Study a semester at The University of California Berkeley

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STUDY A SEMESTER OR A FULL ACADEMIC YEAR AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA BERKELEY

These programs are best suited for current undergraduate and graduate students, as well as recent graduates. Similar to an exchange program. Contact a representative to get a quote, to receive more information, and a pdf brochure

Exchange international students in Berkeley

SEMESTER ABROAD AT BERKELEY

Berkeley Global offers special programs for high school and college students who want to study abroad for a semester or a complete academic year in the USA.

Semester abroad at University of California Berkeley

SOME OF THE GREATEST STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS IN BERKELEY

UC Berkeley’s programs allow you to study abroad at this great university and experience how it’s like to be a regular student.

international students walking on campus of Berkeley

ENHANCE YOUR CAREER BY STUDYING IN A GREAT CITY SUCH AS BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA

Berkeley is a great place for college students who are looking to enhance their career by studying abroad, as they can network with others, meet new people, and visit different tourist attractions.

TOP 10 REASONS TO STUDY ABROAD AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA BERKELEY

This is one of the most popular destination for international students
1

A GREAT SELECTION OF COURSES AT UC BERKELEY

At UC Berkeley you’ll find a wide variety of courses to choose, based on your academic interests, in areas such as science, math, technology, engineering, liberal arts, literature, and much more.

2

LEARN FROM AN AMAZING FACULTY

The faculty at the University of California Berkeley have years of experience in their area of specialty, which reassures you’ll receive nothing but the best education.

3

STUDY IN A FANTASTIC INSTITUTION

UC Berkeley is one of the best universities in the USA and the world, according to the Academic Ranking of World Universities.

4

STUDY IN A DIVERSE ENVIRONMENT

At the University of California Berkeley, you’ll be studying in a diverse environment with students who come from all over the world, which is great for meeting people and networking.

5

OPPORTUNITIES FOR NETWORKING

Since you can choose the courses you’d like to enroll on, you’ll be meeting people with similar interests and from your same field.

6

CLASSES HELD ON CAMPUS AT UC BERKELEY

All classes are held on campus or near it, which gives you the opportunity of experiencing how it feels to be a college student in the USA.

7

CHOOSE FOR HOW LONG YOU WISH TO STUDY

These programs at UC Berkeley allow you to choose for how long you wish to study: for a semester or a complete academic year.

8

HAVE LOTS OF FUN WHILE ADVANCING YOUR CAREER

In the University of California Berkeley, you can participate in all kinds of fun cultural, sport, and social activities and events.

9

ACCESS TO CAMPUS FACILITIES AT UC BERKELEY

Students at UC Berkeley have access to campus facilities and resources, which allows them to live a full college experience abroad.

10

BERKELEY IS A FANTASTIC CITY TO STUDY

Berkeley is located in the San Francisco Bay, a fantastic area for professionals and students, as there are tons of tourist attractions and Silicon Valley can be found there.

STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA BERKELEY

BERKELEY GLOBAL

Berkeley Global offers several Full-time Certificate programs for international students

Professional programs in the following fields of study
Full-Time Program

Programs for current University students

Full-Time Program

Programs for current High School students

PROGRAMS FOR CURRENT UNIVERSITY STUDENTS

Semester- or year-long program for undergraduate and graduate students. Explore a variety of UC Berkeley courses and subjects based on your academic interests—from sciences, mathematics, technology and engineering to liberal arts, literature and more.

Learning alongside Berkeley students, you can take a variety of courses on campus that you wouldn’t find at your home university. Experience top-ranked academics without the admissions process!

The Berkeley Global of the University of California Berkeley offers the following Programs for international students:

BERKELEY GLOBAL ACCESS (BGA)

The BGA Program allows you to enroll on a wide selection of courses from a variety of areas of study for a semester or a full academic year, while enjoying UC Berkeley’s orientation and advising. This program is aimed at undergraduate/graduate students or recent graduates.

