Graduating Seniors

Graduating Seniors

CalCentral will show your expected graduation term.

Before the start of your final academic year, you should check your Academic Progress Report (APR) on the CalCentral dashboard. The APR will disclose whether or not you have satisfied the University and L&S graduation requirements. If you have questions on your University or L&S requirements, please contact L&S Advising. Please also review the Physics major requirements to make sure that all major requirements will be completed by graduation. If you have questions on Physics requirements, please contact your Physics Major Advisor (Anna Hilke or Kathleen Cooney).

Graduation Ceremony

The Physics Department holds a Commencement Ceremony once annually, shortly after Spring final examinations (mid May). Graduating seniors will receive an invitation to participate in the ceremony by early March. Students who graduated in the preceding summer and fall are welcome to join in the celebrations during the spring. Those graduating in the coming summer and fall are also welcome to join and celebrate early. Contact your Physics Major Advisor if you have questions.

Graduation Checklist

Please visit the L&S "Preparing for Graduation" page to ensure you have met graduation requirements and deadlines.

Life After Physics

Whether considering graduate school or a job in industry, we recommend taking full advantage of the resources Berkeley has to offer to help you navigate post-Cal life. The Physics Department offers a number of workshops, panels, and sessions throughout the year on both graduate school and careers. We recommend attending these sessions and reaching out to your Physics Major Advisor if you have questions or would like to explore ideas for your path after graduation.

Graduate School

Physics Graduate Admissions committees tend to consider the following criteria when considering admission to PhD programs: research experience, letters of recommendation (3), and grades in upper division physics courses, and written essays. GRE and Physics GRE requirements are in flux at many universities so it's best to check in with individual schools about their requirements. Application materials are typically due in December.


It can be helpful to check in with yourself, during your junior and senior years especially, to identify your interests, desires, and goals post-Cal. Physics Student Services has compiled a list of questions to consider and resources to explore as you think about your career. If you would like a sounding board as you explore these tips and questions, you can schedule an appointment with a Career Center advisor or with your Physics Major Advisor.

Graduate Records Examination (GRE)

If you decide to take the GRE the October test date is optimal for admission and fellowship reviews. Test dates later than December will delay your application from admissions review and preclude it from fellowship review. Consult your regional Educational Testing Services Office for test dates.