University of California: Courses, Cost, Rankings, Scholarships

University of California: Courses, Cost, Rankings, Scholarships

The University of California (UC) is a public research university system in California, USA, with its main office in Oakland. It comprises ten campuses located across the state, including Berkeley, Davis, Irvine, Los Angeles, Merced, Riverside, San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Barbara, and Santa Cruz. 

Alongside these campuses, UC also hosts numerous research centers and academic abroad centers. Being California’s land-grant university, it is involved in providing quality education and conducting impactful research.

In this article, we’ll provide you with everything you need to know about this prestigious university, including its admission, courses, fees, scholarships, rankings, and a lot more. Whether you’re looking to apply or simply curious about learning about this University, this article is for you!

Introduction to the University of California

The University of California (UC) is a well-known state system with 10 campuses offering top-ranked research and academic programs. It was originally established in 1855 as the College of California, UC, and later got merged with the Agricultural, Mining, and Mechanical Arts College in 1868. 

Campuses like Berkeley and UCLA are known for their research works and offer a wide range of programs. Other campuses like San Diego, Davis, and Santa Barbara specialize in fields like marine science, agriculture & engineering. The system also includes educational centers and research facilities which makes it a cornerstone of higher education in California.

With over 200,000 students enrolled, the university offers a wide array of curricula from undergraduate to doctoral and professional levels.

Additionally, it has extensive resources, including over 100 libraries with more than 30 million volumes and it’s home to the Division of Agriculture & Natural Resources, engages in research across the state, and collaborates on technology research through the California Institutes for Science & Innovation. It also manages the world’s largest network of university-operated nature reserves.

Moreover, UC operates prestigious research facilities such as Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Lick Observatory. Many UC campuses have athletic teams that participate in the NCAA, sporting blue and gold as school colors.

The University of California Admission Criteria

As an international student applying to the University of California (UC), you have the option to apply as a freshman or as a transfer student, depending on your educational background.

Freshman applicants must have completed secondary education and meet specific course requirements, including history, composition, math, science, language, and arts. Additionally, they need to demonstrate English proficiency and meet country-specific requirements. Transfer applicants must have attended college or university after high school and meet UC’s transfer admission criteria, including completing English composition courses.

Application deadlines vary for different quarters/semesters, with fall applications due from October 1 to November 30, winter/spring applications due from July 1 to 31, and spring applications due from October 1 to 31. Applicants must pay a $95 application fee for each campus they apply to. When filling out the application, report your complete academic history accurately, including courses, marks/grades, and external exam scores.

After applying, the university may request official academic records from each institution attended. For freshman applicants, records should cover grade nine onwards, while transfer applicants should provide records from all colleges/universities attended. Letters of recommendation are generally not required for the UC application, but some campuses may request them as part of a supplemental review. Be sure to check for any requests from the campus or you can visit their official website for more details.

The University of California Tuition, Campus Fees, Housing, And Other Costs

Attending a UC school is a smart investment. Most California undergrads get around $18,000 in grants and scholarships to help cover costs like tuition, housing & books. Plus, UC’s Tuition Stability Plan means your tuition stays the same for up to six years, which gives you peace of mind about future costs. 

For California residents, yearly costs range from about ($38,436 to $42,236), including tuition, campus fees, housing, and other expenses. Nonresidents can expect to pay between ($72,636 and $76,436) per year. Keep in mind, that these costs can vary based on where you live and your personal spending habits. But with UC’s financial aid and tuition stability, it’s easier to plan for your education expenses.

The University of California Eligibility, Courses and Fees


For undergraduate international applicants, the application fee is USD 80. Requirements include completing secondary education, submitting an online application, having a 15-year academic course with a GPA of 3.4, providing proof of English proficiency, and SAT/ACT scores.

For postgraduate international applicants, the application fee is USD 155. Requirements include having a bachelor’s degree from a recognized institution, maintaining an average GPA of 3.0, undergraduate training in the chosen field, submitting three letters of recommendation (LORs), providing GRE/GMAT scores as required by the course, and proof of English proficiency.

Courses and Fees

At the University of California Berkeley, there are 184 academic departments that offer over 350 degree courses to international students annually. Popular courses include Social Sciences, Computer and Information Sciences, Engineering, Biology and Biomedical Sciences, Mathematics and Statistics, and Business, Management, and Marketing. UC Berkeley has various colleges and schools, including the School of Business, School of Computing, Data Science and Society, School of Education, School of Engineering, and School of Journalism and Law.