Main Features
  • Semester- and year-long programs
  • Classes are near or on campus
  • Access to University facilities and services
  • Courses for Arts and Humanities, Engineering, Languages, Mathematics and Sciences, and Social Sciences.
  • Lessons are full-time, Monday–Friday, 12–18 units per semester
  • Personal academic advising
  • Graduate school admissions workshop
  • Numerous clubs and organizations available to join
  • Applies for F-1 Student Visa
Requirements
  • Minimum recommended GPA: 3.0
  • Meeting the prerequisites of the courses you intend to take
  • Meet the minimum English proficiency level: TOEFL 90, Academic IELTS 7.0, DAAD C1, Cambridge C1 Advanced, TEM-4 or TEM-8 level 70.
BERKELEY HAAS GLOBAL ACCESS (BHGAP) - Business/Entrepreneurship

The Berkeley Haas Global Access Program allows you to enroll on special courses for those who are preparing for a career in business or entrepreneurship. As part of this program, you’ll be taking core courses; additional electives for marketing, leadership, entrepreneurship and/or finance; and one additional elective course of your choice from the UC Berkeley catalog. This is aimed at undergraduate or graduate students, as well as recent graduates.

Main Features
  • Semester- and year-long programs
  • Classes are near or on campus
  • Access to University facilities and services
  • Company visits
  • Lectures from top faculty and business experts
  • Lessons are full-time, Monday–Friday, 12–15 units per semester
  • Electives for areas such as marketing, leadership, entrepreneurship and/or finance and an additional elective outside business from the UC Berkeley course catalog
  • Numerous clubs and organizations available to join
  • Applies for F-1 Student Visa and Optional Practical Training (OPT)
  • Certificate of completion
Requirements
  • At least 2 years of undergraduate coursework
  • Minimum recommended GPA: 3.0
  • Meet the minimum English proficiency level: TOEFL 90, Academic IELTS 7.0, DAAD C1, Cambridge C1 Advanced, TEM-4 or TEM-8 level 70.
BERKELEY LEGAL STUDIES

The Berkeley Legal Studies Global Access Program prepares you to advance your career in law or any other related areas. You’ll be learning how to become a highly-skilled legal innovator, taking into consideration the current and future trends in law.

Main Features
  • Semester- and year-long programs
  • Classes are near or on campus
  • Access to University facilities and services
  • Visits from law firms and public-interest law organizations
  • Lessons are full-time, Monday–Friday, 12–15 units per semester
  • Electives for areas such as criminal justice, human rights research, immigration and citizenship, sociology, etc.; and an additional elective from the UC Berkeley course catalog
  • Numerous clubs and organizations available to join
  • Applies for F-1 Student Visa and Optional Practical Training (OPT)
  • Certificate of completion
Requirements
  • At least 2 years of undergraduate coursework
  • Minimum recommended GPA: 3.0
  • Meet the minimum English proficiency level: TOEFL 90, Academic IELTS 7.0, DAAD C1, Cambridge C1 Advanced, TEM-4 or TEM-8 level 70.

PROGRAMS FOR CURRENT HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS

High school graduates can spend one term or a complete a gap year with the fall and spring terms. Improve your academic English skills in courses on writing and reading and your college readiness for math and science in courses such as precalculus, chemistry and physics. You can also increase your TOEFL and SAT scores in Test Preparation and learn to write engaging college application essays in the Personal Essay course

COLLEGE FOUNDATION PROGRAM (CFP)

This program is designed for recent high school graduates who are looking to prepare for college studies. You not only will be able to enroll on college-level courses, but you’ll also be receiving all the advising you need to be ready for university.

Main Features
  • Semester- and year-long programs
  • Classes are near campus
  • Access to University facilities and services
  • Lessons are full-time, Monday–Friday, 20 hours per week
  • Courses include Academic English classes, exam preparation for TOEFL and SAT, Listening and Speaking, Precalculus or Calculus, among others.
  • Numerous clubs and organizations available to join
  • Applies for F-1 Student Visa
Requirements
  • Minimum recommended GPA: 3.0
  • Meet the minimum English proficiency level: TOEFL 80, IELTS 6.5

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PRICES & DATES

Complete the contact form to get a quote

PRICES AND DATES STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS 2021 - 2022

How much does it cost to study a semester abroad at The University of California Berkeley?

