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University of California-Berkeley

110 Sproul Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA

University of California-Berkeley award
University of California-Berkeley award
US ranking
position: 46
Tuition & fees per year: $14,959
Acceptance rate: 14.00%
Median alumni salary: $54,348
Avg. SAT and ACT: N/A
Entrance difficulty: N/A

Courtesy of University of California-Berkeley

What is the history of University of California-Berkeley?

The history of University of California-Berkeley dates back to the mid-19th century, with its establishment on March 23, 1868, through the Organic Act. This made it the state's first land-grant university. The origins of the university can be traced back even further to October 13, 1849, when the Constitution of California called for the creation of a public university.

The land that currently makes up the campus of University of California-Berkeley was purchased in 1866 by the College of California, a private institution in Oakland founded by Henry Durant. Concurrently, the state of California established an agricultural, mining, and mechanical arts college to secure federal funds under the Morrill Act. This act, signed into law by Abraham Lincoln in 1862, authorized the distribution of government land grants for funding public institutions.

In 1867, the financially struggling College of California agreed to merge with the state college after Governor Frederick Low brokered the deal. This merger transformed the University of California into a public institution. The university was initially located in Oakland but moved to its present location in Berkeley in 1873. The campus was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the architect behind New York City's Central Park, and is home to the Hearst Memorial Mining Building, a National Historic Landmark completed in 1907.

Throughout its history, University of California-Berkeley has been known for academic excellence and innovation. In 1912, the university established the California Law Review, now one of the country's most prestigious law journals. In 1930, it became the first university in the United States to offer a degree in nuclear engineering. The university has also been at the forefront of research in fields such as computer science, biotechnology, and renewable energy.

University of California-Berkeley has also been a center of political activism and social change. During the 1960s, the campus was a hub of student protests against the Vietnam War and for civil rights. The Free Speech Movement was born at the university in 1964 when students protested against the ban on political speech and advocacy on campus. This movement helped establish the right to free speech on college campuses across the country.

Today, University of California-Berkeley is one of the most prestigious universities in the world, renowned for its academic excellence and groundbreaking research. The university is home to over 42,000 students and 14,000 faculty and staff members. Its alumni include 107 Nobel laureates, 25 Turing Award winners, and 14 Pulitzer Prize winners. The university is also committed to diversity and inclusion, boasting a student body that is among the most diverse in the country.

What are the faculties and departments at University of California-Berkeley?

The University of California-Berkeley boasts an extensive selection of faculties and departments for both undergraduate and graduate students. With 14 colleges and schools, the university provides over 350 degree programs, encompassing 107 bachelor's degrees and various graduate programs in fields such as business administration, education, law, public health, social work, and social welfare.

The largest college at the University of California-Berkeley is the College of Letters & Science, offering majors in humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. For those interested in business, the Haas School of Business provides undergraduate and graduate programs in business administration. The Graduate School of Education focuses on programs in education and teaching, while the School of Law offers a Juris Doctor program. The School of Public Health covers public health and health policy programs, and the School of Social Welfare provides programs in social work and social welfare.

In addition to these colleges and schools, the University of California-Berkeley features interdisciplinary units such as the Applied Science and Technology Graduate Group and the American Cultures program. The university also maintains relationships with three national laboratories located in Berkeley, Livermore, and Los Alamos, and houses various research institutes dedicated to science, engineering, and mathematics.

The College of Chemistry offers programs in chemistry, chemical biology, and chemical engineering at both undergraduate and graduate levels. The College of Engineering provides programs in fields such as bioengineering, civil and environmental engineering, electrical engineering and computer sciences, and mechanical engineering. The College of Environmental Design focuses on architecture, landscape architecture, and urban planning, while the Rausser College of Natural Resources offers programs in environmental science, forestry, and resource economics. Lastly, the School of Information presents undergraduate and graduate programs for students interested in this field.

What is the location of University of California-Berkeley?

