Earth and Planetary Science
EPS Atmosphere, Oceans, and Climate

Declaring a Major/Minor

The Department of Earth and Planetary Science offers six undergraduate majors:

Atmospheric ScienceGeophysicsEnvironmental Earth Science
Marine ScienceGeologyPlanetary Science

 Click here to view a side-by-side presentation of all 6 majors and their corresponding courses.

We strongly encourage students to be in touch with the undergraduate advisor as early as possible. Students do not need to complete all of the required lower division major requirements to declare the major (with the exception of the Atmospheric Science major which requires Math 53 and Math 54 before declaring). However, we strongly encourage students to take EPS 50 The Planet Earth before declaring an EPS major. Declared students have access to the Ramsden Study Room in McCone Hall and can apply for the Ramsden Scholarship Fund. Course equivalencies for AP/IB exams and A-Levels can be found here.

How to Declare an EPS Major:

1) Optional but encouraged: Meet with the undergraduate advisor to talk about the EPS Department, major, and the major declaration process. An advising appointment is encouraged for students who want assistance with a 2-4 Year Program Plan and Juniors/Seniors completing a Change of College Application and students completing a Simultaneous Degree Application Packet.

2) Meet with the faculty advisor (visit the major website for faculty advisor information) to sign the Major Declaration Form.

  • Double Major Applications should have the faculty advisor sign the Major Declaration Form and the undergraduate advisor sign the Double Major Form for overlapping classes and the Program Plan. If the EPS major is your 2nd major, please make sure your 1st major advisor completes the form before submitting it to EPS. 
  • Simultaneous Degree Application Packets should have the faculty advisor sign the Degree Requirements and the undergraduate advisor sign the Graduation Plan.
  • Change of College Applications for Juniors/Seniors over 60 units should meet with the undergraduate advisor first. The faculty advisor will sign the Major Declaration Form and the undergraduate advisor will sign the Program Plan

3) Return the signed Major Declaration Form to epsua@berkeley.edu where the undergraduate advisor will process your major declaration. For Change of College, please follow the directions on the packet and send forms to L&S.

For students who need to complete Conditions to Declare for an undeclared senior hold, please meet with the undergraduate advisor.

Grades and GPA Requirements for the Major:

The department will allow one D grade in a lower division course and/or upper division course as long as you maintain at least a C average (2.0 GPA) for your lower division major GPA and upper division major GPA.

Earth and Planetary Science Majors: Course Offerings Schedule:

You can see when EPS major courses are planning to be offered here. Additional information for course offerings can be found on the Berkeley Academic Guide course schedule.

Spring 2022 EPS Enrollment Information and FAQs

Honors Program:

Earth and Planetary Science students with an overall grade point average of 3.3 in the University, including 3.3 in the major, may apply for admission to the honors program. Candidates for graduation with honors in EPS are required to take three units of EPS H195 and work on a senior thesis with a faculty member in the Department. Students are required to submit their thesis to both the undergraduate advisor and their faculty thesis advisor. Please contact the undergraduate advisor to learn more about EPS honors.

Minors:

The Department of Earth and Planetary Science has eight minors:

  • Atmospheric Science
  • Climate Science
  • Environmental Earth Science
  • Geology
  • Geophysics
  • Marine Science
  • Planetary Science
  • Earth and Planetary Science

You can work out the details when you see an undergraduate major advisor. Lower Division: EPS 50 or equivalent Upper Division, EPS 82 for Marine Science, EPS 7 or 81 for Climate Science. Five upper division courses are chosen from the major list with prior approval of the major advisor.  At least three of the five upper division courses must be completed at Berkeley. No more than one of the five required courses for your minor may be included in your major program. To substitute a course that is not on the minor list, please refer to the Course Substitution Process found here. All courses must be taken for a letter grade and a minimum 2.0 GPA is required in the upper division courses applied to the minor.

The EPS Climate Science Minor form is available here.

The form for all other EPS minors is available here.

Please submit the minor forms electronically to epsua@berkeley.edu to declare one of the minors. A minor must be declared no later than one semester prior to a student's Expected Graduation Term (EGT). The deadline is the last day of RRR week.