The Clog’s guide to navigating the UC Berkeley campus

Daniel Ho/File
Daniel Ho/File

With the new school year and several thousand newcomers to campus, there have inevitably been some awkward moments as students (usually freshmen) end up sitting through an hour of the wrong discussion or barging into lecture late after running around outside the wrong building for half an hour. It’s okay though, we’re all a little lost inside. It’s perfectly fine if you get actually lost from time to time. Luckily, the Clog is here to help. This way, you can spend time finding yourself rather than finding your classes.

Double check your class/office hours/meeting/info session locations

First and foremost, make sure you know what you’re looking for. Don’t go through the entire process of learning the travel route only to realize that it was not the destination you were looking for. Make sure you’re looking for the right building, recheck the classroom number, and then go all the way and verify that you aren’t somehow actually enrolled in the Berklee College of Music. That’s in Boston, and you done goofed. 

Google Maps is your best friend

There’s a saying that you will meet some of your lifelong friends in college. That’s wrong — phones don’t last that long. But it’s impressive how accurate navigation apps are about campus buildings. At first glance, it’s a bit difficult to figure out which building is which, as, often, only some doors are labeled with the building name, but Maps has got you covered. No one knows how to read those campus directories anyway.

Use the Campanile as a focal point

You don’t want to spend the rest of your college career on your phone scrolling through Google Maps directions when there are social media apps to waste your time on! Figure out the major landmarks around campus and figure out building locations relative to the Campanile, Sather Gate, Memorial Glade or wherever you like to spend a lot of time at when on campus. It’s important to slowly build up a mental map of campus so you aren’t just living on your phone. Some relationships just aren’t meant to last. Sorry, Maps.

Check the floor plans of the building

While technology might be helpful for finding the right buildings, it’s much more limited in helping you find the actual room. Most buildings have floor guides that show and label the locations of each room. They usually don’t show multiple floors. The general rule of thumb is that the hundreds digit is the floor the room is located on; although, there are some cases where this generalization doesn’t apply. For some reason, Dwinelle has lettered levels that hold rooms listed in the thousands. Evans B6 does, in fact, exist. Latimer, Lewis and Hildebrand are separate buildings (sort of). The Haas School of Business is just an absolute mess, and let’s not even go there.

Ask for help, silly

When all else fails, there is one resource that is all around you: other students. Even if they haven’t exactly found themselves, there are thousands upon thousands of students who have at least some idea of where your classroom should be. So long as you aren’t trying to flyer them, the general student body is pretty happy to help out!

Worst case scenario, though, they might also be equally lost and thus absolutely no help whatsoever. In that case, maybe you’ve found that lifelong friend.


Contact Jonathan Lai at [email protected] .