Student Services

Our International Student Services team is here to help you before and during your visiting-student experience.

Admission Requirements

Applications are open to university students (undergraduate and graduate level).

Minimum Academic Requirements
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{{ }} English-Language Proficiency Requirement

If English is not your first language, you must submit official evidence of English-language proficiency.

Because English-language proficiency test centers are closed due to COVID-19, you can meet our English-language requirement in any of the following ways:

Test Scores

  • TOEFL: {{ program.toefl }}
  • IELTS Academic Format: {{ program.ielts }}
  • DAAD: {{ program.daad }}
  • {{ program.C1Adv }}
  • TEM-4 or TEM-8: Level {{ program.tem }}

iBT Special Home Edition and myBest scores are accepted. Scores must be from the past two years.


If you do not meet any of the above criteria, you can request an English-language interview through our department. If you are interested in this option, please select, "I would like to request an English interview" in your online application.

Note: Transcripts and credentials should reflect the program that you completed in English. Our Admissions department will assess all documentation and inform you if additional items are needed. Please note that our admissions process is holistic and meeting the English-language proficiency requirement does not guarantee acceptance. Email with questions or to learn more.


You may request a waiver if you meet one of the following requirements:

  • You have completed one year of full-time college-level instruction entirely in the English language.
  • You have successfully completed a university-level program in a country or region where English is the official language.
  • You are from a country or region on the exempt list. Contact an adviserContact an adviser for more information.

Choosing a place to live depends on your interests, preferences and budget.

With options available in both Berkeley and San Francisco, you can live in the bustling atmosphere of a dormitory, enjoy the independence of a private or shared apartment, or get the personal attention of a homestay.

We encourage you to research options and confirm housing before arriving by directly contacting any of the housing providers below. We can help you contact these housing providers, but the housing agreement is between you and the housing provider, not the University of California. We do not endorse any of the following housing providers but offer them for informational purposes only. Make sure you read and analyze all details and contracts for your off-campus housing before making any legal commitments.

Housing Assistance

Want to learn more about housing in Berkeley and the Bay Area, average prices, tips for finding housing and more? Check out the UC Berkeley Graduate Assembly (GA) resource The GA's Housing Guide: Best Practices for Finding Housing.

For additional assistance or information, please download and complete the Housing Interest Form (PDF) and email any questions to

Once you are accepted into a UC Berkeley Extension program, you will also be granted access to a private Berkeley housing Facebook group. This group is a great resource as members often share new housing resources, tips and posts about housing or room openings.

Dormitories and Student Housing


San Francisco

Private or Shared Apartments


San Francisco


If your status is anything other than F-1, please consult with International Student Services (ISS) about your eligibility to study or to change your visa status.

Applying for Your Student Visa

A Form I-20 is the certificate of eligibility issued by a Designated School Official (DSO) at the school where you wish to enroll. It shows that you have been admitted to an F-1 approved school and provides information about your program and dates of study.

SEVIS is a web-based system for maintaining information on international nonimmigrant students and exchange visitors in the United States. UC Berkeley Extension has been approved by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to accept F-1 students and we are required to report the following information through SEVIS:

  • Your name*
  • Date and city of birth*
  • Country of citizenship*
  • Foreign address
  • U.S. address
  • Email address
  • Phone number

*Schools are required to report this information for all dependents in the U.S. as well.

U.S. schools are also required to notify SEVIS if:

  • there is a change in your U.S. address.
  • there is a change in your present full-time status.
  • you withdraw from school or stop attending courses.
  • you fail to maintain full-time status.

The I-901 SEVIS fee is a $350 fee that all international students are required to pay. This fee helps fund the Student and Exchange Visitor Program that makes it possible for international students to pursue their studies in the United States. Please remember that this fee is separate from any visa fees charged by an embassy or consulate and school fees charged by the university.

  • Prospective students with an "Initial Attendance" Form I-20
  • Prospective students with an "Initial Attendance" Form I-20 who are applying for a change to F-1 status from another visa category
  • F-1 students in the U.S. filing for reinstatement if they have been out of status for more than five months

Note: F-2 dependents do not have to pay the SEVIS fee.

