University of California, Berkeley Advanced Placement (AP) Credits

Few universities can claim the honor of being named the top public university in the United States year after year, but the University of California, Berkeley holds that distinction for its continued contributions to academic and professional disciplines for nearly a century and a half. Research, arts, athletics, humanities—nearly every field has cultivated honorees of awards including Nobel Prizes, Academy Awards, Pulitzers, and over 100 Olympic Gold Medals. It is no wonder so many bright, accomplished, and ambitious students dream of attending the University of California, Berkeley. Likely, you are one of them.

Often referred to as UC Berkeley, Cal Berkeley, or just Berkeley, the school is the most sought after public university in the United States. With the lowest acceptance rate of all public universities, Berkeley has an extremely competitive application process. But don’t let that scare you off. With your University of California Advanced Placement (AP) credits, you will be well on your way to establishing yourself as a top candidate for admissions.

Benefits from your AP scores won’t end at the application process. Your AP scores can be used beyond your admissions packet; with a UC Berkeley AP score transfer, they can also be used to receive credit for college courses.

How do you apply to UC Berkeley with your AP scores? What options are available to you with Berkeley Advanced Standing? Within this article, you will find all of the information you need so that you know what to expect during the application and AP score transfer. Before we dive in to the nuts and bolts of the application and transfer process, let’s set the stage with a little history about UC Berkeley.

History Tidbits about the University of California, Berkeley

 Berkeley was founded in 1868 and is one of the affiliated universities in the University of California System.

UC Berkeley is situated on over 1,200 acres in Berkeley, CA.

Notable alumni include over 70 Nobel Prize recipients, 20 Academy Award Winners, and over 100 Olympic Gold Medal Athletes.

Cal Berkeley’s library system is the fourth largest academic library in the nation. The libraries alone cover over 12 acres.

Student Body and Admissions Facts

The University of California, Berkeley is a large university and has a total of 27.496 undergraduates, of which 5,550 are first-time, degree-seeking freshman. Graduate enrollment is 10,710.

Located just 10 miles from San Francisco, California’s Bay Area is at your fingertips making it easy to enjoy the culture and excitement of the city.

77,660 total applicants applied to the university in the fall of 2015 with only 11,891

(Data Courtesy of the CollegeBoard)

The data clearly reflects that UC Berkeley has the most competitive field of applicants of all U.S. public universities with a 15% admission rate. So how do you keep pace with such a competitive field? How can you prove that you have what it takes to succeed at Cal Berkeley?

Your Advanced Placement scores are your ticket to success! Let’s take some time now to cover the application process in more depth so that you can better understand how to apply your hard-earned AP scores to the admissions packet.

Applying to the University of California, Berkeley with Advanced Placement Scores

As per the university’s website, students must fulfill or exceed the minimum application requirements due to the highly competitive nature of the application process,

Minimum application requirements include:

 Subject Requirement – 15 required year-long courses between your freshman and senior years of high school. 7 course requirements must be taken in your last two years, and 11 must be taken prior to your senior year. It should be noted that admissions for 2015 had students completing 22-25 year-long courses.

ACT or SAT scores – For fall admission, these tests must be taken by December of your senior year, but preferably earlier.

SAT Subject Tests – Like your AP exams and courses, the SAT Subject Tests are another way to demonstrate your aptitude in a given subject.

GPA – A minimum GPA of 3.0 must be achieved for all course requirements taken in your junior and senior years, with no grade lower than a C. Additional grade points are awarded for honors-level courses.

High School Proficiency or GED – If you have not completed high school and have not received a diploma, you may apply with a Certificate of Proficiency through a State Board of Education. A General Education Development (GED) Certificate may also be used.

Also taken into consideration are your proven aptitudes in particular fields, such as arts, communications, athletics, foreign languages, and special interests.

A brief overview of application deadlines is as follows:

August 1 – Application opens for all applicants

November 1-30 – Filing period for admissions application

March 1-31 – Notification of admissions decision

July 1 – Official transcript submission deadline

July 15 – Official AP results deadline. Results must be postmarked on or before July 15.

Again, it cannot be overstated how important your Advanced Placement scores will be during your application process. By completing your AP exams and courses, you are well on your way to achieving your goal of UC Berkeley admission.

You have worked hard in high school to earn top-notch grades. You have applied to Berkeley and met all of the required deadlines. You have waited and waited for the letter, and you have been accepted. Congratulations! Now it is time to translate all that hard work into college credits at UC Berkeley.

