Admissions Application Prep

A guide for every stage of the application process

Congratulations on taking the first step towards reaching your data analytics goals! We're so excited to be on this journey with you. This admission application prep is designed to equip you with tools, resources, and tips one step at a time from now until the application deadline.


Click through the resources below to get started.


Application Steps

1. Planning


Introspection is a vital component of initiating your graduate school application. Knowing where you come from, where you currently stand to achieve your academic and professional goals, and where you want to go in your career will help steer your graduate school application.

Questions you may consider:

  • What did I enjoy about my undergraduate major?
  • What did I least enjoy about my undergraduate major?
  • What do I like most about my current/previous jobs?
  • What do I like least about my current/previous jobs?
  • Did my undergraduate degree and current/past professional experiences align with my passions?
  • Why did I choose my undergraduate major? Why did I select my recent employment? Am I happy with those decisions and experiences?
  • What characteristics do my most influential supervisors or mentors have that inspire me?
  • What traits and abilities do I value in supervisors, colleagues, classmates, or friends?
  • What skills or experiences are missing in my growth process (professionally or personally)?
  • Thinking five years ahead, how would I define success when I look back at my graduate school experiences? What tools do I want to have in my arsenal?
Request transcripts
  • For the application review process, request a current transcript from every post-secondary school you have attended, including community colleges, summer sessions, and extension programs. Unofficial transcripts and other required academic records should be uploaded, in PDF format, with the online application. Full academic disclosure is required. Please note that applicants are not required to mail transcripts to our office at the time of application.
    • Include a copy of the transcript legend or grading scale with the transcript.
    • Unofficial transcripts must include at a minimum the name of the institution, your full name, and a chronological listing of all classes and grades.
    • If your academic records do not include official evidence of the award of your degree, you must also submit additional documents that verify the degree conferral, such as a diploma or degree certificate.
    • International applicants: Unofficial transcripts and WES evaluations are both required. Academic records should be issued in the original language and accompanied by English translations (usually prepared by your university or Ministry of Education, unless the institution issues original documents in English). English translations are required for all languages; degree names and grades should be transliterated, not converted into English words or the U.S. letter grades of A-F. If your home institution does not issue documents in English, you may submit translations prepared by certified translators from the American Translators Association.
  • The IEOR department does not require official transcripts at the time of submitting the application.
    • If an offer of admission is made, applicants will be required to send to the Graduate Division the official paper documents for verification. Offers will not be considered final until the Graduate Division has received the official documents that match the uploaded record. In general, records or transcripts must be issued by the institution and include the institution’s stamp or embossed seal and the signature of the authorizing official. Official electronic transcripts sent directly by the institution are accepted.
    • If you have attended UC Berkeley, official transcripts with evidence of degree conferral will not be required if admitted.
  • For more information, visit: Transcripts

Schedule your tests

Be sure to schedule your tests in advance; aim to take the exam by November to give yourself enough time for the score. Taking the test early will allow your results to be available by the application submission deadline. Remember, it's valid for five years.

2. GRE

  • Please send the official scores to Berkeley at institution code4833 by the deadline. Please do not send them to the IEOR department.
  • There is no minimum score required.
  • Only tests taken within the past 5 years are acceptable. For Fall 2023 admissions, tests taken before June 2017 will not be accepted.
  • Test results for the General GREs must be sent to code 4833 only (the Berkeley institution code).
  • Please keep in mind that ETS sends us test scores twice a month electronically, so even if you've received them, it does not mean that we have. Because this is the case, it's a good idea to take the tests as early as possible in advance.
  • UC Berkeley current undergraduates and alumni applying to the IEOR department who earned their UC Berkeley bachelor’s degree with a 3.5 or higher cumulative GPA are not required to submit GRE scores with their application.
  • For more information, visit: Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

3. Letters of Rec

Reaching out

We require three letters of recommendation. The LOR portion is one of the most essential parts of the application and is often overlooked. These letters are a third-party testimonial to you and your ability to handle the technical coursework, as well as your leadership capabilities and problem-solving skills.
Ideally, you will submit a combination of professional and academic references. The important part is that the recommender knows you well. 
Reach out to your recommenders as early as possible to give them adequate time to submit. Requesting a recommendation is best done when you have scheduled an appointment. Setting an appointment will allow for a designated time for you to discuss your future goals and past achievements. Schedule a meeting either in-person, via Zoom, or phone to check-in. Show up prepared for your meeting. Outline a list of your achievements, career goals, areas for improvement, and information about what you hope to get out of your graduate program. A resume/CV, transcripts, and any academic samples you have may be helpful to reference.
When ready, you can send letter of recommendation requests in the Recommendations section of the online application. Note, recommendation letters must be received by the application deadline.
See Career Center for additional guidance.

