Student Services

Biola recognizes that education does not take place exclusively in the classroom; rather, the individual student is viewed as a "whole person." We are committed to contributing to student development in the social, personal, physical and spiritual areas of life, as well as that of the intellect. Toward that end, a number of departments and programs are devoted to student development. The Division of Student Development is responsible for programs and services for both residential and commuter students. Also, it is involved in such areas as:

  • career planning
  • chapel programming and accountability
  • housing placement; discipline
  • spiritual and character formation
  • leadership development and advisement to student organizations
  • learning skills development
  • services to students with disabilities
  • international student services

The Auxiliary Services Department is responsible for the business management of the residence halls and apartments, food services, health services, the bookstore, computer store, ID cards, the duplicating center, fitness center, and the swimming pool.

Residence Life

The residence halls and apartments are more than a place for students to sleep and study. We also see the halls and apartments as a place for students to develop in all areas of life. For this reason programs and staff are available to provide an environment for such growth. The residence halls and apartments are an exciting and challenging place to live. Resident Directors and Resident Advisors, or Resident Coordinators, are available in each hall to serve as a resource for students.

Residence Halls

Rooms accommodate two to three students and are equipped with individual study desks, single beds, closet space, chest of drawers, bookshelves, and a wastebasket. Each residence hall has laundry rooms equipped with card-operated washing machines and dryers. Residents receive a laundry card the first time they check into housing.

Students are expected to supply their own linens (sheets, pillowcases, towels, blankets, and pillows), School supplies, decor including desk lamps, laundry supplies and personal toiletries. No cooking equipment is allowed in the residence hall rooms except in kitchen facilities (excluding apartments). Additional information may be found in the Housing Handbook at http://studentlife.biola.edu/housing/housing-handbook.

Housing for Graduate Students

Biola owns and leases houses and apartments in the local community to provide housing for single and married graduate students. Some units are furnished and provide housing for single graduates at a per person, per month rate which is based on the number of occupants per bedroom. Unfurnished one- and two-bedroom units located in three complexes near campus provide housing for couples and singles at a per apartment, per month rate. For information on availability, locations and rates contact Auxiliary Services at grad.housing@biola.edu or at (562) 944-0351, ext. 5814.

Residency Requirements

Students under 20 years old by the first day of Fall classes are required to live on campus for the entire academic year, unless commuting from home. Students commuting from home are required to complete the online "Request to Commute" application located in MyHousing within my.Biola.edu. Students enrolled in less than 12 credits are not required to live on campus. Incoming students 20 years and older or with less than 12 credits may live in residence halls or apartments on a space-available basis. Students who turn age 20 during the academic year are not permitted to cancel their Housing Contract and move off-campus to non-Biola Housing, unless electing to move to their parents' home, in which case cancellation fees will apply. See the Contract Cancellation section of the Housing Handbook. Requests for exceptions are to be directed in writing to the Residence Exception Committee, care of the Housing Office in Student Development. All students living in undergraduate residence halls are required to participate in the food service program.

All University undergraduate residence halls will be closed over the Christmas holiday.

Housing Reservation

Once University applicants have paid the $300 enrollment deposit, they will pay the $250 Housing Deposit at the same online location they paid their enrollment deposit. Housing applicants must pay the housing deposit in order to access the online housing application located on my.Biola.edu.

Applicants who have paid the Housing deposit but decide not to attend Biola or obtain exemption from the residence requirement may request a refund of this deposit by contacting the Housing Department in writing (undergrad.housing@biola.edu). The Housing Department must receive this notification by the deadlines listed below. Failure to notify the Housing Department by the designated dates will result in forfeiture of the deposit.

Fall applicant deposit refund deadline:

  • Incoming students: July 1
  • Continuing students: prior to selecting/being assigned a room

Spring applicant deposit refund deadline:

  • Any new housing applicant: January 15

Once the contract year begins, incoming students will be considered continuing students.

Continuing residents must have a $250 Housing Deposit balance. This deposit will be considered refundable if residents fulfill the Housing Contract for the full duration of the contract year. Refunded deposits will be credited to the student's University account balance within three months of the fulfillment of the contract.