Table with dates of each semester at UC Berkeley Global 2021 - 2022

SemesterDatesApplication Deadline
Spring 2021Jan. 12 - May. 14, 2021Dec. 14, 2020
Fall 2021Aug. 18 - Dec. 17, 2021Jun. 28, 2021

Table with costs of each semester at UC Berkeley Global 2021 - 2022

ProgramProgram Fee
Berkeley Global Access$15,500–$18,400 (*)
Berkeley HAAS Global Access$19,900
Berkeley Legal Studies$19,900
College Foundation Program$17,700

* Price based on number of units enrolled

You can study one or two consecutive semester.

What is included in the "Program Fee" of each program, and other costs to consider

Within the program fee there are certain features which will be including. On top of that, there are other additional costs you must consider, that we'll explain down below.

The following fees are included in the "Program Fee"

  • Courses
  • Housing advice and support
  • Orientation
  • Completion certificate when it applies
  • Additional visits / lectures when it applies
  • Health insurance

Other costs to consider

  • Application fee: a USD$100 non-refundable fee paid upon your application, which covers the delivery to your home country of the Form I-20 via certified post mail, which is needed to apply for the student visa.
  • Visa costs: international students who enroll on a full-time program in the USA need the F-1 student visa. Costs related to the F-1 visa include the I-901 SEVIS Fee (US$350 aprox) to register on the Student Exchange Visitor Information System and a Visa fee (US$160 aprox). These are costs set by the U.S. government.
  • Accommodation in Berkeley: since you will be living and studying abroad, you should consider certain housing costs. Down below you can read some of the options Berkeley recommends for foreign students.
  • Books and supplies: these materials are not included within your tuition fees.
  • Flight Tickets from your country to Berkeley, USA
  • Food: you should consider food costs when planning your budget, which will depend on where you eat.
Dates and costs are subject to change. All prices are in US dollars. Contact us for more details.

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Contact a Representative and receive a brochure in pdf format Get a Quote

HOW TO APPLY FOR A SEMESTER ABROAD AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA BERKELEY

All the application process is online. Follow the instructions below

Steps to apply for a program

  • 1. Application Process
  • 2. Acceptance Process
  • 3. Visa Processing
  • 4. Payment
  • 5. Classes start!

1. Application Process

Documents must be sent to

Documents needed to apply


1. Application Form

Download and complete the application form. Do not forget to sign the form.

Download Form and Instructions

2. Passport Copy

Clear Copy of the identification page of your passport. The passport must be valid for 6 months after the first day of classes.


3. Proof of English-Language Proficiency

As an international student in UC Berkeley, you must submit proof of English-language proficiency, and the minimum scores are: TOEFL iBT 90, Academic IELTS 7.0, DAAD C1, and TEM-4 or TEM-8 Level 70; and TOEFL 80 / IELTS 6.5 for the College Foundations Program


4. Academic Transcripts

You must upload your complete academic transcript. It must include all the courses you have completed along with your grade or score for each course. Your transcript should be issued in your institution's language of instruction. If the language of instruction of your institution is not English, you must also upload an official transcript in English or an English translation of your original transcript (usually prepared by the school or an official translator).


5. Statement of Purpose

A 800-1,000 words essay, single spaced, stating: your background (personal, academic, professional, etc.), your understanding of the program, and also explain any anomalies found in your transcript, if there's any. If no anomaly is found, do not include this section.


6. Financial Verification

Bank letter or bank statement that shows that you or your sponsor have at least the "Estimated Total Expense" of the program (amounts can be in US dollars or your local currency).

The estimated total expense is an estimate made by the university that includes tuition fees, and an estimate of what you might spend in medical insurance, housing, meals, books and supplies. Flight tickets are not included in this estimation.

