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Admissions Blog

Basic Admissions Requirements

Standardized Tests

All applicants are required to take the GRE General Test. International applicants: GRE test dates are offered less frequently abroad. Spots fill up quickly. REGISTER FOR A TEST DATE EARLY!



GRE scores dated before June 2010 are no longer valid. To ensure you meet the application deadline, you should take the GRE no later than November 10, 2014. 

Institution code: 4833. You do not need to list a department code. 

Deadline: Official GRE scores are due the same day the application is due, December 2, 2014. There are fields on the application for applicants to submit self-report GRE scores. These will serve as placeholders until we receive the official scores from ETS.


All applicants are required to take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) general test. The LSAT and GMAT cannot be substituted for the GRE.


Who is required to take the TOEFL? All applicants from countries in which the official language is not English are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). TOEFL and IELTS tests taken before June 2013 will not be accepted. 

Institution code: 4833


Establishing California Residency

If your are not a California resident, you can establish residency by the second year of the program if you follow the appropriate guidelines. Becoming a California resident will save you approximately $13,000 in out-of-state fees! The following resources provide more information about establishing California residency:

  • At the Office of the Registrar, you can find information about:
    • How residency is determined
    • How to Complete the Statement of Legal Residence/Applying for Residency
    • How to establish Residency for Tuition Purposes
    • 10 Things Graduates Need to Know about California Residence for Purposes of Tuition and Fees
    • How to fulfill Physical Presence and Intent
    • How to fulfill Financial Independence
    • Residency Calendar/Deadlines
    • Nonresident Supplemental Tuition Exemptions/Waivers
    • How to maintain California Residency during a Temporary Absence
    • What if I am not a US Citizen or Permanent Resident
    • Inquiries and Appeals
    • Legal Residence Information
    • FAQs
    • Contact Residence

Financial Support

Academic Student Employment, Summer Policy Internship, & Advanced Policy Analysis

Fellowships and financial aid are just one way our students afford GSPP. There are also plenty of opportunities to secure financial support once you are enrolled:

Financial Support

Tuition, Fellowships, & Financial Aid

Financial support can be a major consideration when applying to graduate school. Below you will find resources about affording your education, including tuition, fellowships, and financial aid. 

Basic Admissions Requirements

Required Transcripts

Please note, Graduate Admissions requires applicants to upload unofficial transcripts or academic records (name of school must appear on transcript) for the initial review of their application. For those that accept the offer of admission, they will be required to provide official transcripts or academic records. Please refrain from sending official, sealed hard copies of your transcripts until you receive an offer of admission from the Graduate Division.

Read on for information about:

  • Study abroad transcripts
  • Transcripts from past UC Berkeley students
  • PPIA transcripts
  • Transcripts required of international applicants

Read more

Basic Admissions Requirements: International Students

Do I need to take the TOEFL?

Evidence of English Language Proficiency

All applicants from countries in which the official language is not English are required to submit official evidence of English language proficiency. This requirement applies to applicants from Bangladesh, Nepal, India, Pakistan, Latin America, the Middle East,  Israel, the People’s Republic of China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asia, most European countries, and non-English-speaking countries in Africa.

If you have completed at least one year of full-time academic course work with grades of B or better in residence at a recognized U.S. institution, you do not need to take a standardized test. Instead, you must upload an unofficial transcript from the recognized U.S. institution.

To qualify for a TOEFL exemption you must:

  • 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 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 a grade B or better at a regionally accredited institution within the United States.

Please see the Graduate Divison to learn more about TOEFL requirements and qualifying for an exemption.

Basic Admissions Requirements

From the Graduate Division

The minimum UC Berkeley graduate admission requirements are:

  1. 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 to do graduate work in your chosen field.

*Please note that these are Graduate Division minimum standards, and GSPP admissions stats and requirements often exceed these minimums.

Read more

Requesting an Application Fee Waiver


If you are a U.S. citizen or current permanent resident, the application fee is $90; for all others, the fee is $110. The application fee is not re­fundable.

You must be a U.S. citizen or current permanent resident to be eligible for the graduate admissions application fee waiver.

There are two ways in which you may qualify for an application fee waiver:

  • You are a current or past participant in certain programs (e.g. PPIA) that qualify for a fee waiver, or
  • You can demonstrate financial need.

Information about how to apply for a fee waiver can be found at the Graduate Division.

2014-2015 GSPP Program Bulletin

The 2014-2015 GSPP Program Bulletin is out! The Bulletin is an amazing resource for information about degree programs, faculty, application instructions, financial aid, career services, & student organizations.

Fall 2014 MPP Admissions Events

The Goldman School is coming to a city near you. Speak with GSPP Admissions and/or GSPP Alumni to learn about admissions requirements, the MPP curriculum, and life at GSPP.

Information Sessions at GSPP

Berkeley, CA

Keep checking our Admissions Events page for more opportunities to learn about the Goldman School!