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Declaring the BASW Major

How and When to Declare the Social Welfare Major

Social Welfare is a high-demand major, which means there are specific eligibility requirements that must be met without exception in order to declare the Social Welfare major. Students must meet the following requirements to be considered:

  • Have completed all prerequisite entry requirements (see below) with a letter grade of C or better.
  • Have a minimum GPA of 2.0.
  • Have accrued less than 80 cumulative units, including work in-progress.

Prerequisite Entry Requirements

ALL of the following prerequisites must be completed BEFORE you can petition to declare Social Welfare as your major:

1. Satisfy the L&S Reading and Composition (R&C) Requirement:
The College of Letters and Science requires two semesters of lower division work in composition - Reading and Composition (R&C), parts A and B, in sequential order. All undergraduates must complete the R&C requirement by the end of their fourth semester. For more information on courses that satisfy the R&C requirement, please visit "How to Satisfy Reading and Composition."

2. Satisfy the L&S Quantitative Reasoning (QR) Requirement:
The Quantitative Reasoning requirement is designed to ensure that students graduate with basic understanding and competency in math, statistics, or computer science. The requirement may be satisfied by exam or by taking an approved course in math, statistics and computer science, or the Foundations of Data Science (Data 8) course. Course work used to satisfy Quantitative Reasoning must be completed with a letter grade of C- or better. For more information on courses that satisfy the Quantitative Reasoning requirement, please visit "How to Satisfy Quantitative Reasoning."

3. Introductory Psychology:
Psychology 1 or 2, or equivalent

4. Introductory Sociology:
Sociology 1 or 3AC, or equivalent

Prerequisite courses can be taken at UC Berkeley or at another university or at a community college. For courses taken at another institution, the course title must indicate Introductory, Beginning, Elementary etc., and a transcript (unofficial is acceptable) must be presented at the time of declaring for grade verification. High school AP scores that are high enough to provide university units can be accepted in place of a prerequisite class. 

GPA Guideline

All prerequisite courses must be successfully completed with a minimum letter grade of C.

Transfer Students

For transfer students, eligibility to declare a major begins and ends in the first semester at UC Berkeley, and all transfer students must declare in their first semester. For this reason transfer students wishing to declare the Social Welfare major should complete all prerequisites by the time they arrive at Berkeley in order to be eligible to declare the major and begin required courses for the major in the first Fall term on campus.

How to Declare the Major

Students are eligible to submit the Petition to Declare e-Form once they have satisfied all of the prerequisite entry requirements and received a letter grade for each course. Petitions must include unofficial transcripts and a 4-year program plan indicating how the applicant intends to complete the major requirements by their expected graduation date. For assistance with program planning, please make plans to meet with a major advisor or attend an information session. Incomplete applications will not be considered. 

Social Welfare is a "high-demand" major which means that there are specific eligibility requirements that must be met without exception. Students must meet the following requirements to be considered:

  • Have completed all prerequisites with a C or better
  • Have a minimum GPA of 2.0
  • Have accrued less than 80 cumulative units (this includes units in progress)

Petitions are reviewed during the first three weeks of the Fall and Spring semesters. The priority deadline for submitting the Petition to Declare e-form and supporting documentation is the close of business on the Friday of the 3rd week of classes each semester. Given the high demand for the major, it is highly recommended that students submit their e-Form as soon as they are eligible to do so (meaning that grades have been posted for all prerequisite requirements). Students will be notified of their petition status as quickly as possible. Petitions are reviewed on a first-come, first-serve basis taking into consideration the applicant's proximity to graduation and the ability to complete major requirements by their expected graduation date. Once a student has been declared in the major, they are elgible to begin taking core courses the following semester. 

To Petition to Declare the Social Welfare Major:

  • Complete Petition to Declare e-Form Here
  • Complete the Petition to Declare e-Form entirely, and attach transcript documents (unofficial copies are acceptable) and a four-year Program Planning Worksheet.

BASW Major Overview | BASW Degree Requirements | Undergraduate Advising