need to complete one quarter in graduate status before a course is transferred.
After you have completed your first term as an admitted student, please order an official electronic transcript from UCLA Extension. (UCLA and UCLA Extension do not share academic records). When placing your order, please list as the recipient.
Thereafter, please contact our office to obtain a graduate degree petition to transfer the credit. Our office will forward the documents to Graduate Division (where it is processed on your behalf).
Please note: Only a maximum of two courses (with a “B” or better) can be transferred into the MSOL Program.
Can I transfer courses taken during my undergraduate program?
Per the Standards & Procedures for Graduate Study at UCLA (pg 7):
“Courses taken for any other degree previously awarded at UCLA or another institution, and courses taken before the award of the bachelor’s degree may not be applied toward a graduate degree at UCLA.”
Regardless of equivalence, courses taken during your undergraduate program unfortunately cannot be applied to a new degree.