FAQ's for Summer & Fall 2020

Click here for up-to-date information on the latest information pertaining to coronavirus at UCI. Click here for information from the Registrar's Office. Click here for information from the School of Social Ecology.

Frequently Asked Questions 
We will continue to update this page as we learn more from UCI leadership.

For an up-to-date list of FAQ's on Field Study, click here.

*Last updated August 6th at 10:00am*

How do I change my summer course grading mode? 

Please visit this website for more information and deadlines. 

You will need to fill out and submit this form. Social Ecology does NOT require you to get a signature on the required form. Once filled out, please email it to Summer Session via the instructions listed on their website under "For Course Change Requests (Adds/Drops/Grade Changes) Requiring Approval". 


A Note From the International Center in response to International Students taking classes online Fall 2020: 

The message below went out to all new international students  on Tuesday, August 4. 

All international students (new and continuing with travel plans) will be provided a letter by International Center.

Also FAQs on the International Center website have been updated and will continue to be updated as needed.

Dear New Student:

On Friday, July 24th, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued new guidance to universities for new international students (including transfer students) who are currently outside the U.S. The guidance relates to entry into the U.S. and enrollment in in-person and online courses for the Fall 2020 quarter. On the basis of this guidance, and in light of possible consequences to your F-1 nonimmigrant status, the UCI International Center is providing you with the following important updated instructions and information for students who are beginning their academic degree program as it relates to your intention to enter the U.S. and enroll in classes for the Fall 2020 at UCI:

  • The guidance stipulates that new students entering the U.S. for Fall 2020 cannot enroll in a full course of study that is 100% online. If you plan to enter the U.S. for fall 2020 as a new student you will be required to enroll in at least one in-person course.

UCI International Center will issue or re-issue your I-20 to confirm UCI’s plans to offer a combination of in-person and remote              instruction and research experiences. Accordingly, as a new student, we advise that unless you will enroll in at least one course that is in-person for the Fall 2020, you should not enter the U.S., even if you have a visa, and instead you should plan to enroll in classes while remaining outside the U.S.

  • New Transfer or Change of Level Students - The current DHS guidance allows fully online instruction for new transfer or change of level students who were in the U.S. as of March 9, 2020 and will continue to remain in the U.S. to begin the Fall 2020. New transfer or change of level students who have departed the U.S., and plan to re-enter again to begin Fall 2020 are subject to the in-person enrollment requirement. 


  • If you plan to enter the U.S. for Fall 2020, even with an updated I-20 that verifies UCI’s plans to offer a combination of in-person and remote instruction and research experiences, UCI cannot guarantee that a visa will be issued or that you will be allowed entry into the U.S. There is also risk that UCI may need to change plans based on local health conditions. It is unclear what the impact will be on your ability to lawfully enter and remain in the country if we do not ultimately offer in-person instruction during the quarter.  Additionally, the DHS guidance makes provisions for schools to switch their instructional plans due to local health conditions. But there is uncertainty regarding the situation for new students when a school, due to local health conditions, may not be able to engage in in-person instruction for the entire duration of the quarter even though it planned hybrid instructional model. In this situation, you would be unable to fulfill the in-person course requirement and it is unclear what impact this will have on your future F-1 nonimmigrant status.

Should you make the decision to enter the U.S. for Fall, we will provide you with an updated I-20 and a letter of support that you can print and provide to a Consular official when applying for a visa or a Customs and Border Protection official at the port of entry if needed. 

We are in an unprecedented situation, conditions change over time, and the future is unpredictable. Although there are a lot of unknowns, we want to be as transparent as possible with you based on what we do know. As we learn more, we will share that information so that you can make an informed choice. As always, you are advised to consult with your family and others who can assist you in making this important decision as to whether you should travel to the U.S. at this time. Finally, no matter when you choose to join us, we look forward to welcoming you to UCI.


Anna C. Wimberly
Director, International Center


Will I still get to speak with an academic advisor? How will services change?

  • Yes! We are still here for you! We have UPGRADED our services to meet your needs in light of these changes. We adapted our advising services to be in line with "social distancing" to protect you, while continuing to provide you with high quality acadmic advising. You can now get academic advice through: chat, zoom, phone appointments, or email- see below for details. In other words, we've got you.


