Fall 2021 FAQs


What is the current plan for Fall 2021?

Please read Chancellor Carol Christ’s message to campus about Fall 2021 instruction. 


Will there be in-person classes?

The first week of fall instruction will be entirely remote; afterward, the default instructional mode for fall 2021 will be in-person. The anticipated exceptions are class sections with enrollments of 200 or more; UC Berkeley Senate-approved online courses; and a small number of classes in which instructors have requested and received approval to teach remotely exclusively. However, based on local public health conditions, some courses may need to return to reduced in-person capacity after the start of the fall semester. A plan is being developed to allow instructors to transition swiftly from in-person to online instruction if necessary.


Will classes still be held remotely?

Courses coded as “in-person” will meet primarily in person, and physical attendance on campus is expected. Departments will decide what other courses are acceptable alternatives. For example, the remote option may be a different class that is being taught remotely and meets the same major requirement.


What do you mean by mode of instruction?

Mode of instruction is how a class component—lecture, discussion, lab, etc—is delivered in a given semester. If you are trying to determine if the class you are enrolling in will be in-person or remote, use the “mode of instruction” filter in the Academic Guide’s Class Schedule or the Cal Central Schedule of Classes. The mode of instruction is noted on the class details page of each section. Please note: mode of instruction may vary within a course (for example, the lecture and related discussion section or lab may have different modes of instruction).


I’m an international student. Can I still take my classes remotely?

We know that some international students may not be able to attend in-person classes in the fall because of their inability to obtain a visa and/or enter the United States. While we are advocating for the removal of government restrictions that apply to international students, you may, in the interim, still enroll in fall courses from abroad. The majority of classes will be offered in-person, but classes of 200 or more will be remote. Some courses will also be provided asynchronously, but in-person classes that are offered asynchronously may still require in-person attendance at the final exam. International students are encouraged to consult with their department and college as well as the Berkeley International Office to evaluate their options if they are unable to come to the United States due to travel restrictions. International students should view the latest COVID-19 updates from the Berkeley International Office (BIO) and contact BIO for additional information.


Will clubs and student organizations be able to meet in person?

Classroom and one-time event reservations are not being accepted at this time, and a decision has not been made yet about Fall 2021. Student organizations are not currently permitted to gather in person on or off-campus. Student organizations should contact the LEAD Center for resources on how to build community virtually.

Will I be able to live on campus? What will campus housing occupancy look like?

There will be housing options available for eligible students who apply to live in campus housing. First, refer to our Cal Housing website for the latest details. 

At this time, occupancy levels in campus housing for 2021-22 have not yet been determined. The number of spaces available will depend on public health guidance from UC, state, county and local public health officials. However, with COVID-19 vaccination now beginning across the country, we are optimistic conditions will improve by the fall semester.


Will I need to be vaccinated for COVID-19?

[updated May 5, 2021] The University of California is developing policies for UC campuses, and currently is encouraging vaccines for university communities while it reviews policy requirements. It expects a final policy will be ready by the start of the Fall 2021 term. Please continue to follow your Berkeley email messages, as they will contain important future updates on this matter.

Currently, you can see a student FAQ with more details on the University of California's proposed vaccine policy. In short, pending full approval of a COVID-19 vaccine by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and reasonable access to vaccine doses, the requirement to receive a COVID-19 vaccination would take effect for students who may access UC facilities or programs in person starting in the fall of 2021.


I’m fully vaccinated. What am I able to do?

If you are fully vaccinated, please upload your vaccine records in eTang. Also, take a moment to review University Health Services’ guidance on what has changed and what hasn’t now that you are fully vaccinated. (In summary: it doesn’t yet mean a return to pre-pandemic ways.)


Can I host an event on campus?

You need to submit a pre-approval request if you would like to host a campus event. Limited participatory activities are being allowed now in specific spaces for campus departments and/or Registered Student Organizations. For the latest information on this process, please consult the campus coronavirus website.


Can I workout at the Recreational Sports Facility (RSF)?

You need to make a reservation if you want to visit the RSF, which is open for limited in-person operations. Learn about how to make reservations and the rules/regulations here


I am an international student. Where can I find more information?

You can refer to the Berkeley International Office's archive of messages for international students