Berkeley Changemaker Gateway Course

Our gateway course features 26 distinguished UC Berkeley Faculty members from 23 departments and 9 schools & colleges, including:

As someone who has grown up feeling like the ‘other’ it was so empowering hear that there is space for all people to make the meaningful changes they want to see...I'm so grateful to be a part of this program and to have the opportunity to gain the skills necessary for creating the change that I'd like to see!
Gateway Course Student

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I enroll in the gateway course: The Berkeley Changemaker?

Please check the Class Schedule in the Academic Guide for the suite of Berkeley Changemaker courses now open for enrollment. Berkeley Changemaker is now a "course type" in the Academic Guide.

How do learn more about the gateway course?

This page is a great place to start. Be sure to watch the videos and review the draft syllabus posted on this page. Should you still have questions, we are here for you. Please write to us:

I'm outside of the United States or have a challenging schedule, can I still take this class?

Yes. The 2-unit course is asynchronous and fully-online, meaning that you can watch the lectures and complete your assignments on your own time and on the schedule that works best for you each week.  We also have many "live" components available to you throughout the course, including office hours with our all-star UC Berkeley faculty and Zoom sessions that offer you an opportunity to engage even more deeply with the critical thinking, communication, and collaboration skills taught in our course. In consideration of our students' varying schedules, we try our best to offer these at different times throughout the week.

What's the workload like? How many hours a week should I expect with this course?

Please see the course syllabus on this page for more information. Our students report that the workload is commesurate with other 2-unit courses at UC Berkeley. We designed the course to comply with the guidelines set forth by the Academic Senate's Committee on Curriculum & Instruction, so you can expect to spend roughly 90 hours on our course. This includes watching the lectures and Berkeley Changemaker Chats, doing the readings, engaging with your classmates, and completing your assignments.

I'm a junior/senior, is this course for me?

Yes! Third year students and above should enroll in the upper-division versions of this course Letters & Sciences (L&S C196C) or Business Administration (UGBA C196C) credit. As an upper-division student, you'll be grouped in a small "section" with other juniors and seniors. Kindly note that lower-division students should enroll in the lower-division section (L&S C12 or UGBA C12). No student should enroll in more than one section of this course.

Is the gateway course open to the general public?

Yes. For the first time ever, pre-college and non-matriculated students are invited to enroll in our gateway course. Adult learners may also be interested in our new Executive Education course this December.

I still have questions.

We'd love to hear from you, please e-mail us at:

I am very grateful that this course was open to any grade even though the small description of this course seemed to be geared towards freshmen, and I was glad that I disregarded the description and joined this class. You will definitely learn something in this course where you can apply it to your life no matter what path you take...
YeRin Jun '21, Gateway Course Student & Berkeley Changemaker
I'm thankful that I've been able to learn so much from this course! I truly believe this is the greatest preparation I could have received going into my first year at Berkeley. I'm sad this has come to an end, but excited to apply the lessons and principles I learned into my Berkeley journey and my life!
Grace Kelly, Gateway Course Student, Class of 2024

The 23 UC Berkeley Academic Departments represented in our gateway course include:

African American Studies, Agricultural & Resource Economics, Art Practice, Bioengineering, Comparative Literature, Demography, Electrical Engineering & Computer Sciences, Energy Resources Group, English, Economics, Education, Environmental Science, Policy & Management, Industrial Engineering and Operations Research, International & Area Studies, Mechanical Engineering, Molecular and Cell Biology, Physics, Political Science, Rhetoric, Social Welfare, Spanish, and Theater, Dance, & Performance Studies

Play video
Curious to have a "sneak peek" into the course? Watch the first course module, taught by Alex Budak.
I'm really excited by Berkeley's focus on inclusive leading as a public institution- in my eyes, one of the most important foundational steps to becoming a changemaker is exposing yourself to a multitude of perspectives and backgrounds, which is achieved not only by interacting with the incredible academic opportunities offered by Berkeley faculty and courses, but also by introducing yourself to the cultural experiences offered by the numerous student groups and interactions with those from backgrounds other than your own.
Gateway Course Student, Class of 2024

The 8 UC Berkeley Schools and Colleges represented in our gateway course include:

School of Education, School of Engineering, Haas School of Business, College of Letters & Sciences, School of Public Health, School of Social Welfare and the Rausser College of Natural Resources

Play video
A highlight of our gateway course are the Berkeley Changemaker Chats. Click here for a snippet with Bob Jacobsen, the former Dean of Undergraduate Education.

Since our launch in July 2020, Berkeley Changemaker classes have enrolled over 22% of lower-division undergraduates!

...I love the fact that changemakers do not need to be bounded by the area of their interest, be it public health, food activism, electronics, writing. All of us in our own respect and interest can make a difference, especially with these lectures to guide us!
Gateway Course Student, Class of 2024
Play video
The Berkeley Changemaker Summer 2021 Promotional Video
BERKELEY CHANGEMAKER is a registered trademark of The Regents of the University of California through its Berkeley campus.  It is not affiliated with any third parties using “changemaker” or similar terms.