Graduate Preparation Program

Graduate students participating in the Graduate Preparation Program

Program Outline

Monday, August 9 - Thursday, September 2 (delivered online)

The Graduate Preparation Program (GPP) is a four-week intensive non-credit course offered prior to the fall quarter which is open to all current and newly admitted international graduate students. It focuses on English for Academic Purposes (EAP), academic skills, and cultural orientation. The program is offered in collaboration with Graduate Division and Global Engagement.

The course offers guided support with:

  • Seminar-style classroom discussion
  • Presentation and oral communication skills  
  • Information on U.S. classroom culture; roles and responsibilities of faculty and peers
  • Critical thinking; using evidence to support ideas
  • Research writing; citation; avoiding plagiarism
  • Collaborative and project-based learning

The Graduate Preparation Program provides a strong foundation to the U.S. classroom environment and university system, in addition to the opportunity to practice and master the language and academic skills needed for success.

The program also supports international graduate students in their role as Teaching Assistants.


The registration deadline is Friday, June 25 for required students and Friday, July 16 for all other students. All F-1 students may register through iGlobal.

  • iGlobal is a secure online portal for the management of international students, scholars, and employee information. Log in using your Cruz ID and password.

  • On the menu on the left-hand side, click on “Global Programming.” You should see the GPP Registration button appear.

If you are unable to access iGlobal to register, please contact us at

Eligibility & Program Participation

This program will ensure that international Teaching Assistants have the language skills and support to succeed in the classroom, which will have an additional positive impact on undergraduate student success.

Students who successfully complete the Graduate Preparation Program will not be required to take the Versant English Placement Test.

For more information on Graduate Division requirements for Teaching Assistant assignments please visit Your department may have additional requirements.

You are required to attend the program if:

  • you are offered a Teaching Assistant position at UC Santa Cruz for the upcoming academic year, AND:
  • you have not passed the IELTS or TOEFL exam with a qualifying score (26 for the iBT sub-score in Speaking; or 8 for the IELTS subscore in Speaking).

Required students will receive an email in May from Global Engagement with program and registration information. Required students should still register for the Graduate Preparation Program; they are not automatically registered. 

You are strongly encouraged to attend the program if:

  • you are interested in obtaining (but not yet offered) a Teaching Assistant position, AND
  • you have not passed the IELTS or TOEFL exam with a qualifying score (26 for the iBT sub-score in Speaking; or 8 for the IELTS subscore in Speaking).


For questions regarding program content, administration, and registration, contact

For questions regarding Teaching Assistantships, contact your department.