Bank document must show at least the following amount per program:

  • BGA: USD$26,000 (One Semester) / USD$52,000 (Two Semesters)
  • HAAS: USD$30,400 (One Semester)
  • Legal Studies: USD$30,400 (One Semester)
  • College Foundations: USD$28,200 (Fall Term) / USD$56,400 (Fall + Spring Terms)

7. Application Fee

Non-refundable application fee of $100 dollars paid to the Berkeley Global. After receiving confirmation from one of our representatives, you must pay the application fee online, following the instructions mentioned by the representative.


Send your application documents

A representative need to review all your documents are correct.

Your application documents must be sent to

*If you are a US resident or a transfer student from another US school. Please contact us for more details. The application process is different

2. Acceptance Process

After we have received all your application documents and you have paid the application fee, you will be contacted by the admission office within 2 weeks.

If you are applying for a full-time program, you will need an F-1 student visa. After you have been accepted in the program, the admission office will send you the acceptance documents plus the form I-20, needed to apply for the F-1 student visa.

3. Visa Processing

Please check with us what type of visa you need, depending on the program you are interested in at Berkeley.
  • If the program you are applying for is a full-time program (18hrs/week or more), you will need the F-1 student visa. With an F-1 visa you can extend your stay in the United States as long as you continue studying.
  • If your program is less than 18 hours a week, you will have to travel to the U.S. as a tourist with a B1/B2 tourist visa or visa waiver ESTA. As a tourist, you can only stay in the U.S. the time period your tourist visa allows, since your main purpose in the U.S. should be tourism.

Please check the website of the U.S. embassy of your country to see the steps you need to apply for a visa.

Generally, for a F-1 student visa, students must do the following:

  • Complete the DS-160 form
  • Schedule an appointment at the U.S. embassy
  • Pay for the F-1 student visa (approx. US$160)
  • Pay for the I-901 SEVIS Fee (approx. US$350): https://www.fmjfee.com/i901fee/index.html
  • Go to the embassy on the scheduled day

You must confirm these steps on the website of the U.S. embassy in your country. You can look for your nearest U.S. embassy here: https://www.usembassy.gov/

4. Payment

Next, you need to make full payment of all remaining fees, which is due at least 30 days before the first day of classes and can be done by credit card and bank wire transfers in US Dollars. You will receive more information regarding dates once you begin the application process.

5. Arrival to School

You should arrive 5 to 7 days before your orientation date. On your admission letter you can find more information about the orientation and the initial placement test. On the first day at school you should bring your passport, F-1 student visa, I-20 and a bank statement.

Important: We suggest you to apply at least 2 months in advance.

ACTIVITIES FOR INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

You will be able to participate in several activities during the program

SOCIAL, CULTURAL AND SPORTS ACTIVITIES IN BERKELEY AND ACTIVITIES AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA BERKELEY

Most of the activities are free!

ONE OF THE BEST WAYS TO KEEP IMPROVING YOUR ENGLISH OUTSIDE OF THE CLASSROOM IS BY PARTICIPATING IN SOCIAL, CULTURAL, SPORT AND OTHER ACTIVITIES OFFERED BY THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA BERKELEY.

International students can participate in activities as:

  • Fun activities around Berkeley
  • On-campus events
  • On-campus sport activities
  • Visits to nearby cities

Students at UC Berkeley can join a wide variety of on-campus events, use the different sport facilities to exercise and make new friends, participate in all kinds of fun activities around the Berkeley area, and visit nearby locations such as San Francisco, Napa Valley, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Lake Tahoe, or even the Yosemite National Park. These are all awesome opportunities for networking, making new friends, and putting your English into practice.

Information about the city of Berkeley, California

Berkeley is home to the oldest campus in the University of California system, the University of California Berkeley. The city of Berkeley has many parks, and promotes greenery and the environment. Berkeley has one of the highest rates of bicycle and pedestrian commuting in the United States. Berkeley has everything you'll ever need, such as parks, restaurants, shopping, night life, etc. If you want more, you can take the subway and in 30 minutes you will be in the amazing nearby city of San Francisco.

