Application Requirements

Congratulations on taking the next step towards submitting your graduate application! To help you along the way, we’ve compiled a list of requirements to complete your graduate application.

It’s also important to check with the program to which you’re applying, as they may have additional requirements specific to their program of study and degree not listed on this page.

The minimum graduate admissions requirements are:

    1. Expect to or hold a bachelor’s degree or recognized equivalent from an accredited institution.
    2. A satisfactory scholastic average, usually a minimum grade-point average (GPA) of 3.0 (B) on a 4.0 scale; and
    3. Enough undergraduate training and/or professional experience to do graduate work in your chosen field.

You must hold or expect to hold a bachelor’s degree prior to the start of classes from a U.S.accredited institution by one of the AACRAO regional accrediting agencies* or a recognized equivalent from an accredited institution outside of the U.S.

* Regionally accredited college or university means an institution of higher education accredited by one of the following regional accreditation associations in the United States:

      1. Middle States Commission on Higher Education
      2. New England Association of Schools and Colleges
      3. The Higher Learning Commission (formerly known as North Central Association of Colleges and Schools)
      4. Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
      5. Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
      6. WASC Senior College and University Commission

Graduates of accredited academic institutions outside the United States should hold a degree equivalent to a U.S. bachelor’s degree. Please contact Graduate Admissions with questions.

Bachelor’s Degree from a U.S. Institution

Required Records: Upload unofficial transcripts (ie, a scanned copy) from every post-secondary school that you have attended, including your undergraduate institution, community colleges, summer sessions, and extension programs.

Bachelor’s Degree from an International Institution

Required Records: Upload a scanned copy of your transcript and degree certificate for each institution after high school. If your academic records are in a language other than English or Spanish, you may submit translations in one of two ways:

  1. Submit translations prepared by certified translators from the American Translators Association or the Ministry of Education. Degree names and grades should be transcribed, not converted, into English words or the U.S. grades of A-F. 
  2. Submit an official World Education Services (WES) International Credential Advantage Package (ICAP) evaluation (opens in a new tab). To electronically submit your WES ICAP, follow the instructions provided by WES. Select “University of California at Berkeley” as the recipient and “Graduate Admissions” 318 Sproul Hall #5900, Berkeley, CA 94720-5900 as the school/division.

All applicants who have completed a basic degree in a country/region in which the official language is not English are required to submit official evidence of English language proficiency. This requirement applies to institutions from Bangladesh, Nepal, India, Pakistan, Latin America, the Middle East, Israel, the People’s Republic of China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asian countries, most European countries, and countries in Africa in which English is not the official language.

There are two standardized tests you may take: the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), and the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)

TOEFL is administered by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). You can obtain detailed information from the TOEFL website.

We accept the internet based (iBT) and iBT Home Edition. We do not accept the TOEFL ITP or Duolingo.

For purposes of admission, your TOEFL test score must be at least 90 for the Internet-based test (IBT). Please contact individual academic departments for more information, as they may choose to require a higher score.

For Fall 2024, tests taken before June 1, 2022 will not be accepted even if your score was reported to UC Berkeley. Please send your test score directly from ETS to the institution code for UC Berkeley: 4833 for Graduate Organizations. We do not accept MyBest Scores.

International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

You can also submit scores from the Academic Modules of the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), which is jointly managed by the British Council, IDP:IELTS Australia, and the University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations. Consult the IELTS website to locate the office of the test center where you plan to take the test.

For purposes of admission, your most recent overall band score must be at least 7 on a 9-point scale.

For Fall 2024, tests taken before June 1, 2022 will not be accepted. All IELTS scores must be sent electronically from the testing center, and no institution code is required. Our address for identification purposes is: University of California, Berkeley, Graduate Division, Sproul Hall Rm 318, MC 5900, Berkeley, CA 94720. Please do not mail any score reports to us.


To qualify for a TOEFL/IELTS exemption, you must fulfill one of the following options:

  • Have a basic degree from a recognized institution in a country where the official language is English.
  • Have completed a basic or advanced degree at an institution, in the United States or a United States institution abroad, where the language of instruction is English and the institution is accredited by one of the United States’ regional accrediting agencies.
  • Have completed at least one year of full-time academic course work with grades of B or better at a regionally accredited institution within the United States.*
    • The following courses do not qualify for an exemption: courses in English as a Second Language, courses conducted in a language other than English, courses that will be completed after applicants submit their application, or courses of a nonacademic nature.

The TOEFL or IELTS must be submitted by applicants who do not meet the exemption criteria above.

Some programs require applicants to take a standardized test such as the GRE General Test, a GRE Subject Test, the GMAT or MCAT. Consult the program to which you are applying for the department’s requirements.

For the GRE, send your test score directly from ETS to the institution code for UC Berkeley: 4833 for Graduate Organizations. No department code is needed unless specified by the specific program. ETS will not report test scores older than 5 years.

For the GMAT or MCAT, please consult your program for details.

The application requires at least three letters of recommendation. Applicants should check with their prospective program for questions. Your recommenders are asked to give their personal impressions of your intellectual ability, your aptitude in research or professional skills, your character, and the quality of your previous work and potential for future productive scholarship. Be sure to inform your recommenders of the program’s application deadline.

Applicants may waive the right to inspect their letters of recommendation on a voluntary basis. This option can be selected when you fill out the recommendation invite for your recommender.

The Graduate Division may verify the authenticity of academic letters of recommendation with the school or recommender.

Submit a Statement of Purpose and Personal History statement, along with any other essays the program you are applying to requires.

The Statement of Purpose should describe your aptitude and motivation to enter the program. This can include relevant details about your preparation or specialization in the field. This is a good place to share your academic plans, research interests, and future career goals. Read tips on how to craft your Statement of Purpose.

The Personal History statement describes how your own background and experiences influenced your decision to pursue a graduate degree. Read tips on how to write your Personal History statement.

If you are a U.S. citizen or current permanent resident, the non-refundable application fee is $135; for all others, the fee is $155.

Fee Waiver: U.S. citizens or permanent residents who demonstrate financial need or have participated in an eligible program may apply for an application fee waiver. See guidelines for waivers.

Fee Exemption: Some programs do not require the application fee payment. See guidelines for fee exemption.