The $250 housing deposit will be kept by the University to hold a space in on-campus housing until such a time as the student withdraws, graduates, or fulfills the academic year housing contract. Residents who do not fulfill the academic year housing contract will forfeit their housing deposit. In the case of withdrawal, the student must submit a written request for refund of the housing deposit to the Housing Office by the deadlines listed above, otherwise the housing deposit will be forfeited.

Continuing Students

Procedure for Reserving Campus Housing

Continuing on-campus students desiring to reserve on-campus housing for the Fall must sign up for the room of their choice according to the reservation schedule in the Spring. Commuter students desiring to live on campus need to contact the Housing Manager.

Commuter Students

Students who live off campus are a valued and important part of the Biola community. The Department of Commuter Life serves Biola's Off-Campus Community members via special Orientation Events, Off-Campus Housing Services, Good Morning OCC!, the weekly OCC Update, Commuter Lockers, OCC Events and the Collegium, our home-away-from-home for off-campus students, located centrally in the upper Student Union. The Commuter Life Team—Director, Associate Director, Coordinator, and 25–30 peer leaders—work together to facilitate connection within Biola's vibrant campus community, as well as connection to valuable campus and local community resources. We want off-campus students to be community-connected, resource-connected, and information-connected, thriving spiritually, emotionally, relationally, and academically throughout their time at Biola.

Additional resources are available for students through the Commuter Life website: studentlife.biola.edu/commuter.

Food Service

Biola provides excellent food service for all students. A wide variety of entrees, sandwiches, soups, fresh fruits, bread, beverages, and desserts is offered. The food service staff will work out individual programs for students with special dietary requirements or weight reduction programs prescribed by a physician.

A variety of meal plans are available. All students living in the residence halls are required to choose either a 10 without flex or 10-, 12-, 15- or 20-flex meal plan (the numbers indicated are meals per week), or a 175 block plan. A "flex" plan is 10, 12, 15, or 20 meals per week at Cafe Biola, our dining room, plus "flex dollars" to purchase additional meals at any of our retail operations including Cafe Biola, the Eagles' Nest, Common Grounds, the coffee cart, The Talon Grab N Go, Soaring Eagle Food Truck, Heritage Cafe, and North Hall Cafe. To add or change a meal plan, go to my.Biola.edu and log into MyHousing. To purchase student dollars go to biola.edu/eaccounts. Student dollars can be used for printing/copying (in the library and other locations on campus) and for dining.

Commuter students or students who reside in the Biola apartments have further meal plan options. Please see the following website: http://studenthub.biola.edu/eating-on-campus/dining-locations for more details.

Biola Print Shop

The Biola Print Shop, located on the South Campus, is available to students, staff, faculty and the public. The duplicating center has high-speed duplicating equipment and can do a variety of jobs, including thermal binding, tabs, covers, color copying, color posters and banners, etc. We will match any price. There is also an after-hours drop box located outside of the duplicating center. We will do projects for non-Biola people as well.

Biola Store

The Biola Store is open Monday through Saturday for the convenience of the students, faculty, staff and public. All required and recommended textbooks, as well as general books and supplies, are available. The store has a large selection of Christian books and offers Bibles in a variety of styles and bindings at substantial discounts. The Biola Store carries insignia clothing and school spirit merchandise, a large selection of greeting cards, school supplies, dorm-room furniture/accessories, gift items, theme park tickets and music are available for purchase. The Biola Store welcomes special orders via its 1-800-MY-BIOLA phone line. A convenience store (located inside the bookstore) contains a generous selection of soft drinks, juices, yogurts, ice cream, snacks, candies, sandwiches, etc.. During school breaks and vacations the store has shortened hours. Please call (562) 903-4883 for information or visit our website: biolastore.com.

Health Services

Services

The Student Health Center provides acute, ambulatory health services for all enrolled Biola University students regardless of insurance status. The facility is located adjacent to the library. Consultation with a physician or a nurse is free; however, there are assigned fees for medications or specific treatments. There is no third party billing service available. Payment is required at the time of each visit by cash, check or credit card. Student Health Center fees are not payable through student account billing. Children's services are not available at the Student Health Center. Consult the Health Center's website: biola.edu/health-center for specific hours of operation and other information.