San Francisco has a wide variety of attractions and is the place for millions of tourists every year. Among some of its attractions you'll find Alcatraz, Golden Gate Bridge, Golden Gate Park, Aquarium of the Bay, Pier 39 Fisherman’s Wharf, Union Square, China Town, Embarcadero/Financial District, North Beach, Sausalito, etc. San Francisco is also known as the leading financial and cultural center of Northern California in the San Francisco Bay Area, and is close to the world-famous Silicon Valley area.

international students of Berkeley visiting San Francisco

Information about The University of California Berkeley

The University of California, Berkeley (also referred to as UC Berkeley, Berkeley, California, or simply Cal) is a public research university located in Berkeley, California, United States. Berkeley is considered one of the most prestigious universities in the world. The university occupies 1,232 acres on the eastern side of the San Francisco Bay with the central campus resting on 178 acres. Berkeley is among the most selective public universities in the United States. It offers approximately 350 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in a wide range of disciplines.

Established in 1868, Berkeley is the oldest of the ten major campuses affiliated with the University of California (UC). Berkeley has been charged with providing both "classical" and "practical" education for the state's people and is the flagship institution in the University of California system. Berkeley faculty, alumni, and researchers have won 71 Nobel Prizes (including 28 alumni Nobel laureates), 9 Wolf Prizes, 7 Fields Medals, 15 Turing Awards, 45 MacArthur Fellowships, 20 Academy Awards, and 11 Pulitzer Prizes.

campus of Berkeley

Photos of the Semester Abroad Programs at The University of California Berkeley

international students studying abroad in Berkeley
Golden Gate bridge
exchange international students walking on Berkeley campus

Videos of the Semester Abroad Programs at The University of California Berkeley

HOUSING IN BERKELEY

Most common housing options for international students in Berkeley

STUDENTS FROM THE GLOBAL ACCESS PROGRAM AT BERKELEY GLOBAL HAVE 3 MAIN HOUSING OPTIONS:

Check housing options for international students at Berkeley in Berkeley
  • Dormitories off Campus
  • Apartments
  • Homestay

Dormitories Off Campus

These are private dormitories non-affiliated with UC Berkeley that include a fully furnished shared or private room, Wi-Fi connection, among other amenities. This is a great option, because you can live with other college students, make new friends, and live in a more structured environment.

Some of the options are:

Apartments

Another option you can try is looking for an apartment to rent on your own or share with other students. This option might be more suited for those who will study for a longer period, because in most cases you'll need to sign a lease.

Some of the options are:

Homestay (Living with a family)

Homestays are a type of housing in which students live with a local family in the same house, share common areas, and follow household rules, just like any family member. This can be a good option for younger students that don't feel ready to live on their own yet. And as such, living with an American family is perfect for those who want to interact with a local family.

Some of the options are:

FINDING A PLACE TO LIVE, DEPENDS EXCLUSIVELY ON THE STUDENT.

There are many options available near the campus of the University. If the housing option is off campus, students must contact directly the housing provider.

FAQS

Do you have any question about studying a semester abroad at Berkeley?

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT STUDYING A SEMESTER ABROAD AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA BERKELEY

If you do not find the answer, please contact a representative filling the form below

What is UC Berkeley Global?

UC Berkeley Global is in charge of all study abroad programs of UCB. It offers programs for national and international students and is constantly growing and improving alongside its students. They are taught essential skills for their field of study and leave UCB Global as capable, experienced professionals that are fully prepared to make significant contributions to their current or future companies, or even start their own ventures.

Why should I choose UC Berkeley?

The University of California Berkeley is a public university member of the prestigious University of California system, alongside UC Santa Barbara, UC Los Angeles, UC San Diego, among others. It is among the 30 best universities around the world according to the QS World Ranking 2021. It has modern, cutting-edge facilities, highly professional staff, its Extension courses are closely monitored and approved by UC Berkeley and is located in the tech hub of the San Francisco Bay, including the world-renowned Silicon Valley. All of this make it perfect for professional looking to boost their resume with an academic and working experience.