Advanced Standing at the University of California, Berkeley

By transferring your AP credits to Cal Berkeley, you will open doors of opportunity that allow for amazing flexibility in your graduation plan. By unlocking these opportunities, you can begin to customize your plan in ways that fit your unique interests.

Early graduation is perhaps the most intriguing opportunity that arises from your AP score transfer. Since you are able to receive college credit for your AP scores, you will be able to jump ahead and take second-level courses in your first year. For example, if you transfer your AP History score to UC Berkeley, you can receive first-level History credit and begin taking second-level History in your first year. By taking this fast track to graduation, you would be able to meet your graduation requirements early, thereby allowing for early graduation.

As another opportunity, since you have more flexibility in your schedule, you can open up time slots to focus on your areas of interest. If you choose to take the normal amount of time to graduate, you can take other courses that challenge or engage you in ways that would be unavailable to you if you were not receiving your AP credits. In this way, you could graduate in the normal amount of time, but with a more focused and refined course load.

Clearly, the benefits of your AP transfer credits are far-reaching and diverse. But, which courses are available for credit and what scores will you need to achieve the transfer?

AP Credit Transfers

The University of Berkeley accepts a number of different scores that can be applied for credit by incoming students. You are likely using your AP scores for transfer, but the university accepts all of the following:

International Baccalaureate (IB) – Students must receive a 30 or above on their IB diploma. 30 credit units will be awarded toward an undergraduate degree.

A-Levels – Students must receive an A, B, or C on their General Certificate of Education (GCE) or Hong Kong Advanced Level (A-level) examinations.

So now that we have covered all of the major points in transferring your AP scores to UC Berkeley, let’s take a look at specific AP tests and their transfer credit equivalents.

Credit Reference

UC Berkeley awards credits for Advanced Placement scores of 3 or higher.

Credit is expressed in University of California Quarter Units. For Berkeley, divide units by 1.5 to convert to semester units.)


Advanced Placement Test

UC Berkeley Course

UC Berkeley Credits

Art Studio

2-D Design

3-D Design

Drawing

(8 maximum for all 3 exams)

8

8

8

Art History

Art History

8

Biology

Biology

8

Chemistry

Chemistry

8

Computer Science

Computer Science A

(4-unit maximum)

Computer Science Principles

2

 

8

Economics

Microeconomics

Macroeconomics

4

4

English

Language and Composition

Literature and Composition

(8-unit maximum for both exams)

8

8

Environmental Science

Environmental Science

4

Government and Politics

United States

Comparative

4

4

History

United States

European

World

8

8

8

Human Geography

Human Geography

4

Language other than English

Chinese Language and Culture

8

French Language and Culture

8

German Language and Culture

8

Italian Language and Culture

8

Latin

8

Japanese Language and Culture

8

Spanish Language and Culture

8

Spanish Literature and Culture

8

Mathematics

Calculus AB

Calculus BC

(8-unit maximum for both exams)

4

8

Music Theory

Music Theory

8

Physics

Physics B

8

Physics 1*

8

Physics 2*

8

Physics C Mechanics

4

Physics C Electricity and Magnetism

(8-unit maximum for all Physics exams)

4

Psychology

Psychology

4

Statistics

Statistics

4

*Physics B replaced by Physics 1 and 2

AB subscore on the Calculus BC examination:

Students who take the Calculus BC examination and earn a subscore of 3 or higher on the Calculus AB portion will receive credit for the Calculus AB examination, even if they do not receive a score of 3 or higher on the BC examination. (Note that the maximum credit awarded is 8 quarter units.)

Music Theory subscore:

Credit is only granted for the full Music Theory exam. Students who earn only a subscore will not receive exam credit.

(Information provided by UC Berkeley Admissions)

Let’s Review

Now that we have covered the full overview of the University of California, Berkeley Advanced Placement (AP) policy, let’s take this opportunity to review.

The University of California, Berkeley has the most competitive admissions process of all public universities in the United States.

A score of 3 or higher must be achieved on an AP exam to receive course credit.

You can use your AP credit transfers to adjust your graduation requirements so that you can either graduate early or develop a finer coursework focus and graduate on time.

Advanced Placement scores can be used to set you a part from the highly competitive field of applicants.

Good luck with your college application process. You have worked hard all throughout high school and the payoff is about to begin. You are capable of so much more than you imagine, so get to it. May your college career provide you with all the tools and experience necessary to make the most of your talents and abilities






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