Study Abroad

The Psychology department encourages its students to add an international dimension to their education by participating in Berkeley Study Abroad (BSA). Study abroad will challenge your views on the world and change your life! Exposure to various cultures and diverse human experience prepare students for the complex challenges faced by professionals in the field of Psychology. With proper academic planning, students can have the experience of a lifetime with little impact on programmactic time to degree.


Why Study Abroad?


Psychology aims to describe, understand, and predict the behavior of living organisms. In doing so, psychology embraces the many factors that influence behavior. This approach is highly conducive to the study abroad experience, as it helps students develop an understanding of how environmental and cultural factors shape human behavior. Further benefits include:

-Unique academic and experiential opportunities in Psychology

-Participation in a different education system and a new cultural perspective

-The study of fascinating topics not readily available on the Berkeley campus

-An expanded world view enhanced by first-hand experience of another culture

-Enhanced resume and/or application for graduate school

-Development of self-confidence and independence

-Preparation for a career in an internationally competitive world


When Can I Study Abroad?


While it is possible for psychology students to go abroad at almost any point in their academic careers, the particular term and length of time that you choose to study abroad depends on the requirements you have left to complete the major.

Applications are typically due 6 months to a year prior to the program start date and some programs have academic or linguistic prerequisites that must be satisfied in advance. Please check the BSA website for guidance on how to apply:


Where Can I Study Abroad?


Psychology students planning to complete a portion of their major abroad have a wide variety of options. You will find that a large majority of the programs will work, especially if you’re looking to fulfill your psychology elective requirements. Courses taken abroad need to meet the following criteria:

            -At least 2.7 semester units

            -Upper Division

            -Within the university's Psychology department


*Study Abroad courses will most likely be equivalent to psychology elective courses.

*Syllabi must be reviewed in order for courses to be considered for UCB Tier 2 courses.

*No more than 2 courses can be used to satisfy the upper division major requirements

*Psych 10/101 must be completed during your sophomore or junior year at UCB

*You may fulfill your breadth requirements while abroad. Consult an L&S adviser.


Have a Course in Mind? Will it Count Towards the Major?


Click on the list of pre-approved Study Abroad Courses, on the right, to view courses abroad that may be counted towards your Psychology degree. If you would like to take a particular psychology course abroad not currently on the list, make sure it counts towards the major requirements, by submiting a Syllabus Review Form to the Student Services Office. The Curriculum Committee will review the syllabus and determine equivalency.


What Happens When I Return?


Psychology students should meet with a Psychology adviser once they are back on campus if requesting course credit for the major

-Stay in touch via email with your Psychology adviser - especially during the enrollment period.

-Submit the Exception to the Major Petition form (FORM) along with the syllabi and reading lists, or exams. These course materials will be used to evaluate petitions for major requirement substitutions

Final approval granted only when grades and units are posted to UC Berkeley transcript (check CalCentral), and completed paperwork has been submitted