dist-fell-stusWhen you enter your graduate program at Berkeley, and throughout your studies, your day-to-day interactions are with your program’s faculty and staff. But did you realize that the Graduate Division — an all-campus unit located in Sproul Hall — is constantly working behind the scenes, and sometimes at front and center, to help you along the path to your degree?

Do you wonder what the Graduate Division does to serve you and almost 11,000 other students in 100-plus graduate degree programs?

The deans and staff of the Graduate Division are involved with every stage of your life as a graduate student as you:

  • apply to your program and become admitted to the university
  • apply for and are awarded fellowships or grants
  • are appointed to academic employment on campus
  • undertake teaching training, mentoring, and professional development activities
  • track progress milestones toward your degree
  • seek to balance your studies and work with your personal well-being in all aspects of your life

Fiona M. DoyleIn short, the Graduate Division offers academic, personal, and professional support services that are vital to the everyday well-being and life-long successes of Berkeley master’s, professional, and doctoral students.

The Graduate Division carries out another key responsibility as well. We work hand-in-hand with your program’s faculty and staff, your department chair, and your school’s or college’s deans to maintain the world-renowned quality of Berkeley’s graduate education. As the administrative arm of the Academic Senate’s Graduate Council and the campus’s authoritative resource and chief advocate for graduate education, the Graduate Division works to ensure the equitable administration of policies governing graduate academic and professional studies across Berkeley’s seventeen schools and colleges.


Graduate Division’s activities include:  

Services for Students

  • Track academic progress from admission to candidacy and degree conferral
  • Verify eligibility for academic appointments/campus employment
  • Coordinate with graduate student life and campus wellness resources
  • Administer policies and programs for student parents
  • Consider exceptions to policies, grievances, and appeals

Training and Mentoring Students

  • New Graduate Student Orientation (NGSO)
  • Conduct language testing and training for Graduate Student Instructors
  • Conduct ethics and responsibility training
  • Administer mentoring programs
  • Conduct writing and publishing workshops
  • Offer student professional development for both academic and non-academic careers

Funding to Students and Academic Programs

  • Administer the campus-wide fellowship competition
  • Provide block allocations and other student funds to academic programs
  • Fund student conference travel grants, parent grants, summer fellowships
  • Administer dissertation and doctoral completion fellowships
  • Ensure fairness and equity of funding students across academic programs

Quality Assurance of Academic Programs

  • Administer policies of the Graduate Council and Academic Senate
  • Maintain academic standards for graduate program admissions and continued study
  • Manage enrollment for optimal sizing of graduate programs
  • Help programs prepare new academic and professional degree proposals
  • Provide data on program quality
  • Participate in academic program reviews
  • Survey students (incoming, mid-career, graduating, first placements) and doctoral alumni

Services for Staff and Administrators

  • Streamline rules and regulations
  • Consult with Head Graduate Advisors, Chairs, and Deans of the Schools and Colleges
  • Provide professional development to Graduate Student Affairs Officers in academic programs

External Relations

  • Organize and administer endowed public lecture series
  • Cultivate, solicit, and steward donors to campus-wide fellowships
  • Seek funds to support student life and professional development
  • Hold fund- and friend-raising events for alumni and friends of the university

sproul hall


Categories: April 2017, Headlines
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About Sharon Page-Medrich

Sharon Page-Medrich has assisted the Deans of the Graduate Division since 2001. Her professional passions include writing and editing. She has been active in several campus-wide community-building organizations.