ArcGIS Desktop and Pro

  • Ten workstations in the Collaboratory have ArcGIS Desktop 10.8.1, ArcGIS Pro 2.7, and access to our entire Spatial Data Collection.  The Collaboratory also offers QGIS.
  • All Letters & Sciences Collaborate Labs have ArcGIS 10.8  When not scheduled for classes, all labs are open for general student use.  During the COVID-19 pandemic, LSIT is able to create an AWS App Stream for classes that require Esri GIS software.  Contact LSIT for details.
  • Various teaching labs in Geography, Earth Sciences, Bren, and other departments have ArcGIS.  Inquire with your department.

Getting the software

Several UCSB entities contribute to a university-wide site license for the Esri suite of GIS software. Several different options are available, depending on your departmental affiliations and how you want to use the software.

For your own machine

All students, staff, and faculty at UCSB are eligible for a license to ArcGIS for their personal computers.  Fill out this form from a UCSB email address to request your license and download the software. Installation instructions for ArcGIS Desktop (ArcMap) and ArcPro can be found here. Licenses for ArcMap last until July and need to be renewed annually. ArcPro licenses are tied to users UCSB NetIDs and need to be authorized once before use. 

The 12-month license should not be used on UCSB-owned computers, unless there is a special circumstance. 

Within 2-3 business days of submitting the form, we will send you a license file and link to an installer for ArcMap Desktop 10.8 or ArcPro 2.7

If you have any questions please email

For UCSB-owned hardware

If you are affiliated with one of the site-license contributors listed below: please contact your local technical support for access to Esri software. 

  • Bren School: Brad Hill
  • Earth Research Institute: Darla Sharp
  • National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis: Mark Schildhauer
  • Marine Science Institute: Jim Woods
  • UCSB Library: Jon Jablonski
  • Facilities Management: Paul Bartsch

Letters & Sciences Departments:

ArcGIS Online

All users with UCSB NetIDs have access to ArcGIS Online, a platform for creating and sharing maps, mapping applications, and data. More infomation.

On the Server

Esri's server-side applications are all available for campus use.  AWS and Azure both support ArcGIS Server products.  Please contact the Collaboratory for information about Esri server software.

Getting support

We have a page of troubleshooting tips for some common issues with ArcGIS Desktop. The Library has a number of GIS training manuals and workbooks available as part of its collection--both print and e-book editions.  Search UC Library Search.

Esri Training

Esri provides access to all of its online training materials as part of our campus site license.  Signing on to ArcGIS Online for the first time gives you access to anything marked "Requires Maintenance" in Esri's catalog.

Contact the Interdiciplinary Research Collaboratory

The Collaboratory is available for basic Esri support, especially for issues involving installing 12-month licenses.  We are happy to get you started using ArcGIS for desktop, help you to choose a Virtual Campus class, and to identify data from our collections or on the Internet to help you complete your mapping and spatial analysis projects.  Please email us at

Campus GIS Discussion List

The Collaboratory runs an email listserv to discuss GIS issues. You may also be interested in our page describing GIS activities in the Library and around campus.