At the beginning of each academic year, the department offers a 2-day new student orientation program to incoming graduate students. In this orientation, we attempt to provide you with all the information needed to begin your career as a grad student at UCSD. We have a panel of grad students discuss choosing courses, passing qualifying exams, choosing health insurance for your spouse, housing, parking, etc.

There is a campus-wide orientation, offered by Graduate Division, in addition to a training for teaching assistants.  Lastly, the Senior TA,  provides a department training for teaching assistants. After this training, incoming grad students should be prepared to run discussion sections for a beginning calculus course. Students whose native language is not English must pass an English proficiency exam before they are permitted to work as a TA.

You will be provided with an office assignment, mailbox, computer account, and payroll forms. You will be asked to fill out a number of forms so that we can contact you in case of emergency. All non-California residents need to establish residency within one year to avoid paying nonresident tuition and fees in their second year. The procedure is outlined in this handbook.

During the 2-day orientation, you will have time to arrange a meeting with your assigned faculty advisor who will help you select courses for Fall quarter. The faculty advisor will assist new students in adjusting to the department, as well as with academic planning. In the second or third year, upon selection of a research (thesis) advisor, the initial faculty advisor will be replaced by the student’s research advisor.