Summer [IN]STITUTE in Environmental Design

FAQs

July 3 - August 11, 2017

Applying and Admissions

Who should apply?

[IN]CITY, [IN]LAND and [IN]ARCH are open to those with an undergraduate degree in any discipline. We will also consider exceptional students who will complete their senior year of college by June 2017. [IN]ARCH ADV is open to students who have already obtained an undergraduate degree in the field of architecture or who will complete their junior year in an architecture program by June 2017. In addition to exploring the methods and theories of architecture, landscape architecture, and city planning, Summer Institute students will also experience the culture of design and planning studios, connect with top faculty and practitioners, and build a portfolio for graduate school application. Students planning to apply for graduate school in these fields are strongly encouraged to apply.

How do I apply?

The online application launches in mid-December. Students must submit a brief statement of interest, a resume/CV, and an unofficial college transcript, along with an $80 application fee. See the How to Apply page for more details.

Am I required to submit a portfolio with my application?

Since the program does not require previous design experience, a portfolio is not required.

I am an international student. May I apply to the Summer Institute?
Yes! International students are welcome to apply to the Summer Institute. However, to be eligible for participation, you must be issued an F-1 or J-1 visa through the U.S. Department of State. You will be enrolled in five units of credit, which is the minimum amount required to be considered a full-time student and eligible for a visa. The visa application process is outlined on the UC Berkeley Summer Sessions website for international students. This process can be lengthy, and international students are encouraged to submit their applications as far in advance of the deadline as possible. The Berkeley International Office assists international students with the I-20 application process.
 
Am I eligible to apply for one of the Summer Institute programs while still completing my undergraduate degree?

The Summer Institute is geared towards post-baccalaureate students interested in pursuing a graduate degree in an environmental design discipline. While we will accept and consider current college students for the program, you are encouraged to consider the  Disc* (Design & Innovation for Sustainable Cities) summer program. This program has been designed specifically for current college students and may be a better fit. Ultimately, it is up to you to decide which program is right for you and your academic and professional goals.

Am I eligible to apply for one of the Summer Institute programs with an undergraduate degree in that same field?

The Summer Institute is structured as a broad introduction to architecture, city planning and landscape architecture, and would be largely redundant for those with an undergraduate degree in the same field. The Summer Institute offers an advanced studio,  [IN]ARCH ADV, for students with an undergraduate degree in architecture who are looking to refine and build upon their skill set as well as update their portfolio. At this time we are not offering advanced studios in landscape architecture or city and regional planning.

I am not eligible for the Summer Institute. Are there any other design courses offered during the summer?

Yes! The College of Environmental Design offers two additional summer programs - one for high school students (embARC) and one for current college students (Disc* [Design & Innovation for Sustainable Cities]). We also offer MAKERWORKSHOPS that are open to the public through the Cal Design Lab and the Fabrication Shop.

Program Cost

What is the total cost of the program, including UC Berkeley Summer Sessions fees?

Tuition and fees for the 2017 Summer Institute are as follows:

  • $4,140 for current UC undergraduate students
  • $4,242 for current UC graduate students
  • $4,355 for visiting domestic students
  • $6,735 for visiting international students

Fees for the 2018 Summer Institute will be announced in early 2018. For more information on total costs, please visit the Program Cost page.

What is the refund policy?

CED reserves the right to cancel any course for which there is insufficient enrollment; students already enrolled will receive a full refund.  For student-initiated cancellations, the deadlines are as follows:

  • Friday June 2: Contact the Summer Programs Office (summer-institutes@berkeley.edu) to cancel your enrollment by this date and you will receive a full refund of the $3,400 program fee and all Summer Sessions fees, minus a $100 cancellation fee. (For international students, the $300 I-20 Processing Fee is non-refundable.)
  • Friday June 30: Contact the Summer Programs Office to cancel your enrollment by this date and you will receive a refund of all Summer Sessions fees, minus a $100 cancellation fee. (For international students, the $300 I-20 Processing Fee is non-refundable.)
  • Friday July 7: Contact the Summer Programs Office to withdraw from the program by this date and you will receive a refund of the Course Fee (approximately $450 for domestic students), minus a Withdrawal Processing Fee (approximately $335 for domestic students).

Scholarship and Financial Aid

Are scholarships or Financial Aid available?

Small stipends are available for domestic and international students and will be awarded based on an assessment of the applicant’s merit and financial need. Applicants who wish to be considered for a scholarship must send a request to the Summer Programs Office (summer-institutes@berkeley.edu) and submit their application before April 1, 2017. Information on the scholarship application process will be included with an offer of admission. 

Housing

How do I find housing in Berkeley?

In consideration of the significant time commitment required by the program, Summer Institute participants are strongly encouraged to live on or close to campus. You have several options for housing, some of which include meals. The following links will give you an idea of housing costs in the Berkeley area.

  • We highly recommend UC Berkeley Student Co-Op Housing, and Cloyne Court in particular. 
  • Many summer students find sublets in the neighborhood using online listings such as Craigslist. Keep in mind that many more options become available during the summertime.
  • Another option would be to take a room at the International House, which is a five-minute walk from the College of Environmental Design and offers meals.
  • UC Berkeley residence halls also become available to visiting students during the summer sessions. 
  • Cal Rentals is a subscription service is set up specifically to help summer student visitors find sublets around campus. You can also email them after March 1 to request their Summer Housing Bulletin.
  • HousingAnywhere.com is a platform originally created for international exchange and internship students that has been highly effective for Summer Institute participants in the past.
  • The CED Summer Programs Facebook Page is used by incoming Institute students to trade house-hunting tips and share leads. Once you have enrolled you will be invited to this group.

Studio

What equipment and/or materials will I need to bring?

It is recommended that all students have a laptop or access to a desktop computer. Upon completion of enrollment, software will become available to students for download. Students will also have access to to computers, printers and any required graphic or technical software in CED computing labs. Additionally, some drawing materials will be supplied to participants. Other supplies are available for purchase at the CED Materials Store adjacent to the Fabrication Shop, The Ink Stone in Berkeley, and elsewhere near campus. See the Facilities + Resources page for details on sourcing materials, lab access and supplies that will be provided.

Academic Credit

How does the Summer Institute feed into the master's programs at the College of Environmental Design?

The Summer Institute is not part of the master's programs at CED. Students who wish to apply for admission into the master's programs offered at CED must submit their applications with the general applicant pool. Please see the departmental websites for more information about admission to the master's programs in architecture, city and regional planning, and landscape architecture and environmental planning.

Can credit from the Summer Institute later be applied toward a master's degree?

No. Completion of the Summer Institute does not offer credit toward a master's degree in architecture, city and regional planning, or landscape architecture and environmental planning.

Can credit from the Summer Institute later be transferred to another university?

Potentially. ENV DES 2 is the course that Summer Institute students enroll in for a pass/no pass grade in and it bears 1 unit of credit for domestic students and 5 units of credit for international students. Some institutions may count this credit towards the total number of units required for a degree; this can usually be confirmed by an admissions counselor or degree adviser.