Getting Set Up

UC Berkeley ID Card, Clipper Card, and Email

To get your UC Berkeley ID Card, you need to go to the Cal 1 Card office in the Cesar Chavez Student Center in Lower Sproul Plaza. Here is their website. You will need your driver's license, and will need to have created a CalNet ID and know your student ID number.

When you pick up your Cal ID, you will also receive your Clipper card, which allows you to ride AC Transit (the bus system in the area) for free.

You may submit your photo to the Cal 1 Card office online ahead of time, but either way you a photo ID and your student ID number to pick up your card.

For your UC Berkeley email (bConnected), you should have received your student ID number and passphrase already. You may already have an account, otherwise you will need to create one. Just go to the bConnected website and log in with your student ID and passphrase.

Registering for Classes

As an incoming student, you should register for at least one three-unit class as soon as possible (this will help get your fees paid on time so that you can then get your Class Pass [bus pass]). Later, you can fill out your schedule with the full load of courses you'll actually be taking.

Unless you plan to take an out-of-department class, don't worry too much about registering for classes until after you arrive on campus and the semester starts. Deadlines listed online are only for undergrads.

To register for classes, go here. You will need to sign in with your CalNet ID and passphrase. You can find the schedule of classes here. Also, check out the course enrollment guide for information on choosing courses.

Astronomy Department Computer Stuff

You will need to see Bill Boyd to get an astronomy department account. This account will

  • allow you to log onto department machines (i.e. for fast computing, try logging into lupus or beast)
  • give you 5 GB of space in your home directory on /o/
  • give you a directory on /pharlap1/ for more space if you need it
  • give you email addresses, which will be forwarded to whatever email address you specify. By default you get as well as (first initial)(last name)

For printing, check out this page

Cubicles, keys, and key cards

To get your cubicle assignment, to get your key card (student ID) programmed, and to get any hard keys you might need, talk to Nina Ruymaker (501C) and/or Mark Hayden (501/Reception) in Campbell Hall.

Getting Paid

Amber keeps a google drive here with handy information about pay, including your pay rates. Note that all of the sheets are for the academic year, i.e. 2019 means academic year 2019-2020 (and summer pay thus refers to summer 2020). Each student also has a financial statement that they can check to monitor their pay status.

If you have an outside source of funding (scholarship, fellowship, etc.) make sure to let Amber Banayat ( know ASAP.

If you are teaching (which should be most of you), you should receive a Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) Contract via email from Amber a few weeks before the semester starts. Once you have replied to Amber saying you accept the contract, you should get an email from the staff member in charge of payroll. Make sure to inquire with said staff member about withholding for Federal and state taxes. Much of our pay (fellowships, in particular) do not have automatic withholding, and if you don't withhold extra during the year, you'll end up with a hefty penalty come tax time.

You'll also need to sign up for EFT (electronic funds transfer), which you can do by clicking here. The account you link to your EFT will receive all paychecks, reimbursements, and other Berkeley-related deposits. It is unclear at this time whether this covers everything. Amber has been told by the university that students should sign up for direct deposit through UC Path.