  • MS
    • Tuition Fees: INR 22 L – 63 L
    • Duration: 9 months-5 years
    • Exams Accepted: IELTS: 7 & Above, TOEFL: 90 & Above, GRE
  • B.Sc.
    • Tuition Fees: INR 26 L – 34 L
    • Duration: 4 years
    • Exams Accepted: IELTS: 6.5 & Above, SAT, TOEFL: 80 & Above
  • B.A.
    • Tuition Fees: INR 34 L – 40 L
    • Duration: 4 years
    • Exams Accepted: IELTS: 6.5 & Above, TOEFL: 80 & Above, Duolingo: 115 & Above
  • B.E. / B.Tech
    • Tuition Fees: INR 34 L – 40 L
    • Duration: 4 years
    • Exams Accepted: IELTS: 6.5 & Above, TOEFL: 80 & Above, SAT
    • Tuition Fees: INR 22 L – 68 L
    • Duration: 1 year-4 years
    • Exams Accepted: IELTS: 7 & Above, TOEFL: 90 & Above, GMAT
  • M.A.
    • Tuition Fees: INR 22 L – 37 L
    • Duration: 1 year-3 years
    • Exams Accepted: IELTS, TOEFL
  • MPH
    • Tuition Fees: INR 28 L
    • Duration: 1 year-3 years
    • Exams Accepted: IELTS: 7 & Above, GRE, TOEFL: 90 & Above
  • MIM
    • Tuition Fees: INR 22 L – 67 L
    • Duration: 1 year-4 years
    • Exams Accepted: IELTS: 7 & Above, GMAT, GRE
  • B.J.M.C.
    • Tuition Fees: INR 34 L
    • Duration: 4 years
    • Exams Accepted: IELTS: 6.5 & Above
  • MEng
    • Tuition Fees: INR 43 L – 50 L
    • Duration: 1 year-24 months
    • Exams Accepted: IELTS: 7 & Above, TOEFL: 90 & Above, GRE

University of California Ranking

In the latest QS World University Rankings 2024, UC Berkeley has climbed to (#10) from its previous position of (#27) in 2023, which showcases its significant improvement. Meanwhile, the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) has also risen in ranks, and secured (#29) in 2024 compared to (#44) in 2023, which indicates notable progress. 

Additionally, UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business has been recognized globally and has achieved a good ranking of (#19) in the Financial Times MBA Rankings 2024 category, which highlights its excellence in business education.

The University of California Scholarships

Financial aid at UC is available for various student situations. California residents, undocumented students, and students from other U.S. states can apply for aid using the FAFSA or Dream Act Application. 

International undergraduates usually pay nonresident supplemental tuition but have limited access to loans and scholarships. Keep in mind, that summer expenses aren’t covered in aid packages, and there are limited job opportunities for international students due to U.S. government restrictions.

Veterans and their dependents may be eligible for tuition refunds and other benefits under the Post-9/11 GI Bill. Foster youngsters, student parents, and veterans moving to college can all benefit from help on UC campuses. It is critical to file an FAFSA every year to maximize assistance eligibility, and campus resources are available to help with benefits and financial planning.

University of California Deadline

July1 – 31Winter/spring (2024) application filing period for Merced
August1Application opens for fall (2024) applicants
October – November1 – 30Fall (2024) admission application filing period for all its applicants
December31Filing period opens for FAFSA, California Dream Act Application, and GPA Verification Form
March1 – 31Notification of fall (2024) admission decisions
April2Deadline for FAFSA, California Dream Act Application, and GPA Verification Form
May1Deadline for non-resident freshman students who are admitted to UC Berkeley to submit their SIR
May15Deadline for all other fall (2024) admitted freshmen to submit their SIR
July1Final, official transcripts must be postmarked or electronically submitted to campus admission offices
July15Deadline for official AP & IB examination results to be postmarked or electronically submitted


To conclude, the University of California offers lots of study choices and opportunities to grow personally. Remember to keep an eye on deadlines and what you need for your admission process to stay informed. UC campuses are great places to learn, so make sure to use all the help they offer to make your educational journey awesome. By staying organized and ready, you can boost your chances of getting into this awesome university.

FAQs About University of California

Q. How one can apply for admission in the University of California?

A. Simply visit the UC admissions website and follow the instructions for freshman or transfer applicants.

Q. When are the application deadlines for UC admissions?

A. Application deadlines usually range from October to November for fall admissions. Be sure to check the specific deadlines for your chosen campus and program.

Q. What documents do I need for my UC application?

A. You’ll typically need transcripts, test scores (SAT or ACT), letters of recommendation, and personal statements. Take a thorough look at the application requirements before final submission.

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