Why should I study in Berkeley and San Francisco?

These wonderful cities have become world centers for business and technology, which helps you to build a professional network that will definitely benefit you in the future, by interacting with other international and UC students. As if this wasn’t enough, you can also find lots of tourist attractions, cultural events, and breathtaking views that will make your time there unforgettable.

I am not a student in my country. Can enroll on these study abroad programs with a Student Visa?

Yes, you can! The study abroad programs at UC Berkeley are available for everyone, including those who are not currently studying. You only need to meet the minimum requirements stated before.

Does the University of California Berkeley offer scholarships?

In some cases, there are scholarships offered to students who show academic excellence. Contact us for more information.

Which are the different steps of the application process for the F-1 student visa to study at Berkeley?

Please check with us what type of visa you need to take the program you are interested in.

  • All full-time programs in the U.S. require a F-1 student Visa. With an F-1 visa you can extend your stay in the United States as long as you continue studying.
  • Part-time programs (less than 18 hours a week) can be taken with a tourist visa or visa waiver ESTA. With a tourist visa, you can only stay in the U.S. the duration your tourist visa allows, since your main purpose in the U.S. should be tourism.

If you need an F-1 student visa, please apply as soon as you receive your acceptance documents (I-20 form) from the Berkeley Global at The University of California Berkeley. In some countries it can take several weeks to obtain a visa interview at the U.S. embassy.

You must confirm these steps on the website of the U.S. embassy in your country. You can look for your nearest U.S. embassy here: https://www.usembassy.gov/

What kind of comments and reviews do the study abroad programs at UC Berkeley have?

The University of California Berkeley is ranked among some of the best schools in the world and the USA, so students have placed their trust in this institution for decades, particularly the quality of its faculty and facilities. That’s why international students write fantastic reviews and comments about UC Berkeley and its study abroad programs.

Are classes taught inside UC Berkeley?

In some cases, held inside campus, and in others, near it.

What’s an OPT?

OPT or Optional Practical Training is an employment authorization for those who have studied for a certain period in the USA with an F-1 Student Visa, and allows them to work, gain experience and earn money for up to 12 months.

What are the requirements for the OPT?

Students must:

  • Have a valid F-1 Student Visa
  • Have been a full-time student enrolled on UC Berkeley for a complete academic year
  • Be less than 90 days away from finishing your studies
  • Have not been approved for OPT at another institution before

Can I use the universityfacilities and services at UC Berkeley?

Yes. As a UC Berkeley Global student, you have gym and library access, as well as the opportunity to join several extracurricular activities where you can meet new people with similar interests.

Do I need to take the TOEFL or IELTS exams to apply for the study abroad programs at UC Berkeley?

As an international student in UC Berkeley, you must submit proof of English-language proficiency, and the minimum scores are: TOEFL iBT 90, Academic IELTS 7.0, DAAD C1, and TEM-4 or TEM-8 Level 70; and TOEFL 80 / IELTS 6.5 for the College Foundations Program

Will I need a high school diploma to enroll on study abroad programs at UC Berkeley?

No, you won’t need a high school diploma to enroll on these study abroad programs.

Will I need health insurance to study at the University of California Berkeley?

Will I need health insurance to study at the University of California Berkeley?

Is there an application fee to study at the University of California Berkeley?

Yes, all programs have a US$100 application fee.

When do I need to pay for the program? What are the payment methods?

The full payment is due at least 30 days before the first day of classes and can be done by credit card and bank wire transfers in US Dollars.

Can I work while studying in Berkeley, California?

Only those with an F-1 Student Visa can work up to 20 hours a week inside the campus. However, these positions are really limited, so you won’t be able to find a job. You may still apply for Optional Practical Training or OPT in some cases.

The answers provided in the frequent asked questions may change from time to time. In order to confirm any of these answers, we suggest to contact a representative filling the form below.

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