The Common Chart of Accounts (CCOA) fulfills a vital role for capturing operational, managerial, and external financial activity to meet campus and UC wide financial reporting. It organizes this financial activity by a series of segments that, put together, are meaningful for appropriately categorizing revenue and expenses. The combination of these segments is called a chartstring. When designed thoughtfully and used consistently, the chartstrings inform us of where money comes from and where it goes, enabling reporting and analysis at all levels across campus (and the UC system, thanks to the “common” elements of the new chart.)

Why are we changing our Chart of Accounts?

In order to improve the quality and consistency of the reporting of financial data, the University of California, Office of the President (UCOP) coordinated a collaborative project with all of its campuses and medical centers to design a Common Chart of Accounts (CCOA). UCSB will be adopting the CCOA by July 2024. Many of the UC campuses, including UC Santa Barbara, decided to adopt the CCOA while transitioning to a modern financial system with the implementation of Oracle Financials Cloud.  

Benefits of the new CCOA

  • Chartfields have a single use with a clear and consistent definition
  • Simple, intuitive, and able to adapt to growth and change
  • Captures sufficient transactional detail at the project, departmental, college, campus, and institutional levels to support financial and budgetary analysis and management
  • Enables standardized, accurate, and reliable internal and external reporting at detail and summary levels by:
    • Organizational entity
    • Fund type
    • Account structure

Common Chart of Account Segments

The following is a summary of the UCOP Common Chart of Accounts (CCOA) segments and descriptions.

# CCOA Segment Description
1 Entity Identifies the major organizational unit (campus) within the UC system responsible for the transaction
2 Fund High-level classification of the source of funds for a transaction and tracks spending restrictions and designations
3 Financial Reporting Unit (FRU) Represents an academic or operating unit identified with an ongoing business objective, aligned with the UCSB’s organization structure
4 Account Classifies the nature of the transaction as a specific type of revenue, expense, asset, liability or fund balances; often referred to as the 'natural' account
5 Purpose The functional classification of expenses as it applies to internal and federal or other external reporting requirements
6 Program Associates transactions with a formal, on-going, significant system-wide or cross-campus initiative
7 Project Tracks financial activity related to a sponsored award, a capital project, or a "body of work" that has a start and end date often spanning fiscal years.  
8 Activity Classifies transactions related to a recurring activity
9 Campus Commitment Classifies budgetary commitments from the Chancellor, Division, Dean, or department or related to a capital project 
10 Inter-campus Reserved for future use
11 Future 1 Reserved for future use
12 Future 2 Reserved for future use

CCOA Segment Examples

Translating the Current COA to the New CCOA

Important Changes

  • For most segments, a hierarchical tree structure was created to facilitate roll-up reporting
  • Most Fund numbers will change
  • The dept. ID remains the "home department," but a financial transaction requires a Financial Reporting Unit (FRU) value to specify “who”
  • The Account number becomes the “natural classification” of an expenditure similar to the current Object Code; will specify “what;” coding for Sub-Accounts is no longer needed
  • The Account numbers are not owned by a specific department; the owner of a transaction is identified by the FRU
  • The purpose of an expenditure, e.g., Instruction, Research, Student Financial Aid, etc., is currently represented by the first-two digits of the Account; the Purpose is now a separate segment
  • Program, Activity, and Campus Commitment values are used for tracking budgetary and transactional activity for consolidated reporting

Implementing a New CCOA


  • Define segments, purpose and usage
    • Refine how UCSB will use segment
    • Determine UCSB segment name and definition
    • Confirm the field length and type
    • Determine sequential order
    • Identify high-level hierarchy
  • Map current-state segments to future-state segments

What's Next

  • Define the future-state values and map current-state to future-state
  • Determine the need to refine values and hierarchies
  • Finalize mapping to begin data conversion and integrations
  • Define chart of accounts governance