Ever wondered what it would be like to go deep-sea diving?
Bet you didn’t know that it was a UC Berkeley Chemistry Professor that made it possible… we didn’t!
UCB prides itself on a number of accomplishments and ranks highly in a number of areas. With a 14.8% average UC Berkeley acceptance rate 2020 for incoming, Out-of-State Freshmen, admissions are definitely competitive.
Don’t be intimidated! As always, we’re here to help.
Keep reading to learn more about UC Berkeley admissions requirements.
Step #1: A 3.89 weighted GPA or higher
Wondering what GPA do you need to get into berkeley? Well it’s a 3.89! These are high expectations! But they’re not impossible to achieve. If attending Cal Berkeley truly is your student’s dream, you have some options to give their GPA a boost:
- If you struggle in school or are sitting just below those UC Berkeley admissions requirements, look into tutoring. Yeah, it’ll cost you some money now, but it can easily pay off later with scholarships and your student’s college diploma.
- Help yourselves to FREE academic resources by becoming a Student-Tutor member. Click here to learn more!
Step #2: 1415 on the 1600 SAT scale
This college really does pride itself on pursuing excellence — they’re not playing around UC berkeley requirements. That’s why I can’t stress it enough — use your resources. Study for the SAT as well as the ACT very carefully because they put high emphasis on the scores you achieve on those two tests during your UC Berkeley application.
ALSO, take note: for Chemistry or Engineering Majors: The SAT 2 Subject Tests are strongly recommended.
Which brings us to our next point…
Step #3: Research your major/program
You wouldn’t call a heart surgeon to come fix your TV.
What’s our point here?
An electrician and a heart surgeon “fix” things, but they have completely different skill sets to do it. Likewise, different majors and programs have requirements that are specific to them so you have to identify your college major that you will be taking.
You can figure out what major/program you’re interested in by using UCB’s Academic Guide for Undergraduate Degrees. This is a convenient tool on their website that allows you to select your student’s interests and find majors that they would like.
When you click on a major, you’ll find the information your student needs as far as any prerequisites, specific acceptance scores, and all that jazz.
If you want additional information, contact someone in the specific program’s department.
Step #4: Take your UC Berkeley Admissions Test no later than December of your graduating year
Basically, you won’t be considered otherwise! To keep your student on track for this as far as test preparation, you can make use of a planner.
How does a planner help?
Well, the best way to stay on track with this is to break your one big goal of Taking the UC Berkeley Admissions Test into smaller, SMART goals that will get you there over time. Remember, a SMART goal is all of the following:
Step #5: Have a stellar UC Berkeley Admissions Essay
Alright, look alive! This is one of the most important things considered in admissions to Cal Berkeley.
Is it really that important?
What, don’t believe me? 😉 The Institutional Research Department at UCB lists the Admissions Essay/Personal Statement as “Very Important” in terms of acceptance, along with “Rigor of Secondary School Record”, “Academic GPA”, and “Standardized Test Scores — so there ya go!
If you aren’t confident with your essay writing skills, here is a list of some articles by Student-tutor that you might find helpful:
Wondering what you should write about?
We looked through the essays of students who were accepted to UCB to find some trends.
1. Elevated Language
3. Specific and Individually-Centered Examples
4. Reflective Insight
Step #6: Use the comments section of your essay
If your GPA is lower than what is stated above, there is a chance you can still get in. UC Berkeley reviews students’ applications with a holistic approach.
Holistic? What does that mean?
It means that IF your GPA is lower than the average accepted, or IF your test scores are sub par, you have a chance to say why.
And guess where you can say it?
The comments section of your essay! Unrelated to the prompt of your Admission Essay, this is where you can explain to UC Berkeley what happened, and they will take it into consideration.
Step #7: Optimize your Extracurricular Activities
UCB is interested in what your student does with their time. Here’s a chance to ask what your student’s been up to, so…
Do they exhibit leadership skills? Do they work well in groups?
Specifically, Cal Berkeley pays attention to the following when considering admission:
- Character and Personality Traits
- Volunteer Work
- Work Experience
You’re in luck, because we have an article just for this! Follow the steps to create the perfect Extracurricular profile for your student’s UCB application.
Step #8: Create a MyFinAid Account
UC Berkeley has what is called a MyFinAid Account. If you are eligible for financial awards such as scholarships, this is how you view those awards.
AND to make it easier for you, UC Berkeley has this all laid out for you in a lovely tutorial video!
As with all schools, there are various scholarships available for UCB students. For example, the Berkeley College Achievement Award: Incoming full-time and part-time students with a 2.50 grade point average (GPA) or higher will be considered for receiving up to $3,000 a year.
To see other awards available you can view the entire Financial Aid Catalog of UC Berkeley.
Alright, let’s review. To pass the UC Berkeley admissions requirements and be a Golden Bear, we recommend the following:
- A 3.89 weighted GPA or higher
- 1415 on the 1600 SAT scale
- Research your major/program (Use UCB’s Academic Guide!)
- Take your UC Berkeley Admissions Test no later than December of your graduating year
- Do well on your UC Berkeley Admissions Essay (Remember the points I gave you!)
- Use the comments section of your essay (if needed)
- Optimize your Extracurricular Activities
- Access scholarships and other awards through your MyFinAid Account
Have any other helpful information about UC Berkeley admissions requirements for us? Tell us in the comments below!