As a prospective F-1 student, regulation requires that you pay the I-901 SEVIS fee before the Department of State will issue you a visa. To pay the fee with a credit card, log on to and complete the form. Be sure to write your name exactly as it appears on your I-20. Be sure to print a copy of the online receipt and bring it to your visa interview.

If you are transferring schools, extending your program, applying for an F-2 dependent visa, or have paid the SEVIS fee within the last 12 months, you do not need to pay the SEVIS fee.

To apply for an F-1 student visa, start by locating your nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. Visit to search for embassy locations in your home country. If you click on the embassy that you would like to visit, you will be directed to that embassy's services.

Complete the Form DS-160 by following the instructions listed on the website. Answer all of the questions listed on the form to the best of your abilities. The Form DS-160 is used for many different kinds of visa applications, so be aware that some of the questions may not be relevant to you and your purposes for coming to the U.S.

To prepare for a successful visa interview, please ensure that you gather all of your required documents. It is also best to practice how you will respond to common interview questions. Make sure that your answers are clear and concise since visa interviews can be very brief. During your interview, remain calm and answer all the consular officer's questions openly and honestly.

Consular officers do security checks for all visa applicants. They do special security clearances for some applicants as required by law. Students who study scientific and technical subjects are subject to additional background checks. These clearances may take several weeks or longer. Be sure to make your visa appointment well in advance of your intended travel.

If your F-1 visa application is denied, you will receive a formal notification in the mail. Email us right away and attach this notification so we can best advise you on next steps.

Visitors admitted to the United States on a B-1 or B-2 tourist visa are strictly prohibited from enrolling in any of our full-time programs. To enroll in one of our full-time programs, you must either obtain an F-1 nonimmigrant visa from a consular officer abroad and seek readmission to the U.S., or apply to one of our international programs online and request a change of status.

Maintaining Your Visa Status

Hand-carry the following documents during your trip:

  • Signed Form I-20
  • Passport and F-1 visa
  • Paper receipt for the SEVIS fee payment (Form I-901)
  • The name and contact information of your designated school official:

    Olga Paly

    International Student Adviser (PDSO)

    +1 510-409-6156

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) gathers all travelers' arrival/departure information.

The I-94 is an online record of your arrival/departure to/from the U.S. and indicates on which visa you were admitted to the U.S. You can find your most recent I-94 after you arrive in the U.S. from the CBP I-94 website. The I-94 is used to verify immigration status, report your arrival to your school, apply for a driver's license and other uses.

You should be fully aware of all F-1 regulations and it is your responsibility to maintain your F-1 nonimmigrant status while you are in the U.S. Please carefully read page 3 of your I-20; note that violation of any of these conditions could lead to serious consequences. ISS is here and available to help you understand the various F-1 regulations that affect you. If you have any questions about your visa or status, please make an appointment with an international student adviser.

  • You must be a full-time student.
  • You must report any address change (permanent, overseas and/or U.S.) to UC Berkeley Extension within 10 days.
  • If you are transferring from another school, you must complete the transfer procedure within 15 days of the program start date noted on your Form I-20.
  • You are not permitted to accept employment off campus without prior authorization.
  • You must leave the U.S. or take action before the end of your 60-day grace period.

An F-1 student is admitted to the U.S. for a period known as "Duration of Status," which is recorded on your entry documents I-94 and I-20 with the notation "D/S." Duration of Status refers to the period a student is pursuing a full course of study, plus any authorized practical training following completion.

As an F-1 student, you are granted a 60-day grace period after your program end date, during which you are allowed to remain in the U.S. During your grace period, you may do any one of the following options:

  • Travel within the U.S.
  • Transfer to another U.S. school
  • Prepare for departure from the U.S.

If you are unable to depart the U.S. within your 60-day grace period, please contact your international student adviser.

All F-1 students must maintain a full-course load while in the U.S. Minimum full-time enrollment can vary per program, however, generally, undergraduate programs require a minimum of 12 units while professional programs require a minimum of 8 units per semester. Generally, students may enroll in a maximum of 1 online course as part of their full-time requirements. Please verify this information with your specific program.

