Your First Semester

Congrats, and welcome Fall 2018 FPF students!

So, you've accepted your admission to Berkeley and you've chosen FPF as your first-year pathway. Awesome! Now what? Here is a bird's-eye view of what you can expect between May and August. 

Step 1: Plan your fall schedule

Golden Bear Advising is the online orientation that you will complete during the summer through bCourses. Once you have registered for FPF, you will receive an invitation from bCourses to start your online orientation. This is where you can learn about requirements and what classes you should take in the fall. At the end of Golden Bear Advising, you will complete a College Assignment, after which you will be able to make your first 1-on-1 advising appointment. See below to get a preview of the various college requirements. 

Step 2: Build your schedule

After you've picked courses that you're interested in, please search on to find what's available. Be sure to search "FPF" to find courses within the FPF curriculum. All FPF course subjects start with "X," for example: XMATH or XART. You can also filter for FPF classes in Schedule Builder on CalCentral.

As part of your Golden Bear Advising, you will be submitting a proposed fall semester schedule. Your FPF Advisor will review and approve your proposed schedule before you can schedule your first advising appointment. 

FPF is designed to create a learning community where students have greater opportunities for shared academic experiences during the fall semester. As such, FPF students will take their core academic courses from the list above. However, students are welcome to enroll in enrichment elective opportunities outside of FPF, including Theme Housing, ROTC, DeCals, Symphony Orchestra, Physical Education, and Berkeley Connect. Others will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Students should contact their FPF advisor for any other enrichment opportunities which fall outside of the FPF curriculum.

Step 3: Get advice

In late-May, you will be assigned an FPF Advisor and they will be reaching out to you by email to introduce themselves. They will be your point person for all questions related to FPF, campus, being a successful undergrad and much more! Your first schedule advising appointment will follow after you have submitted your College Assignment through Golden Bear Advising in bCourses. 

FPF Advisors will be hosting these live advising webinars in June:

FPF Pre-Med Advising - Tuesday, June 12, 2018 - 4:00-5:00 PM

FPF Pre-Business Advising - Wednesday, June 13, 2018 - 4:00-5:00 PM

Curious who might become your FPF Advisor? Check out our staff page.

Step 4: Enroll in classes

For Fall 2018 classes, you will enroll online through CalCentral. We do enrollment in two "phases." Phase I starts July 18 (up to 13.5 units) and Phase II starts July 31 (up to 16.5 units). FPF students, like continuing students, have two-phase enrollment for the fall semester.  Check your CalCentral on the My Academics page for your unique enrollment time. This is the same two-phase process that you will have for enrolling in spring semester courses. Other new students will have a single-phase enrollment, but we're special.

Step 5: Buy your books

We recommend that you wait until your fall schedule is finalized before buying your books. Most instructors do not expect all of their students to have their books in the first week of instruction since it is common for students to add and drop classes in the first two weeks.

Some courses use readers in addition to or instead of textbooks. At the beginning of the semester, your instructor will let you know where to buy the reader.

The bookstore is located at 2560 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, CA 94704

To buy online:

  1. Visit, select Textbooks and then select Fall 2016 term.
  2. To select by department, FPF books are listed by class, but each class is listed according to the FPF course  abbreviation, starting with an "X." Example: Psychology at FPF is listed as "XPSYCH." English at FPF is listed at "XENGLIS." Choosing a department without the proper abbreviation will display the wrong books.
  3. Select your course based on the FPF online schedule of classes.
  4. Select your section: Again, choose the appropriate section using the FPF online schedule of classes.

Heads up: Some instructors do not submit a list of course materials until closer to the start of the fall semester. If no books are listed online, check back again later.

Be savvy! There are ways to save money on books by renting or buying used. Sometimes you can buy textbooks from other online booksellers at lower price.

Step 6: Get oriented!

Your first week at Berkeley will be action-packed with Golden Bear Orientation! This is the time when you will meet your fellow classmates, attend fun events and outings together, and learn all about what it means to be a true Bear.