The Berkeley Physics International Exchange (BPIE) Program
The Berkeley Physics International Exchange (BPIE) Program partners with universities around the world to provide undergraduate international students an opportunity to study abroad at UC Berkeley for one semester or one year.
Through our University partnerships, selected students have the incredible opportunity to engage in academic and research settings to enhance their educational experience.
BPIE offers unique and exclusive opportunities for physics students:
- Study physics with some of the world’s brightest students and most distinguished faculty
- Course offerings include quantum mechanics, atomic physics, solid state physics, biophysics, string theory, cosmology, thermal and statistical physics, data science and more at the #1 public university in the US
- Complete UC Berkeley courses that will count toward credit at student’s home universities
- Major Program designated advising with professional advisors in the UC Berkeley Physics Department
- Exclusive faculty-BPIE student lunches which allow visiting students an opportunity to meet and hear from our faculty about their academic experience and research while enjoying lunch in a small and informal setting
- Learn about research at our Annual Undergraduate and Graduate Poster Sessions (spring semesters)
- Access to incredible campus libraries
- Workshops on Applying to Graduate School as International Students
- Career Exploration Panels
- Participate in research lab tours
- Access to the Recreational Sports Facility (RSF)
- Campus and Department tours
- Tours to the Lawrence Hall of Science
- Scenic tours to the Pacific coastline
- Field trips to near-by cities including San Francisco, Napa, Half Moon Bay, Monterey
- Hiking trips near campus
- Movie outings
- Access to over 100 student groups on campus
- Unique opportunity to have the UC Berkeley student experience!
Our current partnerships include ShanghaiTech University, University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Xi'an Jiaotong University. We are looking forward to launching additional partnerships with universities around the world.
Program cost is $19,900 for one semester; $39,800 for a full year
Expected course workload
12 UC Berkeley semester units in one term in the Physics Department. This number of units is also needed for visa requirements.
Here's what BPIE students have to say
“Berkeley is an amazing place where I can get the chance to step out of my comfort zone while feeling like I'm home at the same time.” ~Junrong Li
“I believe this year is the one I learned the most at the university level. The courses at Berkeley are pretty great. What's more, the lectures are also interesting.” ~Zhengqing Pan
“UC Berkeley is an open university. I’ve learned to respect others from different parts of the world, and be proud of my own culture at the same time.” ~Xueqing Tong
For additional program information and requirements, please contact:
"Physics is an international enterprise built on partnerships among nations and their citizens. Particle physicists from around the globe come to CERN in Geneva to investigate the high-energy frontier. Japan has led the world in the construction of massive neutrino detectors while China created an underground laboratory of unprecedented depth. The radiation left over from the Big Bang is detected by telescopes mounted in the Chilean desert. International students bring to my classroom the face and flavor of modern physics research - the diversity and collective talent we need to move the field forward." - Professor Wick Haxton, Physics Department Chair
Additional partner programs with the UC Berkeley Physics Department
Participation in these programs is limited to enrollment in physics courses (pending availability). Space may be limited. They do not include any of the exclusive BPIE Program features.
Berkeley International Study Program (BISP)
Berkeley Global Access (BGA)