How can I meet with a counselor while also being safe and practicing "social distancing"?

  • We have made all of our services consistent with "social distancing"
  • Instead of same-day appointments, we have set up Zot Chat! This feature is available Tuesday & Thursday from 9 am to 11:40 am and 1 pm to 3:40 pm. This is a live chat session with a Social Ecology Undergraduate Advisor. If an advisor isn't available to chat right away, you may be asked to try again later. We are working to make this transition as smooth as possible and we appreciate your patience while we navigate new technology. 
  • If you have a previously scheduled appointment, you will be contacted at your UCI email in order to set up a Virtual Meeting with a counselor via Zoom or given the option to have a phone appointment with a counselor. 
    • You do not have to download anything in order to join a Virtual Meeting via Zoom. You can join the Zoom Virtual Meeting via the URL in the email from your counselor.

  • When you are booking an advanced appointment with a counselor, you will be asked to provide your phone number. In addition to your phone number, you have the opportunity to indicate if you want to make it a phone appointment. You will be sent information via email on joining a Virtual Meeting at the time of your appointment.


If I select Phone Appointment will you call me or do I call the office?

  • You will receive an email with information on how to connect with your counselor at the time of your appointment.


Can you answer my questions via email?

  • We will do our best! Please email sepeer@uci.edu with your questions. If we are unable to help via email, we will provide you with the link to book an appointment with a counselor.


Without same day appointments, will you have enough appointments to meet with us?

  • We will do our very best! Our goal is to continue to provide you with our advising services to the best of our abilities during this transition. We appreciate your patience while we navigate this transition. In order to better serve our students, our advanced appointments will be shortened to 20 minutes. This will allow us to have more availability for all of our counselors to meet with you virtually or via phone call. 

What does this mean for Field Study?

Will I need a parking permit?

Since all of our Fall 2020 classes are remote, can I register for courses that are at the same time? Will the Schedule of Classes be updated to reflect that courses are online?

  • Nope. Courses are being transitioned to being taught remotely. This means that, depending on your instructor, at the day/time that your classes are scheduled, you may be watching your instructor give the lesson plan for that day. Online courses have a very specific format, so we don't want you to think that Fall 2020 remote courses will be like any previous online courses you have taken at UCI. 

But since all courses are remote and don't have classroom capacity, you can help me enroll beyond the course max right?

  • Course maximums are set due to classroom restrictions but they are also set with faculty and TA capacity in mind. A faculty member can only grade so many assignments and work with so many students per quarter depending on their course load and research. We will NOT be exceeding course maximums for Fall 2020.

How do I add more units for Summer 2020?

  • Email in your Enrollment form or Course Change Form . Per Summer Session: Please do not write in any credit card information or your social security number. Please be sure to write in your email address and your phone number. After we receive your form and process it, we will call you for your payment information. Please attach your form to this email with the approval for the extra units.

    Email it to summer-session@uci.edu.

    If you have any further questions about Summer Session, feel free to email us at (summer-session@uci.edu) or call us at (949)824-6494

What if I don't have WiFi?

  • Here is a directory of free WiFi hotspots.
  • Here is the OIT link that will continually update free and discounted broadband options.

What do I do if I have transcripts or a UC IGETC to send in from another institution?

  • Your institution may send UCI Undergraduate Admissions your transcript or UC IGETC electronically through Parchment or eScrip. We are unable to accept screenshots of transcripts or UC IGETCs or emails sent to our office with these documents – they must go through UCI Undergraduate Admissions. Please contact your institution's Registrar’s office for more information about how to send these electronically.
    • Freshmen, see here.
    • Transfers, see here

Can I take my School/Major Courses P/NP?

  • Yes, for Spring 2020 & Summer 2020 only. Our counselors will be updating DegreeWorks to reflect these courses taken after grades post for Spring quarter; no action will be needed on the student's part.

Can I take my Change of Major requirements P/NP and use them to change into a new major in the School of Social Ecology?


We understand that all of this uncertainty can be very overwhelming. We will do the best we can to work with you to alleviate your concerns about your academics. Your health should be your number one priority. Take care of yourself and visit the Student Health and Wellness Center if you feel ill. For more information on how to manage stress related to the COVID-19 outbreak, please click here. Do not hesitate to reach out to Counseling Services if you would like more support.