Degree Requirements

Summary of Degree Requirements

The College of Letters & Science awards the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree. To earn the B.A., you must successfully complete University, Campus, College and Major course requirements, meet the minimum of Unit and Residence requirements, and be in good academic standing by maintaining minimum GPA requirements. All requirements are designed to ensure that you acquire the background and the breadth you need for further learning, as well as depth of knowledge in your field of interest.

Academic Progress Report

UCB Online Academic Progress Report

L&S Degree Requirements

UCB L&S Degree Requirements part 3 - Seven Course Breadth

University, Campus, College and Major Requirements

University of California Requirements

Berkeley Campus Requirement

L&S Requirements*

Essential Skills 

Seven-Course Breadth 

*IGETC Certification and UC Reciprocity satisfies both Essential Skills and Seven-Course Breadth.

Major Requirements

Go to the Berkeley Academic Guide(link is external) to review the more than 80 majors available in L&S! Review requirements and meet with an undergraduate major adviser (UMA) for your major(s) of interest. Find out more about how to declare by the start of junior year.  

Unit and Residence Requirements

Unit Requirements

120 total semester units. This includes transfer credit admitted to the Berkeley record and advanced high school units admitted to your college record. Of the 120 total:

  • 60 units in L&S courses. This includes courses offered by L&S and courses offered outside L&S that are approved for Seven-Course Breadth or major requirements.
  • 36 upper division units (courses numbered between 100-199) to include 6 units of course work outside your major department. Units earned in cross-listed courses (indicated by a “C” prefix) for which your major department is one of the sponsors are not applicable. Students who pursue graduate-level courses numbered between 200-299 (typically allowed only by instructor consent) may apply those units to the Upper Division Unit requirement.
  • 1/3 Passed (P) Grade Limit: Passed grades may account for no more than one third of the total units completed at UC Berkeley, Fall Program for Freshmen (FPF), UC Education Abroad Program (UCEAP), or UC Berkeley Washington Program (UCDC) toward the 120 overall minimum unit requirement. Transfer credit is not factored into the limit. This is includes transfer units from outside of the UC system, other UC campuses, credit-bearing exams, as well as UC Berkeley Extension XB units.

Unit Restrictions

Special Studies Courses

No more than 16 units in courses numbered 97, 98, 99, 197, 198, or 199 may be applied to the degree. It is strongly recommended that students take no more than 4 units from courses numbered 97, 98, 99, 197, 198 or 199 in any one semester in order to comply with the 16-unit limit.

Physical Education Activity Courses

No more than 4 units may be applied to the degree.

Professional Courses

No more than 6 units from courses numbered 300-499 may be applied to the degree.

Residence Requirements

For units to be considered in "residence," you must be registered in courses on the Berkeley campus (excluding courses taken through UC Extension) as a student in the College of Letters and Science. Most students automatically fulfill the residence requirement by attending classes here for four years. In general, there is no need to be concerned about this requirement, unless you go abroad for a semester or year or want to take courses at another institution or through UC Extension during your senior year. In these cases, you should make an appointment to meet a College Adviser to determine how you can meet the Senior Residence Requirement.

Senior Residence Requirement

  • You may use a Berkeley Summer Session to satisfy one semester of the Senior Residence Requirement, provided that you successfully complete 6 units of course work in the Summer Session and that you have been enrolled previously in the College.

Modified Senior Residence Requirement

Participants in the UC Education Abroad Program (UCEAP), Berkeley Summer Abroad, Berkeley Global Internships, UC Natural Resource System (NRS), or the UC Berkeley Washington Program (UCDC) may meet the Modified Senior Residence Requirement by completing 24 (excluding EAP or UC Extension) of their final 60 semester units in residence. At least 12 of these 24 units must be completed after you have completed 90 units.

L&S Upper Division Residence Requirement

As an L&S student, you must complete a minimum of 18 units of upper division courses in residence, *12 of which must be in your major program while you are declared in the major.

*Excluding Intercampus Visitor ProgramUC Education Abroad Program (UCEAP)UC Berkeley Washington Program (UCDC)UC ExtensionIncomplete, and Transfer units.

GPA Requirement

To be in good academic standing, students must maintain at least a C average (2.0 GPA) in all courses undertaken at UC, including those from UC Summer Sessions, UC Education Abroad Program, and UC Berkeley Washington Program (UCDC), as well as XB courses from University Extension; and a C average in all lower and upper division courses in the major.
For graduation, students must earn at least a C average (2.0 GPA) in all courses undertaken at UC (including those from UC Summer Sessions, UC Education Abroad Program, and UC Berkeley Washington Program, as well as XB courses from University Extension); and a C average in all upper division courses required for the major.