Incoming Transfer Students

Congratulations on your Admission to UC Berkeley!

This page will explain important guidelines to prepare the Berkeley Economics major as a new transfer student. It is important to know that you are not officially admitted to the Economics major yet; all new transfer students must apply to the major during their first semester on the Berkeley campus. This means completing all prerequisite courses (or their equivalent) and enrolling in any remaining courses immediately during the first semester at Berkeley. 

We strongly encourage all new students to attend Golden Bear Orientation (GBO).

Applying to the Economics Major as a Transfer Student

All new transfer students are required to apply to the Economics Major during their first semester. Fill out the online application before or by the end of the fifth week of class. Transfer students will be denied from the economics major if they apply after completing their first semester at Berkeley. 


There are five prerequisite courses for the Economics Major. All five classes (or their equivalent) must be completed prior to acceptance to the major and all must be taken for a letter grade. If you are transferring from a California community college, check your courses on to ensure that they are equivalent to the Berkeley courses. 

Introduction to Economics: ONE course or equivalent required. 

  • ECON 1 or 2. ​At Berkeley, these courses include both micro and macro economics in one course.

*Calculus: You must take both A and B of either sequence. TWO courses or equivalent required.

  • MATH 1A or 16A (or equivalent) and
  • MATH 1B or 16B (or equivalent)

*Introduction to Statistics: ONE course or equivalent required. 

  • STAT 20 or 21 or W21
  • STAT/COMPSCI/INFO C8 and STAT 88 (6 units total, must complete both)
  • Upper-division statistics courses such as: STAT 131A, 134, or INDENG 172 are also acceptable

* At least one math or stat prerequisite course must be taken at UC Berkeley. For most transfer students, this is typically the statistics course.

**Intermediate Economic Theory: ONE course required to apply for the major.

  • ECON 100A or 101A: Microeconomics 
  • ECON 100B or 101B: Macroeconomics or UGBA 101B

** The prerequisite intermediate theory course must be taken at UC Berkeley. UGBA 101A cannot be used as a prerequisite for the major. No exceptions.


  1. Apply to the major in their first semester.
  2. Have an average GPA of 3.0 in the prerequisite transfer courses, and an average GPA of 2.7 in prerequisite courses taken at Berkeley. 


Please view our Sample Transfer Student Plan for details on your first semester schedule and information on how to plan for your next four semesters at Berkeley. 


Students with Transfer Credit From 4-year or Out-of-State Institutions

Students transferring economics prerequisite credit from another UC campus, other 4-year, or out-of-state institution must speak with an economics advisor to determine acceptable alternative prerequsite coursework.  An upper division Economics course and one of our quantitative prerequisites must be taken in the first semester. Students should follow petition procedures below. Contact an economics advisor at if you have any questions. 

  • ALL Economics transfer courses must always be formally petitioned online through the COURSE EQUIVALENCY REQUEST FORM. A maximum of TWO approved, upper-division courses can be transferred from another institution or taken outside of the economics department to fulfill graduation requirements for the major. 
  • Math 1A/16A and 1B/16B transfer credit must be evaluated by the MATH DEPARTMENT. Instructions for course evaluation can be found under "Course Equivalency" here:
  • Statistics 20 transfer credit (or higher) must be evaluated by the STATISTICS DEPARTMENT. Complete a Statistics request form and submit it to their department in 367 Evans for reivew

What courses should I take my first semester at Berkeley?

Enroll in any remaining prerequisite courses you did not fulfill with transfer credit.  Remember, you need at least a total of 13 units to be considered full-time in L&S. We recommend a balanced course load of 13-16 units in your first semester to help with your transition to Berkeley. For most transfer students, your first semester schedule might look similar to this:

  • Statistics 20 or 21/W21 -- 4 units
  • Economics 100A or 100B -- 4 units
  • A third (or fourth class) could be taken to fulfill other graduation requirements such as: American Cultures, American History and Institutions, or any remaining L&S Breadth requirements. You could also look into taking courses for interest like DeCal or seminar courses. Since economics is a capped major and admission is not guaranteed, we also strongly encourage you to look into pre-requisite courses you can take in your first semester for an alternative "uncapped" major. You can work with advisors in the College of Letters and Science to help you search for an alternate major. 

***This schedule assumes that the equivalent of a year of calculus and Econ 1 were completed prior to the student's first semester at Berkeley. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact an advisor at