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Research Opportunities

What does undergraduate research mean to you?

UC Berkeley provides opportunities for research in all areas of study. Yes, even humanities like literature, music, history, language, politics, and law, in addition to STEM research areas like biological science or engineering. Berkeley’s size, resources, and capacity provide a scope of research opportunities that few schools can match.

Research projects allow Berkeley undergraduate students to get first-hand experience with how research discoveries and knowledge production are forged across the disciplines. They can be a great way to find a support system in a close-knit intellectual community outside the classroom. There are even projects directed by staff researchers and curators in museums and archives.

Three main libraries (Doe, Moffitt, and the Bancroft), 18 subject-specialty libraries, and 11 affiliated libraries (with special collections) make up the UC Berkeley Library system. UC Berkeley is home to the fourth largest library in the United States, Bancroft Library, which includes the Mark Twain Papers and Project, the Regional Oral History Office, the University of California Archives, the History of Science and Technology Program, and the Pictorial Collection. Berkeley’s research collection is ranked as one of the top public research university libraries in the country and has proven to be an invaluable resource to all students at Berkeley.

Our vital research community infuses the classroom, where new knowledge and breakthroughs enliven the learning process. In every department there are opportunities for student-initiated research. You also can advance your research skills by assisting on faculty-initiated research through the Undergraduate Research Apprentice Program. Beyond traditional research, our latest program, Berkeley Connect, pairs undergraduate students with graduate student mentors in a semester-long, 1-credit program that includes advising, small-group discussions, and special events/excursions.

Examples of Undergraduate Research Opportunities

  • Haas Scholars Program: 20 seniors from any department on campus engage in sustained research, field study or a creative project.
  • Berkeley Summer Bioengineering Program: 20-25 undergrads from any department work in the Bioengineering Lab at UCB or UCSF.
  • Townsend Center Research Apprenticeship: 12 students from the Humanities or Social Sciences work on faculty research projects.
  • College of Engineering: approximately 85 students with interest or background in engineering apprentice for Engineering faculty member.
  • Biology Scholars Program: promotes the success of students from economic, gender, ethnic and cultural groups historically underrepresented in the biological sciences.
  • UC Berkeley Washington Center: opportunities for students from any discipline to work in Berkeley or Washington D.C. on political campaigns and providing insight into national policy making.
  • Summer Research Opportunity Program: promotes access to graduate education among undergraduates who have been educationally or economically disadvantaged and who may not have had exposure to the academic environment of a major research university.

Learn more about research at Berkeley

Big Ideas Initiative

Undergraduate Research Apprentice Program

Berkeley Connect

Chronology of UC Berkeley Library and Its Collections

Berkeley Undergraduate Journal (research in the humanities and social sciences)

Berkeley Scientific Journal (research in the sciences)