It is simple to add documents to your online application, such as your statement of purpose, writing sample (if required), résumé, academic transcripts and other supporting materials. The purpose of this troubleshooting guide is to outline the process and give you some helpful tips so that you are sure to do this successfully.
Uploading a Document
To upload a document, first prepare the document on your computer and save it. Then, go to the screen in the online application where you want to upload the file and do the following:
- In the box labeled "Name" give the document a unique name to identify it (e.g., Statement of Purpose, Senior Thesis, Article for Press-Citizen, UCLA Transcript, TOEFL Score Report, etc.). Giving your documents names will allow you to manage them with "Manage Documents."
- Click the "Choose File" button and locate the file on your computer. Double-click the file to select it. You will see the file name appear to the right of the "Choose File" button.
- Click the red "Upload" button. You will see the "We are currently processing your document" message. During busy periods, it may take several minutes for the upload to complete. You can speed up the process by converting your document to a PDF before you upload it (see below). If the process times out, you will be asked to upload the document again. Consecutive timeouts could also be the result of an invalid file format (see below).
- When the upload is complete, the "Save" button in the upper right corner will have been replaced with the "Preview" button, and the "Delete Document" button will appear at the bottom of the screen. Click "Preview" to see the document you uploaded and check it for accuracy.
Deleting an Uploaded Document
To delete a document you uploaded to a page, click the "Delete Document" button. You can then replace it with a different document.
Problems uploading documents are usually caused by the size or type of the file. Here are some common problems and solutions.
My Document Won't Upload
- Each file should be less than 100 pages long, and less than 2 MB (2048 KB) in size. See "I need to reduce file size" below.
- Your file name should not contain any special characters—accents, tildes, symbols, etc. (e.g., è, é, ñ, &, *, #). Also,try not to use non-English characters in the body of your document as doing so may cause conversion errors.
- After you click on the "Upload" button, you may get the following message:
“Your document was NOT processed successfully. Please try again. If you are attempting to upload a PDF, try recreating your PDF document. If you continue to experience problems, please contact technical support.”
If you get this message, it often means that the upload is simply in progress. Wait several minutes to see if the upload works successfully.
My Document is Blank or Wrong
- If you are attempting to upload a secure PDF of an academic transcript produced by your college or university, the security features built into the document may prevent it from displaying correctly, or at all. If this is the case, the best solution is to print out a hard copy, then scan it and upload the scan (see below).
- PDF Portfolios (collections of PDFs in one large file) may not upload correctly. If this happens, open the portfolio and go to the page(s) of interest. Click the "Save/Save as" button, and choose "Save file from portfolio." Save it to your computer with a descriptive name. Do this with any other pages you want, giving them different names, then upload the PDFs you created to your application.
I Need to Reduce File Size.
- If it is a multi-page document, try splitting it into 2 or 3 parts, then uploading them in order.
- Convert the file to a PDF. Many word processors allow you to save a document as a PDF. If you have a Gmail account, you have access to Google Drive and Google Docs. Upload the document to Google Drive and open with Google Docs. You can then choose to download it as a PDF. Upload the PDF to the application
- If the document is already a PDF, and you have access to Adobe Acrobat (not the free Adobe Reader), you can use the "Document ...Reduce File Size" feature.
I Have More Documents Than Allotted Pages
Most programs provide 12 pages for uploading documents:
Statement of Purpose
Writing Sample 1-3
Transcript Upload 1-3
Additional Information 1-4
While the titles of the pages are a guide to the correct order of documents, you can upload any document to any page. If you have 4 writing samples, you can upload the last writing sample in "Transcript Upload 1", then upload your transcript(s) beginning on the next upload page. "Additional Information" pages can be used for any additional documents you want to include with your application.
I Have a Hard Copy, Not a Computer File
You will need to convert it into an electronic file by using a scanner. When you scan your image, we suggest saving the document in either a PDF or JPEG format so it is as small as possible. Other file formats that are accepted are GIF,TIFF and Bitmap. Once you have scanned and saved your image, you can upload it using the instructions above.
Remember that the file size cannot exceed 2 MB (2048 KB). Refer to your scanner’s software documentation for ideas on reducing file size. You may try the following:
- Lower the resolution when initially scanning your document.
- Save in black and white, or remove unnecessary colors.
- Reduce the height and width of the image.
Still Having Problems?
Click on the “help” button at the top of any screen. Go to the tab for “Applicants.” If your question is not answered in that section, then go to the link labeled “Ask Us a Question” and you can easily contact technical support.