Students who are unable to maintain a full course load may be able to request a reduced course load due to medical or certain academic reasons. Students must obtain an approval from the international student adviser for an RCL before dropping below full-time academic status. Please consult with ISS if you wish to apply for authorization to drop below full-time.

An F-1 student who is unable to complete their program before the program completion date on the Form I-20 may apply for an extension. Students must have continually maintained status, have the approval of their academic department, and be making normal progress toward their academic goals.

Delays caused by academic probation or suspension are not acceptable reasons for program extensions. A DSO may not grant an extension if the student did not apply for an extension before the program end date noted on the Form I-20.

An F-1 student who is unable to complete the educational program within the time listed on Form I-20 and who is ineligible for program extension is considered out of status.

Transferring Schools

When transferring between schools, F-1 students must have maintained their F-1 status. (If your visa status is not F-1, please contact us at about your eligibility.)

F-1 students who are transferring to Berkeley Global from another U.S. school, college, or university will need to:

  1. Apply and be admitted to a Berkeley Global Program.
  2. Once admitted, contact the international student adviser at your school to fill out the Transfer Verification Form (form will be sent upon admission) and arrange for the release of their SEVIS record.
  3. Instruct the DSO at your last school to release and transfer out your SEVIS record to UC Berkeley Extension after confirming your full-time F-1 status.
    1. The UC Berkeley Extension SEVIS School Code is SFR214F01888000.
  4. Our International Student Services (ISS) team will then process your transfer in and issue an I-20 to you.

In order to transfer from our programs to another U.S. school, please notify International Student Services (ISS) by emailing with your intent to transfer. Indicate the name of the school to which you want to transfer, the date you wish your SEVIS record to be released to the new school and proof of your acceptance to the new school.

Note: Although you may be applying to multiple new schools, we can only transfer your SEVIS record to one school. Once your SEVIS record is transferred out, we will no longer have access to your record. If you change your mind and wish to attend a different school, you must work with the school that receives your SEVIS record.

Work Authorization Rules for F-1 Students

If you are a student with an F-1 status and hold an I-20 from UC Berkeley Extension, you are eligible to work on the UC Berkeley campus up to 20 hours per week when school is session and full-time during school breaks.

Learn more about on-campus employment rules.

If you are suffering from a severe economic hardship due to unforeseen changes in your financial circumstances, you may apply to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (U.S. CIS) for authorization to work off-campus. You must:

  • Be able to demonstrate unforeseen severe financial problems.
  • Be recommended by DSO to apply for part-time work authorization. An Employment Authorization Card issued by U.S. CIS is required.
  • Have been in F-1 status for one academic year.

Please talk to your international student adviser before applying for this status.

For general information, visit F-1 Off Campus Employment and International Organization Internship.

CPT provides students with temporary work authorization in the US. Similar to OPT, a student must be enrolled full-time for at least one academic year, but unlike OPT, CPT must be an integral part of the students' program of study. CPT must be granted by a DSO and work done while on CPT must be directly related to a student's field of study. Only students in certain programs are eligible for CPT.

Learn more about CPT and speak to UC Berkeley Extension staff about further questions.

OPT is work that is directly related to an F-1 student's major area of study. It is intended to provide students with practical experience in their field of study upon completion of a program.

An F-1 student must meet these basic requirements:

  • Lawful enrollment on a full-time basis for one full academic year
  • Successful completion of the course of study
  • Receive a certificate from their course of study

A student may be authorized for a maximum of 12 months of practical training and may become eligible for another 12 months of practical training when he/she changes to a higher educational level. Learn more about OPT and speak to UC Berkeley Extension staff with further questions.

Note that only post-completion OPT is available to international students enrolled at UC Berkeley Extension.

No, generally, our students are not eligible. Only students who are eligible for a two-year STEM OPT extension can apply for an OPT extension based on the following criteria:

  1. The student received a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) degree in the United States;
  2. The student's employer is enrolled in E-Verify; and
  3. The student has received an initial grant of post-completion OPT related to such a degree.