Insurance Requirement

Health insurance is required of all students enrolled in 7 or more La Mirada campus credits and/or with living arrangements in housing with a residence life program. All students that qualify under this requirement are automatically enrolled in the Student Injury and Sickness Insurance Plan and charged all applicable fees. Students that are enrolled in an acceptable private health insurance plan can submit their insurance information to Biola University in order to apply for waiver of the student insurance plan. Students that desire to apply for waiver must do so at the time of enrollment. Guidelines for what is considered acceptable coverage can found at the Student Health Center website: biola.edu/health-center/insurance.

For students that waive coverage, Biola University reserves the right to audit the coverage parameters of any health plan at any time, and to revoke any prior waiver if it is determined that the required conditions are not satisfied.

Unless alternative acceptable coverage is submitted, Biola University reserves the right to enroll students in the Student Injury and Sickness Insurance Plan should coverage submitted under a waiver lapse during the course of an academic year, and students will be charged all applicable fees.

Health Requirements

All students, both undergraduate and graduate, must complete a Meningitis Advisory Form, Medical Health History Form, and Tuberculosis Screening Form. All completed forms should be submitted to the Student Health Center.

All of the above forms are available through the Student Health Center or available via download from the Student Health Center website: biola.edu/health-center. Completed forms may be faxed to the Health Center at (562) 906-4512.

Please check with the Student Health Center staff for assistance or other specific information at (562) 903-4841.

Campus Safety

The Department of Campus Safety is responsible for law enforcement, public safety, and emergency response at Biola University. The department is staffed with professional campus safety officers, skilled administrative personnel, and a dedicated cadre of student employees.

Campus Safety Officers receive extensive training in criminal law and procedure, criminal investigations, evidence collection, traffic management and enforcement, arrest and control tactics, emergency response procedures, First Aid/CPR/AED, and a variety of other related topics. Officers also participate in continual in-service training to maintain state compliance with current statutory law. All officers must complete California Penal Code 832 training as well as certification in the use of the Taser X-26, ASP Baton, and Oleoresin Capsicum Spray (pepper spray). All of these devices are deployed for the protection of students, staff, visitors, and officers.

Campus Safety has armed personnel who participate in the department's initial and ongoing sponsored firearms training as well as other applicable training and qualifications required by the State of California.

Campus Safety Officers are empowered to arrest individuals for all crimes committed on Biola property under authority of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Los Angeles County Sheriff. The MOU is granted under the authority of Penal Code Section 830.7 and grants all powers of arrest under Penal Code Section 836. All arrestees are turned over to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department (LASD) for appropriate processing. Campus Safety personnel may complete and conduct selected criminal investigations on Biola property. All follow-up criminal investigations are completed by the LASD. Serious or major crimes occurring on Biola property are investigated by the LASD. Crime statistics for Biola University may be found in the Annual Security Report at: http://biola.edu/asr. Prompt reporting helps ensure that appropriate warning notices can be distributed and assist with the timely disclosure of crime statistics. These statistics are in compliance with the Department of Education's Student Right to Know Act.

The Campus Safety Department conducts administrative investigations involving University rules and regulations. These investigations may involve students, staff, and visitors on Biola property. Appropriate referrals necessitating further review and action may be made to Student Development, Human Resources, or other administrative staff.

The Campus Safety Department may investigate traffic collisions occurring on campus. Officers and Student Cadets conduct parking enforcement on campus property and issue citations. Parking citations given to student or staff personnel must be paid in a timely manner. Procedures for the collection of fees may be reviewed at the Campus Safety Department. Officers may also issue citations for driving violations on campus. These citations may be issued in person, delivered to the involved party via mail, or placed on the vehicle.

To control access to the campus at night and provide visitor parking permits, maps, and other information during the day, Campus Safety has Gatehouses at the entrances to campus on Biola Avenue and La Mirada Boulevard. At night the gate arms are down and allow access to Biola ID cardholders only-all other persons must stop at the Gatehouse to speak with the gate attendant. The Department also operates a full-service Communication Center (which consists of Emergency Dispatch and switchboard) located in Metzger Hall. The center is staffed 24 hours a day by trained operators and dispatchers.

The Communication Center is also equipped with a campus-wide digital video surveillance system. We also have an emergency notification system for the purpose of sending an emergency notification via the internet, cell phone, or landline phone connection. Students and employees may access: http://biola.edu/ens at any time to designate a personal cell phone number to receive text messages sent by Biola University's emergency notification system.

