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Per the University’s nondiscrimination policies, students and employees are protected from discrimination or harassment based on pregnancy, childbirth, or medical conditions related to pregnancy and childbirth.

Pregnant Student and Employee Rights

  • Pregnant students can participate in classes and extra-curricular activities without submitting a doctor’s note. However, a doctor’s note is required for a medical leave and certain accommodations.
  • Pregnant students and employees are provided the same special services (e.g., excused absences, appropriate academic adjustments, alternative work assignments) as those with temporary disabilities or medical conditions.
  • Student absences due to pregnancy or childbirth should be excused for as long as a doctor says they are medically necessary.
  • Students and employees are entitled to return to the same academic, extracurricular, and employment status that they held before their medical leave began.
  • Instructors may not refuse to allow students to submit work after a deadline missed due to pregnancy or childbirth. Students must also be allowed to make up any participation or attendance credits missed due to pregnancy or childbirth.

Accommodations for Pregnant Students and Employees

Pregnant students and employees are entitled to reasonable accommodations. Contact the Title IX Office, Disabled Students Program, or Workplace Accommodations Specialist (in Human Resources) for assistance accessing accommodations. Examples of reasonable accommodations include:

  • Academic: alternative testing times/locations, note-taking assistance, frequent breaks during class and testing for restroom/lactation needs;
  • Facility access: lactation rooms, campus overnight lockers, elevator access;
  • Housing: the opportunity to apply for Family Housing; and
  • Employment: modified work duties, appropriate seating, frequent breaks for restroom/lactation needs.


  • It’s a good idea to keep notes about your pregnancy-related absences and any instances of potential discrimination or harassment.
  • To make a report of potential discrimination or harassment, submit a report to the Title IX Office via the Title IX Office webform.
  • To file a grievance with the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR), submit a report at www.ed.gov/ocr/complaintintro.html within 180 days of when the discrimination took place. You can submit a grievance with OCR even if you have not filed a complaint with UCSB’s Title IX Office.
  • Visit the Community & Government Resources page for information about filing a grievance with other state and federal agencies.