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Application Process / FAQs

This page provides you with all the information you need to apply to live at I-House. Please read through the Frequently Asked Questions listed below to learn more about who is eligible to live at I-House and our application process. It is important to review this information thoroughly before beginning your online application.

Please note that the answers below apply to our standard Academic Year (AY) application process.  Procedures and policies for summer housing vary due to the multiple sessions, distinct student population, and shorter periods of occupancy.  

Application Process Frequently Asked Questions

How is I-House handling COVID-19 safety measures?

I-House is committed to ensuring a safe and healthy experience for its residents, staff, and all associated with the House. 

Is I-House just for international students?  Can American students apply?

I-House is not just for international students! Each year, approximately 75 percent of our residents are international students. The remaining 25 percent are residents from the U.S. who are interested in living in a community where international exchange and cultural sharing is part of the daily experience. This diversity of perspectives and experiences is an essential component of what makes I-House unique.

Who is eligible to live at I-House?

The following are eligible to live at International House during the Academic Year:

  • Registered UC Berkeley students as well as those who are affiliated with the Wright Institute, the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute, LBNL, and the Graduate Theological Union. 

  • Undergraduates who have attained junior or senior class standing, as well as having completed at least 60 UC units prior to their period of occupancy. 

  • Graduate and postdoctoral students, visiting scholars and researchers and Education Abroad Reciprocity students

  • International students who are attending UC Berkeley through University Extension.

  • All occupants must be at least 18 years old.

Residents may reside at International House for a maximum of eight full Academic Year semesters. Summer Session residency is not counted toward this semester total, however, eligibility will end at the completion of the eighth Academic Year semester. Due to the high demand for housing at International House, this policy is in place to ensure we are able to provide as many students as possible with the opportunity to live at I-House and benefit from our unique offerings.

When should I apply?

  • Academic Year:  Applications are available online on February 23, 2022, for the 2022-23 Academic Year.
  • Spring, 2023: We will begin accepting applications on October 12, 2022. 
  • Summer, 2023: We will begin accepting applications on February 15, 2023. 
  • Fall, 2023: We will begin accepting applications on February 15, 2023.

For group bookings, contact the Admissions Office at ihres@berkeley.edu.

What is the waitlist process?

I-House does not have a waitlist. Rather, we conduct a rolling application process which means we will continue accepting applications and all eligible applicants are placed in a pool. As rooms become available, we will select applicants from this pool to fill these openings.

How do you determine who will be offered housing at International House?

Applications are reviewed in the order that they are received. The first 300 successfully “acknowledged” applications will be given priority to receive a housing offer for the Academic Year. 

Once we have reached 300 confirmed reservations, we will enter our Selective Phase of consideration. This process is designed to increase the diversity of our resident population and best fill the needs of the House. During this phase, applications are ranked based on a range of criteria which may include Citizenship, Major/Area of Study, and more. In some cases, the Statement of Intent may be used as an additional criterion. 

New and existing successfully “acknowledged” applicants who have not yet been chosen, will remain in that status and may be reconsidered until all available spaces have been filled. Based on the aforementioned criteria, those whose Citizenship and/or Major Area of Study are less represented in our resident population will be given priority for all remaining spaces.  

How long does it usually take to hear from Admissions?

The Admissions team will reach out to you only if your application is not completed properly, if we need more information from you in order to process your application, if you do not qualify to live at I-House or if you are receiving an offer. Because we have a rolling admissions process and there is no specific date we stop making offers, we do not send out notices that you are not receiving an offer unless you do not qualify.

Can I apply for Fall-Only room and board?

I-House offers a very limited number of Fall Semester-Only contracts. To qualify, you must provide documentation that you will be attending UC Berkeley or are eligible to live at I-House for only the Fall semester. 

To request that your application be changed to Fall Only, once you have completed Phase 1 of the full-Academic Year application, you must email ihres@berkeley.edu to request being placed on our Fall Semester-Only interest list. If you do not send this email within 48 hours of your application submission, your application will be processed as a full-Academic Year application.

My stay in Berkeley does not match your semester dates. Do you accommodate shorter or longer stays?

We realize that not all academic visits match our Academic Calendar, however we are not able to adjust contract dates. If you have extenuating circumstances, please contact the Admissions Office at ihres@berkeley.edu

*Please note: Extenuating circumstances would not include your program dates not matching our contract dates.

Can you accommodate residents with disabilities?

I-House strives to be accessible and welcoming to all residents. Upon request, International House provides reasonable accommodations to those with disabilities. Requests for disability accommodations should be directed to Roxanne Pifer and/or Melinda Jeger, at ihres@berkeley.edu.

Such requests must be in writing and supported by medical documentation demonstrating the necessity for the requested accommodation. Each request is evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Please submit requests for accommodation as far in advance as possible, as review/implementation can take several weeks.

Do you accept paper applications?

No. We accept only applications submitted through our website.

How does the online application work? What do I need to apply?

  1. Uploading all required documents 

  2. Paying the $50.00 non-refundable application fee with a Visa or Mastercard

  3. Submitting your application

Please be sure to submit the correct required documents in their entirety. Failure to do so could result in a delay in your application processing or denial of your application.

Once you have submitted your application you will receive an automated response. If you have not received an email response, please return to your application and review the steps. 

Please see “How do you determine who will be offered housing” to learn about the next steps. 

**Please note that the process for Summer Session applications is slightly different. Additional details can be found on the Summer Housing page.

Do you require a deposit when booking a reservation?

For the academic year, a $1,500 deposit/prepayment is required to complete Phase 2 of the application. This $1,500 payment is applied to your final housing installment prior to move-out, assuming that there are no outstanding fees or charges on your resident account. The $1,500 can be paid online with a Visa or Mastercard and must be submitted to accept the offer and confirm your booking.

How can I pay the application fee?

When beginning your I-House application, we require a nonrefundable application fee of $50 which can be paid online either with a Visa or Mastercard.

I have a question about my student visa / H-1 status; can I-House Admissions help with that?

The best resource for any questions regarding visas, H-1s, and work eligibility for international students is the Berkeley International Office (BIO). You can learn more about their services on their website: http://internationaloffice.berkeley.edu/. You can also contact them directly by email at InternationalOffice@berkeley.edu or by phone at (510) 642-2818.

Who do I contact if I am having technical problems or have other questions regarding my application?

You may contact Admissions via email at ihres@berkeley.edu or by phone at (510) 642-9470.

Just living here gives you a much more balanced view of other countries. Everything from lunch to laundry, is a cultural event.
A former I-House resident