Recognizing that a Christian university is not exempt from crime, students are asked to use common sense and caution in every aspect of their activities. The University's Annual Security and Fire Safety Report (which includes crime statistics for the previous three years for all of Biola's campuses) is available on the Campus Safety website, or will be provided upon request at the Campus Safety office.

Please refer to the Campus Safety website for further information or call the Campus Safety Administrative Office at (562) 903-4877.

Immigration Services

Issues related to compliance with U.S. Immigration laws for F-1 International Students and his or her dependents are being undertaken by the Immigration Services of the Office of the Registrar. For Immigration Services assistance, please contact (562) 777-4007.

Global Student Programs and Development

The department of Global Student Programs and Development exists to serve, educate and empower global students toward whole-person, intercultural development. Our enduring vision is to see global students thrive in a more globally-minded community at Biola University.

Global Student Programs and Development serves a unique population of students who have spent portions of their developmental years outside of the United States. These students include:

  • international students on a F-1 Visa
  • third culture students
  • students from missionary settings

These students come to Biola from over 40 different countries, and each one is a distinct and valuable gift to our community. The diversity that comes from their experiences enhances our environment of faith and learning. Their presence and scholarly contribution will assist the University in attaining its pursuit of becoming a recognized global center for Christian thought.

The GSPD Department serves all global students by providing the following programs for them:

  • 4-day Fall Orientation for new students
  • Monthly academic workshops
  • Monthly off-campus events
  • Academic counseling and referrals to appropriate departments
  • Personal and small group mentoring on global student challenges
  • Financial/Tax workshops
  • Phase-Out/Transitions workshops and celebrations

Moreover, GSPD seeks to educate and empower global students with unique leadership development and identity development opportunities. During their time at Biola, global students can choose to be part of the Global Student Leadership Team. Involvement in this opportunity includes:

  • Personal and small group mentoring by GSPD Director
  • Experiential learning experiences for building an intercultural community
  • Developing peer leadership skills
  • Self-awareness of intercultural identity development

Finally, we desire for global students to be empowered to be global leaders in other areas of the University as well as in the world. Therefore, GSPD seeks to partner with many of the departments/divisions on campus, as well as churches, organizations, volunteers, and academic institutions outside the Biola campus in order to maximize cultural engagement, provide intercultural training, and promote learning and development.

The Global Student Programs and Development office is located in the Student Development Building. For additional information please visit: studentlife.biola.edu/diversity/global/

Learning Center

The Learning Center exists to provide students with assistance in achieving and maintaining an adequate level of academic proficiency in order to be successful within Biola University's competitive and rigorous intellectual environment. We aspire to cultivate and equip holistically minded learners with the life skills, academic tools and personal resources to be their best self.

The Learning Center also provides programs that assist students in becoming effective and intentional learners. Programs offered include:

  • Disability Student Services: The Learning Center is committed to ensuring equal treatment, educational opportunity, accessibility, and human dignity for all students with learning, physical, and psychological disabilities. The Learning Center actuates this commitment by providing reasonable and appropriate accommodations to students with disabilities and medical conditions, assisting in advocacy, educating the Biola community, and by ensuring legal compliance with state and federal disability laws (the Americans With Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act).
  • Strategies for Academic & Personal Success (GNST 001): Instruction in success strategies for navigating the rigors of college and life beyond. Particular attention is given to time management, personal self-awareness, strengths based living/learning, moderation, critical thinking, test-taking and holistic living. 
  • Undergraduate Tutoring: The tutoring programs provide academic assistance for most General Education courses and select major emphasis courses. Tutoring is available in individual and small group formats (a minimal fee is required).

Additional resources are available for students through The Learning Center website: studentlife.biola.edu/student-support/academic/learning-center. For more information, contact the Learning Center as (562) 906-4542.

