University of California, Berkeley – Tuition and Fees
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By Susan Guillory
(Last Updated – 05/2023)
Total Cost of Attendance
The University of California at Berkeley (known as UC Berkeley) is located in sunny California, and is known for its high standards for academic excellence. UC Berkeley tuition for the 2023-24 school year for in-state students is estimated at $15,444 and $48,018 for out-of-state students.
Compare this to the national average of $10,940 for in-state students and $28,240 for out-of-state students.
Estimated Costs for 2023-24
Tuition & Fees
Total Cost of Attendance
More than half of the students (61%) have some sort of financial aid to help cover UC Berkeley tuition. That includes scholarships, grans, and loans. Berkeley is need-blind, which means your ability to pay for your schooling will not be considered with your application.
Generally, financial aid is monetary assistance awarded to students based on personal need and merit. Students that qualify for financial aid can use it to pay for college costs like tuition, books, and living expenses.
The federal government is the largest provider of student financial aid. However, aid can also be given by state governments, colleges and universities, private companies, and nonprofits. The different types include:
• Scholarships: These can be awarded by schools and other organizations based on students’ academic excellence, athletic achievement, community involvement, job experience, field of study, and financial need.
• Grants: Generally based on financial need, these can come from federal, state, private, and non-profit organizations.
• Work-study: This federal program provides qualifying students with part-time employment to earn money for expenses while in school.
• Federal student loans: This is money borrowed directly from the U.S. Department of Education. It comes with fixed interest rates that are typically lower than private loans.
Colleges, universities, and state agencies use the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine financial aid eligibility. The FAFSA can be completed online, but note that state and federal and school deadlines may differ.
You can find other financial aid opportunities on databases such as:
When it comes to student loans, there are both federal and private student loans available. At Berkeley, 15% of students take out federal student loans and 6% take out private loans. The average private student loan per year is $7,122.
Private loans are funded by private organizations such as banks, online lenders, credit unions, some schools, and state-based or state-affiliated organizations. While Federal student loans have interest rates that are regulated by Congress, private lenders follow a different set of regulations so their qualifications and interest rates can vary widely.
What’s more, private loans have variable or fixed interest rates that may be higher than federal loan interest rates, which are always fixed. Private lenders may (but don’t always) require you to make payments on your loans while you are still in school, compared to federal student loans which you don’t have to start paying back until after you graduate, leave school, or change your enrollment status to less than half-time.
Private loans don’t have a specific application window and can be applied for on an as-needed basis. However, if you think you may need to take out a private loan, it’s a good idea to submit your FAFSA first to see what federal aid you may qualify for as it generally may have better rates and terms.
If you’ve missed the FAFSA deadline or you’re struggling to pay for school throughout the year, private loans can potentially help you make your payments. Just keep in mind that you will need enough lead time for your loan to process and for your lender to send money to your school.
Over four years, a degree at Berkeley will cost (based on 2023-24 estimated numbers) approximately $184,032 for in-state students. This is higher than the average four-year program at public universities in the U.S. of $111,760.
Students who are residents of the state of California will pay $15,444 for UC Berkeley tuition in 2023-24, $20,576 for room and board, and $3,858 for student health insurance, for a total of $39,878 per year. Students from other states will pay $48,018 for tuition, $20,576 for room and board, and $3,858 for student health insurance, for a total of $72,452 per year. There are student loans available to help with these costs.
Graduate Tuition and Fees
Estimated Costs for 2023-24
Total Cost of Attendance
Berkeley offers several highly-respected graduate programs. For in-state students, tuition and fees is estimated at $15,094 in 2023-24 and $30,196 for out-of-state students. There are graduate loans available to help with these costs.
Campus Housing Expenses
Estimated Costs for 2023-24
Books & Supplies
Room & Board
*Starting rate for a studio based on available apartments on Berkeley’s off-campus housing website in 2023.
In addition to UC Berkeley tuition, students must pay for housing, either on campus or off. While freshmen aren’t required to live on campus, 96% choose to, enjoying amenities in one of the seven residence halls.
Those opting to live off-campus have many options, and Berkeley offers many resources to help you find the right apartment, duplex, or house for your needs. This guide can help with off-campus living.
UC Berkeley Acceptance Rate
Number of applications
At just 11.4%, the Berkeley acceptance rate is low, making the university quite competitive.
Berkeley has high standards for admissions. Here are the things that are required or recommended with your application.
• Meet the A-G subject course requirements (find out more here)
• Have a 3.0 GPA in A-G courses taken in the 10th and 11th grade years (3.4 GPA for non-residents)
• Letters of recommendation
SAT and ACT Scores
UC Berkeley is test-free, meaning you are not required to submit SAT or ACT scores with your application. If you choose to submit them, your scores may be used for placement or credit purposes.
Since the university is test-free, they no longer report test score percentiles.
Popular Majors at UC Berkeley
Berkeley has more than 130 academic departments and 80 interdisciplinary research units. Here are the most popular majors at Berkeley.
1. Computer Science
Berkeley’s computer science program ranks as one of the top three in the country and covers both a study of multiple programming languages, as well as courses in theory of computation, the architecture and logic design of computers, and artificial intelligence.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 718
Berkeley’s economics program is ranked one of the best in the world. Economics students learn about labor, land, investments, taxes, and governments.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 700
3. Molecular & Cellular Biology
With state-of-the-art research facilities, the molecular and cell biology program teaches students about molecular structures and processes of cellular life and their roles in the function, reproduction, and development of living organisms.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 694
4. Electrical & Electronics Engineering
Combining fundamentals of both computer science and electrical engineering, this program offers both a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Arts degree. It includes math and science courses as well as non-technical courses.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 498
5. Political Science & Government
Students of political science will learn about political ideas, the U.S. and international political systems, and ethical problems of power.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 437
6. Business Administration
The highly-competitive business administration program and Berkeley’s Hass Undergraduate Program offer different pathways: Global Management Program, Management, Entrepreneurship & Technology, and the Robinson Life Sciences, Business, and Entrepreneurship (LBSE) Program.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 409
Students in psychology learn about behavior neuroscience, developmental, clinical science, cognition, cognitive neuroscience, and social-personality psychology. They also learn to use critical thinking and research, and have the opportunity to aid in research studies.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 280
Berkeley offers one of the best sociology programs in the world, and as of 2020, offers a Sociological Research Methods Concentration. This concentration provides a higher level of expertise in data collection and/or analysis.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 258
9. Mass Communication/Media Studies
Students majoring in media studies look at communications and media technologies, industries, policies, and culture in the U.S. and globally.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 226
10. Environmental Studies
Berkeley offers several majors in environmental studies, including environmental earth science, environmental design and urbanism in developing countries, environmental economics and policy, environmental engineering, environmental engineering science, and environmental sciences.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 207
This here can help you learn more about all the majors Berkeley offers.
Students who started their studies at Berkeley in 2016 had the following rate of graduation:
• 4 years: 81%
• 6 years: 94%
Post-Graduation Median Earnings
Berkeley graduates go on to do great things…and get paid well to do them! The average salary of graduates is $88,046, whereas the median for college graduates in the U.S. is $55,260.
Berkeley is an affordable and excellent option for students who live in California. For those who don’t, the price tag is high, but the benefits are many. And given that Berkeley is need-blind, even if you can’t afford to pay out of pocket, you can still be accepted, as long as you meet the school’s rigorous requirements to qualify.
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