Requirements: Lower Division


Data 8, Foundations of Data Science (CS/INFO/STAT C8), introduces students to the field of Data Science through computational and inferential thinking. Intended for students of all backgrounds, it has no prerequisites.

Beyond Data 8, a firm mathematical foundation allows students to understand with precision the ideas and methods of data science. Calculus forms a basis for studying distributions and optimization. Linear algebra leads to understanding properties of arrays of data, including dependence and dimensionality.  Program structures provides students with a rigorous working knowledge of computer science concepts important for data analytics, including algorithms,  interpretation, abstraction, and a proficiency of programming based upon them sufficient to construct substantial stand-alone programs. Data structures establish algorithmic foundations that dictate whether a computational process is efficient or intractable, and understanding properties of arrays, lists, trees, graphs, heaps, hashes and associated computational and storage complexity is as essential to data science as its mathematical foundations.


  • A minimum 2.0 overall Grade Point Average is required to remain in good standing.
Declaration Eligibility
  • The prerequisites to declare the major are Foundations of Data Science, Calculus I, Calculus II, Linear Algebra, Program Structures, and Data Structures.
  • All prerequisites to declare must be completed for a letter grade and passed with a 'C-' or higher.
  • Students must achieve a 2.0 Grade Point Average in Data 8, Linear Algebra, and Data Structures to be eligible to declare. The grades earned in Calculus I & II and Program Structures will not be factored into this GPA requirement.
  • If a student chooses to take more than one upper-division course toward the major prior to declaring, they must have a minimum 2.0 Grade Point Average in all upper-division courses completed toward the major at the time of declaration.
Declaration Process
  • Students will be able to apply to declare during the semester they expect to complete their last remaining prerequisites, and their application will be evaluated upon receipt of grades for that semester.

Major Prerequisites

The table below reflects the lower-division courses that all students must take to declare the Data Science major.

Requirement Preferred Track Alternate Course Options
Foundations of Data Science Data 8 (COMPSCI/STAT/INFO C8)
Calculus I* Math 1A Math 10A or 16A
Calculus II* Math 1B
Linear Algebra Math 54 or Stat 89A (4 unit offering) EL ENG 16A and EL ENG 16B (both required), or Physics 89
Program Structures CS 61A or CS 88 ENGIN 7
Data Structures CS 61B
*The Data Science BA accepts Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and A-Level exam credit for the calculus requirements, per the UC Berkeley Math department guidelines.


All policies and course lists are subject to finalization.

Program Updates

Updated 1/22 at 12:55pm.

Data 8 Grandfathering:

  • Grandfathering for Data 8 has been extended through Spring 2019. 

    This option is best suited for students who have already completed CS 61A or one of the approved Statistics options. Intended Data Science majors who have not yet completed any of these courses are strongly encouraged to take Data 8.

  • First year students admitted to UC Berkeley in or after Fall 2018 are not eligible to substitute for Data 8.

Linear Algebra:

  • We accept linear algebra without differential equations from California community colleges in all cases where the course is included in a Math 54 articulation agreement. Linear algebra courses from non-California community colleges may be considered by individual petition.

Courses taken P/NP:

  • Prerequisite courses taken on a P/NP basis before Fall 2018 will be accepted. Grades of ‘P’ earned will be evaluated as ‘C-’ for GPA calculation purposes. Courses taken on a P/NP basis after Summer 2018 will not be accepted.