Academic Advising

Biola University believes that academic advising is a significant experience throughout the academic journey. While the student holds the ultimate responsibility in educational decision-making, advisors play an intentional role by guiding students in their academic progress, plans, and engagement. Advisors partner with students in the larger community of Biola to provide resources for student success and challenge students to take a Christ-centered approach in their academic endeavors (Ephesians 4:11-16). The following are established learning outcomes for academic advising:

  • Students will be able to develop a relationship with faculty member(s) outside of the classroom setting.
  • Students will be able to independently navigate university policies and procedures regarding course selection, registration, academic standing, the progression of curriculum, and fulfillment of graduation requirements.
  • Students will learn how to identify program and curricular paths that are consistent with their abilities, career, interests, life goals, and sense of calling.
  • Students will learn how to utilize critical thinking and decision-making skills in managing and planning their lives.
  • Students will have tools to develop and implement a meaningful educational plan with awareness of high impact educational practices (ex: writing-intensive courses, research opportunities, capstone experiences, internships, and cross-cultural experiences).
  • Students will have the opportunity to pursue and discover connections within the general education, Bible, and major coursework.
  • Students will be able to reflect on the deeper work God may be doing in their hearts and minds through their academic learning, and identify how they might respond and cooperate with the Holy Spirit in this work.

Academic Advising for undergraduate students utilizes a faculty-based advising model. Students with a declared major are assigned a faculty advisor in their discipline. It is required that students meet with their assigned advisor once per semester.

The Office of Academic Advising (also known as The Advising Center) has full-time advisors assigned to all undeclared students and those seeking additional help. Students should utilize the services of The Advising Center if they are:

  • Thinking of changing their major
  • Considering adding a second major or minor
  • Transfer students needing clarification regarding transfer credits
  • Students who have already met with their advisor but have further questions

Additionally, students who have been placed on first semester academic probation (see catalog section on Academic Probation) or were provisionally admitted to the University are required to meet with an advisor in The Advising Center.

Advisors, both faculty and full-time staff advisors, are available as a resource, but the student is ultimately responsible to ascertain and fulfill graduation requirements.

Additional resources are available for students through The Advising Center website: biola.edu/advising.

Psychological Services

Psychological testing and psychotherapeutic services are available to graduate and undergraduate students for a minimal fee. The center is open year round for individual, couple and group counseling. Students who struggle with any number of psychological difficulties are welcome. Inquiries may be made in person at the Biola Counseling Center, located at 12625 La Mirada Blvd. Ste. 202, or by phone at (562) 903-4800. During non-clinic hours, this same number may be used for psychological, non-medical emergencies.

Career Development

Career Development focuses on empowering students to be active agents in their career preparation and career outcomes. This involves students developing skills and mindset necessary for lifetime employability and discernment of career paths in a constantly changing world. Career Development collaborates with various partners to help students create career plans, develop vocational competencies, connect with employers, and secure meaningful work. Students are encouraged to pursue the following learning outcomes:

  • Develop one or more relationships with a career advisor outside of the classroom setting. Discuss life direction with a career advisor at least once per year. This can be a faculty member, career counselor, career advisor, academic advisor, industry expert, or someone else.
  • Take ownership of your career preparation, which usually involves: exploring interests and skills, reflecting on life's themes, researching suitable career options, creating roadmaps, identifying prerequisite work experiences and education, making lists of potential work organizations, pursuing good opportunities, customizing resumes and cover letters, conducting interviews, and submitting graduate school applications (if applicable).
  • Commit to gaining 1–3 years substantive work experience (e.g., internships) in an area of interest prior to graduation.

Popular services in Career Development include:

  • Biolalink job and internship database
  • Career Key assessment
  • Job search
  • Resumes
  • Cover letters
  • Career advising
  • Events calendar
  • Interviewing
  • Networking
  • Graduate school

Information on the above can be found on Career Development's website: career.biola.edu.

Writing Center

The Writing Center, located in the Library, is a place where undergraduate and graduate students of all disciplines and writing abilities can meet with trained writing consultants. These consultants help student writers revise current writing projects and help them develop writing skills that can be applied in courses across the academic spectrum.

Appeals and Grievances

Detailed information regarding grievances and appeals, whether in regard to scholarships, academic life, federal legislation or student conduct are found in the Student Handbook of each school. The undergraduate Student Handbook can be found online at: studentlife.biola.edu/campus-life/student-handbook/.

An individual may contact the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education for review of a complaint. The bureau may be contacted at:

Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education
2535 Capitol Oaks Drive, Suite 400
Sacramento, CA  95833
bppe.ca.gov
Phone: (916) 431-6924
Fax: (916) 263-1897