The nation’s premier research university
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Since Nobel Laureate Ernest O. Lawrence unlocked our understanding of the atom with his invention of the cyclotron in 1929, researchers at Berkeley and in the College of Letters and Science continued to inspire generations with their ingenuity, making this university a hallmark of research excellence. Our faculty members win top awards transform our lives, change the way we think about the world, and make news around the globe with their groundbreaking research.
From discoveries about the expanding universe to creating atomic-sized engines and exploring new approaches to treating AIDS, Berkeley is the home to big concepts and great minds that probe them.
With more distinguished research programs than any other U.S. university, Berkeley and L&S offer students research excellence across the disciplines — in the physical and biological sciences as well as in the humanities and social studies. Students in the College of Letters and Science learn from and work alongside the world’s best and sometimes most celebrated scientists and scholars.
Each year, the Berkeley campus receives over half a billion dollars in research support, which funds the groundbreaking work of some 1,500 full-time faculty, 9,000 graduate students, and 12,000 post-doctoral fellows. The research is conducted within the university’s academic departments (which often house laboratories and other research facilities), as well as in numerous research institutes and centers, museums, and field stations.
The research programs are organized around broad research topics and draw upon the faculty and students from multiple departments and disciplines.
Berkeley’s high standing is due to the distinction of our faculty, the excellence of our Ph.D. programs, and the generous amount of funding for research programs. According to the latest rankings of the NRC, Berkeley has the highest number of graduate programs ranked in the top 10 in the nation, making it America’s premier research university.