The University of California-Berkeley is situated in the city of Berkeley, California, a part of the San Francisco Bay Area. This picturesque campus spans 178 acres and is open to the public, boasting stunning grounds, historic architecture, and redwood forests. The university is conveniently located approximately 20 minutes from San Francisco and is connected to the Downtown Berkeley, North Shattuck, and Telegraph Avenue business districts by walking paths. In addition to its main campus, the University of California-Berkeley owns land in nearby towns such as Albany and Richmond, which includes a married student housing complex and a field research station.

What is the mission and vision of University of California-Berkeley?

Although the mission and vision of the University of California-Berkeley are not explicitly stated on their official website, the institution was established in 1868 with the aim of creating a university that would contribute to the advancement of future generations. Throughout its history, the University of California-Berkeley has made numerous discoveries and contributions to the world, such as the Free Speech Movement, wetsuits, a treatment for malaria, and advancements in earthquake science.

The University of California-Berkeley is dedicated to providing exceptional service, leadership, innovation, and organizational effectiveness through its Administration Division. This division supports and empowers a workforce that is inspired, dedicated, knowledgeable, and service-oriented. Furthermore, the university is committed to incorporating diverse perspectives and experiences into its policies and practices, ensuring equitable representation.

The University of California-Berkeley strives to create a safe, accessible, inclusive, and welcoming campus environment for its community members. It pursues innovation, continuous improvement, accessibility, and sustainability in order to excel in its services and optimize its resources. Additionally, the university is responsible for managing its resources through stewardship.

While the mission and vision of the University of California-Berkeley are not explicitly stated, its dedication to excellence, innovation, diversity, and inclusion can be observed through its values and actions. Prospective students can expect a university that is committed to providing a high-quality education and fostering an inclusive and diverse community.

What is the accreditation of University of California-Berkeley?

The University of California-Berkeley holds full accreditation from the Western Association of Schools & Colleges (WASC), a status it has maintained since 1949. The most recent accreditation review took place in 2015, utilizing the WASC pilot institutional review process. The next scheduled review for the university is set for 2024. Apart from its institutional accreditation, the University of California-Berkeley also boasts specialized accreditations for specific programs, including law, optometry, and public health. Notably, the university's accreditation is recognized by both the Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

University of California-Berkeley Rankings

See where this school lands in our other Rankings to get a bigger picture of the institution's offerings.

27 Most Affordable Colleges in 2023-2024

46 Best Colleges in 2023-2024

48 Most Popular Colleges in 2023-2024

56 Best Value Colleges in the West in 2023-2024 US

270 Best Value Colleges in 2023-2024


University of California-Berkeley Profile - Basic Information

Name of the institution

University of California-Berkeley

Level of institution

Four or more years

Granulation by control over the institution (public/private)


School type


Setting type

City: Midsize

Calendar system


Foundation year


Institution size category

20,000 and above

Main student body


Institutional Category

Degree - granting, primarily baccalaureate or above

University of California-Berkeley Programs and Degrees

iconMaster's degree
iconBachelor's degree
iconPostbaccalaureate certificate
iconPost-master's certificate
iconDoctor's degree - research/scholarship
iconDoctor's degree - professional practice
iconOther degree
iconCertificate of at least 2 years, but less than 4 years
iconAssociate's degree
iconCertificate of less than 1 year
iconCertificate of at least 1 year, but less than 2 years
iconDoctor's degree - other

Alumni Salary for University of California-Berkeley Degrees


Avg. salary

Architecture and Related Services


Area, Ethnic, Cultural, Gender, and Group Studies


Biological and Biomedical Sciences


Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services


Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs


Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services




English Language and Literature/Letters


Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics


Health Professions and Related Programs




Legal Professions and Studies


Mathematics and Statistics


Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies


Natural Resources and Conservation


Philosophy and Religious Studies


Physical Sciences




Public Administration and Social Service Professions


Social Sciences


Visual and Performing Arts