Financial Assistance


Fall 2016 applicants, if you are applying for both the fellowship competition and admission, the completed application for admission and fellowship with all supporting documents must be filed by DECEMBER 7, 2015.

We encourage applicants to apply for fellowships from sources other than UC Berkeley. U.S. citizens and permanent residents are particularly encouraged to apply for the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Defense Science and Engineering (NDSEG) fellowships. Information and forms can also be found at university career offices. In addition, some corporations award fellowships to their employees. Many governments also award fellowships for overseas study.

In addition, U.S. citizens are encouraged to apply for the many external fellowships for which they are eligible:

National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship Program

National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowships

Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellowships

U.S. Department of Homeland Security Graduate Fellowships

Fannie and John Hertz Foundation Fellowships

Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC) Graduate Fellowship Program

Science, Mathematics And Research for Transformation (SMART) Scholarship

AT&T Labs Fellowship Program

For Women and Minorities:
National Physical Science Consortium Fellowships

For Women:
American Association of University Women (AAUW) Educational Foundation

For Minorities:
GEM Fellowship Program

Ford Predoctoral Fellowships for Minorities

For Canadians:
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC)
Postgraduate Scholarships (PGS)

Outstanding international applicants will be considered for the prestigious Berkeley Fellowship and for International House Fellowships.

Financial Assistance

M.Eng Students

The department does not provide support to terminal M.Eng. students, but there is financial support through the M.Eng. program.

M.S./Ph.D. and Ph.D. Students

As is common in engineering and science graduate programs in the United States, the vast majority of our graduate students working (ultimately) towards their Ph.D. will have their tuition, campus fees, insurance, and stipend covered for them. This support can come in multiple forms:

  • Graduate Student Researcher (GSR) – Applicants and admitted students are encouraged to contact faculty in your areas of research interest to discuss the possibility of joining their groups as a GSR. GSRs are paid from research grants of the faculty and enable the graduate student to do research throughout the year. Note that not all faculty will be taking students each year. Faculty members may offer you a position in their group at the time you are admitted, after you have been admitted, or upon your arrival at campus at the start of your graduate career. As of the Fall 2016 semester, the following payscale will be in place for GSRs:
    • Pre-Qualifying Exam Students – Step V GSR – $30,915/year (Projected 2016 Levels*)
    • Post-Qualifying Exam Students – Step VI GSR – $32,349/year (Projected 2016 Levels*)
  • Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) – At least once semester during your career, you will serve as a GSI to enhance your educational process. Openings for positions as GSIs are announced each semester and appointments are offered by the individual faculty instructors after reviewing the applicants. During this semester the department will support your tuition, fees, insurance, and stipend as you support the educational process. Students who do not speak English as a native language and do not hold a bachelor’s degree from an institution in the United States must demonstrate oral English proficiency to be appointed as a GSI. In those countries where the TOEFL Internet-based Test (TOEFL iBT) is administered, English language proficiency is determined by the speaking section score of the TOEFL iBT. If the TOEFL iBT is not available, students can demonstrate their proficiency by taking and passing the SPEAK test offered on the Berkeley campus. Please visit the GSI Teaching & Resource Center for more detailed information about the language proficiency test.
  • Campus Fellowships – UC Berkeley offers a number of campus-wide merritt fellowships including the Chancellor’s and Berkeley Fellowships. These awards are made to the individual graduate student to aid them in their education process.
  • Outside FellowshipsDomestic applicants are highly encouraged to apply for any number of graduate fellowships. For a complete listing see our Financial Assistance page. International applicants are also highly encouraged to see financial support from funding agencies in your home country. Although not a requirement for admission, being awarded one of these external fellowships can greatly expand your graduate career, open up new possibilities for research programs, provide additional financial benefits,

*These are projected values, current GSR rates can be found on the Graduate Division’s website.