The {{}} provides a full visiting-student, immersive learning experience on the UC Berkeley campus. Not only will you be learning from our top {{program.midName}} faculty, but you'll also have plenty of opportunities for activities and resources to enhance your learning, as well as your personal and professional growth. Find out what makes this program a great value and how to fund your experience at UC Berkeley.

Program Cost

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What's Included?


  • All {{program.midName}} coursework
  • Visits from Bay Area and national private law firms and public-interest law organizations
  • Undergrad research and student learning center resources
  • Certificate of completion

Arriving to Berkeley

Graduate School and Career Preparation

  • Career counseling and resources
  • Graduate school admissions advising, workshops and panel presentations

What's Not Included?

  • Travel to/from the United States
  • Textbooks
  • Visa fees
  • Meals or living expenses (estimated at $10,500 per semester)

Additional Funding Ideas

Talk to staff at your home university's international programs or study-abroad office, as well as the financial aid office. Often additional scholarships or loans may be available that can cover costs such as travel or partial tuition.

Contact the educational and cultural department of your city or state government to inquire about funding for your international education experience.

We know you're traveling far from home to participate in a unique visiting student experience.

You'll be studying at a top university known for its rigorous academic standards. This means that while you're here, it's more important than ever to focus on your health and well-being.

Here are some resources we offer to ensure that you are happy, stress-free, healthy and successful during your time in Berkeley.

Staying Healthy

Maintaining your health and well-being is an important part of your learning and program experience, so it's good news that Berkeley is ranked one of the Top 10 healthiest cities in the United States.

You'll have access to a variety of support and student services. You begin your program with a mandatory new student orientation where you will go over important information about your student health insurance, among other topics. You will be enrolled in our health insurance coverage for the duration of your program. You can find the details for the school-sponsored insurance plan, currently provided by Anthem Blue Cross Life and Health Insurance Company (PDF). You'll receive an insurance identification card that you can use to fill prescriptions, visit the doctor and more. The insurance company also provides translations of health plan summaries that you can download online—in case you prefer to read details about your coverage in your native language.

In addition to basic health insurance, you are also eligible for mental health services. Find out about International Student Counseling and Psychology Services available to you at the Tang Center, part of University Health Services.

Urgent Care is immediate medical attention for non-life-threatening medical conditions that need to be immediately addressed.

A smiling and diverse group of Berkeley students walking through our campus

Staying Safe

Safety is every student's responsibility and we provide numerous resources—both on- and off-campus—to help you stay safe. Safety is another topic discussed in your student orientation: We'll go over things like the 100 emergency telephones located on and around campus and the numerous safety services available to you 24 hours a day, every day of the week.


Emergency Services 911: You may dial 9-1-1 from any phone to reach emergency services. If dialed from a cell phone, 9-1-1 reaches the California Highway Patrol, a state agency that principally patrols the freeways. If dialed from a landline, 9-1-1 reaches an emergency center that automatically identifies your precise location, and can dispatch police, fire or ambulance.

We suggest adding the following phone numbers into your phone for quick access.

  • University of California Berkeley Police Department phone number: (510) 642-3333
  • Berkeley City Police Department phone number: (510) 981-5911


The Sutter Alta Bates Medical Center: Herrick Campus is located just outside of the main UC Berkeley Campus. This facility will accept your insurance if you are enrolled in our student health insurance plan.

Fire Department

Fire Department website

Berkeley Fire Department
2100 Martin Luther King Jr. Way
Berkeley, CA 94704

Prepare for an Emergency

  • Get familiar with simple emergency procedures by visiting the website of the UCB Emergency Management Office.
  • Download the app for real-time updates on your phone or mobile device.
  • If you have difficulty speaking English during times of stress, write down in advance the information you will need to give doctors, police officers, or other emergency workers.
  • Get to know some of your neighbors. People are more likely to help someone they know than a stranger. People are also more likely to "watch over" your home in your absence if they know you.
  • California experiences earthquakes but most are very small. Still, you should be prepared by having food and water, plus a flashlight on hand.


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Connect With an Academic Adviser

Student Services Adviser Lauren Cooper

Lauren Cooper

Email Address:

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