4. Essays

Statement of Purpose

The Statement of Purpose is your "academic statement" and should convey why you are interested in the program, what you will contribute to the program, and what you plan to do after the program.
  • This essay should include the following:
    • Academic and research experiences
    • Publications and/or presentations
    • Internship or employment opportunities you have had
    • Your motivation and interests in the program, including your professional objectives, research interests, areas of specialization, etc.
    • Additional contributions to your program of study: Let us know how your experience has led to the perfect fit for this program. Are there specific IEOR faculty you want to work with? Why are you choosing this program at UC Berkeley specifically?
  • Be concise; an ideal essay should say everything it needs to with brevity. Approximately 500 to 1000 well-selected words (1-2 single space pages in 12 point font) is better than more words with less clarity and poor organization.
  • For more information, visit: Statement of Purpose

Personal Statement

The Personal History statement should provide insight to you as a person and any personal experiences that have influenced you to apply for graduate studies in IEOR. Take this opportunity to write about your personal goals, dreams, and what motivates you towards your degree and objectives. Remember to be authentic in your essay, as we want to hear your voice and perspective.
  • Discuss how your personal background informs your decision to pursue a graduate degree. This statement can also include any obstacles or barriers that you have overcome during your educational career or any social or community projects/programs with which you have worked.
  • Please include any of the following information:
    • Educational, familial, cultural, economic, or social experiences, challenges, or opportunities relevant to your academic journey
    • How you might contribute to social or cultural diversity within your chosen field
    • How you might serve educationally underrepresented segments of society with your degree
  • Be concise; an ideal essay should say everything it needs to with brevity. Approximately 500 to 1000 well-selected words (1-2 single space pages in 12 point font) is better than more words with less clarity and poor organization.
  • For more information, visit: Personal Statement

5. Professional Experience

  • Upload your resume so that the admissions committee may gain a more in-depth understanding about your academic and professional experiences.
  • We value a diversity of backgrounds and accept candidates with a wide range of experiences. The admissions committee is not looking at quantity but rather the quality, range, and substance of your experiences.
  • Although work experience is not required for admission, we want to know about your professional, internship, and research experiences.
  • Treat your resume like a snapshot of your experiences, and then use your essays to delve deeper. Here are some tips for writing your resume:
    • Be organized: Remember to be clear and concise with your resume. A resume should not exceed 1-2 pages and should be organized, ideally chronologically.
    • Be to the point: Outline your experiences in a well-written (no acronyms) and succinct way that accounts honestly for your accomplishments. You do not need to elaborate on each position held on your resume. Your Statement of Purpose will allow you to dive deeper into these experiences and where you plan to go from here.
    • Show clear advancement towards your goals: Your resume should highlight your career progression. Showcase a timeline from the beginning to now. Remember, your Statement of Purpose will fill in where you plan to go from here.
  • 6. Audio/Visual

    Your application's audio/visual component should address the following question: Tell us about a time you observed how analytics made a major impact globally or locally. What were the pros and the cons?


    • Keep your A/V short and straightforward- Be concise in your audio/visual recording. Collect your thoughts and aim to answer the prompt. You want to make sure your viewer does not miss any important information you wish to convey.
    • Speak with confidence and enthusiasm- Speaking clearly and confidently will help maintain viewer engagement and help you convey your message.
    • Be aware of your environment when recording- If you are submitting a video recording, feel free to be creative with your environment, record on campus, create an exciting background, work with your lighting. Whether working with visual or audio, be mindful of your environment to ensure you have little to no disturbances that could distract from your voice and, most importantly, your message. Remember, your answer to the prompt is what will be reviewed.
    • Capture and upload the best possible quality- If recording a video, please make sure your recording device is placed around your eye level. To avoid (or reduce) "shaky cam," keep the recording device stationery while filming. *NOTE: It is ideal for the highest quality video to film on a smartphone as it doesn't rely so heavily on specific software. Remember, you will not be evaluated on the quality of your video.
    • Be yourself!

    7. Gather Materials

    Now that you have completed steps 1-6, it is time to review your application materials one last time before submission. Review the Admissions Requirements to ensure you have completed the necessary steps and are ready to submit your:  
    1. Application fee
    2. Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
    3. Transcripts
    4. Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
    5. Letters of Recommendation
    6. Statement of Purpose
    7. Personal Statement
    8. Resume

    8. Finish Line

    Now that your materials are ready, it’s time to approach the finish line. Give your materials one last review before submitting your application.
    • Revisit this application prep checklist to ensure all of your materials are in order. If you can check all the boxes, you’re on your way to a complete application. Submit a completed online application.
    • The application process is entirely electronic. Please do not mail any documents to the IEOR Department.
    • Your application will only be considered complete when all forms are submitted electronically, and all official test scores have been received by the deadline. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.
    • If possible, ask someone else to review your application before submitting it. A fresh overview may allow for discrepancies to be caught before submitting!

    9. Complete your Application

    Give yourself enough time to submit your application. Don’t wait until the very last minute to hit submit.

    Retain a copy of your submission confirmation for your reference.

    Congratulations, you have completed the application prep! We look forward to learning more about you in your application and wish you the best of luck!


    Application Deadline

    January 6, 2023

    Explore the Admissions Process

    Information Sessions for Prospective Students

    These information session recordings cover the program, curriculum, and career opportunities within the analytics field.

    Program Overview

    Admission Requirements