A prior professional degree in architecture (B.Arch. or M.Arch.), landscape architecture (B.L.A. or M.L.A.), or city and regional planning (M.C.P., M.U.P. with a strong design background).
Evidence of high-quality academic and professional work, including GRE and minimum TOEFL/IELTS score requirements.
Two years of professional experience after completion of the professional degree is recommended but not required. Applicants will be evaluated based on the quality of their work.
Recommended: A course in history/theory of urban form (comparable to City Planning 240). Students without this course will be expected to enroll in City Planning 240 during the program.
1. GRADUATE DIVISION APPLICATION
Submit the UC Berkeley Graduate Division online application, completing all of its sections.
2. STATEMENT OF PURPOSE
This is your academic statement. It should include a description of why you want to study your proposed subject field, why you want to study at UC Berkeley, and how our program can help you achieve your professional goals. For additional information, see our frequently asked questions page.
Note to Ph.D. applicants and applicants to the academic master's degree programs: The admissions committee will read your Statement of Purpose seeking an account of your prior research experience and looking for evidence that you are prepared to undertake a significant, sophisticated, independent and in-depth research project. Your competence and intellectual potential to undertake research is among the most important criteria considered by the admissions committee.
ARCHITECTURE PH.D. AND M.S. APPLICANTS ONLY
Architecture Ph.D. and Master of Science applicants should structure their Statement of Purpose as follows:
Part 1: Goals (500 words). A statement describing your general academic and career goals, the field(s) in which you would like to study, and why you wish to attend UC Berkeley in particular (you may want to refer to specific classes, faculty, or research projects that interest you). Your ideas should be clear, specific and persuasive.
Part 2: Research Proposal (500 words). An example of a specific research proposal that you may wish to undertake while at UC Berkeley. You may present a single proposal, or perhaps two alternates, about your dissertation Although you are not committed to do precisely what you propose (and, if fact, it is expected that your ideas will evolve during your studies), the committee will use this proposal to assess your ability to conceptualize a research plan. Your research proposal should succinctly frame a research question, articulate why it is important, demonstrate an understanding of the relevant literature and gaps in current knowledge, and identify what types of research methods one might apply to address the problem. If possible, identify faculty in architecture and/or other departments with whom you would like to work.
3. PERSONAL HISTORY STATEMENT
The Personal History Statement should convey how a combination of life experiences, idealism, role models, education and work experiences have influenced your decision to apply. You may also include any educational, familial, cultural, economic or social experiences, challenges or opportunities relevant to your academic journey. For tips on writing the Personal History Statement, see UC Berkeley's Personal Statement Guide.
ARCHITECTURE PH.D. AND M.S. APPLICANTS ONLY
Architecture Ph.D. and Master of Science applicants should structure their Personal History Statement as follows:
This essay (500 words, maximum) is a narrative description of your life background in terms of how it has prepared you for this next stage of your studies. It should describe relevant aspects of your life story and achievements, as well as educational and cultural opportunities or circumstances that supported or deprived you of such achievements; family background; economic circumstances; special interests and abilities; and community or social service involvement. Throughout, be selective in describing things that specifically relate to your academic goals and intellectual pursuits. In particular, please be sure to focus on details of your research experience, and how your background has prepared you for the next stage of your studies.
4. THREE LETTERS OF RECOMMENDATION
A minimum of three letters of recommendation must be submitted via the UC Berkeley Graduate Division online application by the application deadline. Applicants may submit additional letters if desired. Only letters that are submitted online will be considered. If your recommender is having trouble with the submittal system, please contact your graduate program adviser.
Applicants to the College of Environmental Design's graduate programs may be required to take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and/or the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)/International English Language Testing System (IELTS) examination. See the table below for the examination(s) required by your program. Please plan ahead and schedule your examinations at least one month prior to the application deadline so that we may have timely receipt of your scores.
ProgramDomestic ApplicantsInternational Applicants
*M.Arch applicants must submit scores from one type of exam. Those who must meet the English Language Proficiency Requirementshould submit TOEFL scores(IELTS scores can be submitted in place of TOEFL scores), and all others should submit GRE scores.
Applicants taking the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) must have their official scores reported to the UC Berkeley Graduate Division by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). Only GRE scores taken after June 2013 are valid. There is no minimum score requirement.
GRE SCHOOL AND DEPARTMENT CODES
GRE School Code: 4833
GRE Architecture Department Code: 4401
GRE City and Regional Planning Department Code: 4402
GRE Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning Department Code: 4405
GRE Urban Design Program Code: 4406
All international applicants from non-English-speaking countries must demonstrate English-language proficiency by taking the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) examination.
The TOEFL and IELTS must have been taken after June 2016 . Minimum required scores are 570 for the paper-based test, 90 for the internet-based test (iBT), and a 7 on the IELTS.
TOEFL SCHOOL AND DEPARTMENT CODES
TOEFL School Code: 4833
TOEFL Architecture Department Code: 12
TOEFL City and Regional Planning Department Code: 97
TOEFL Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning Department Code: 99
TOEFL Urban Design Department Code: 99
Submit an electronic or scanned copy of your official transcript(s) in PDF format from every post-secondary school that you have attended, including community colleges, summer sessions, and extension programs. Please make sure that transcript images are properly rotated, and not sideways or upside-down, and remove your Social Security number and birth date before submittal.
7. RESUME OR CURRICULUM VITAE
Submit an electronic copy of your resume or curriculum vitae that includes any publications, awards, or community/volunteer experiences you may have.
8. PORTFOLIO/EXHIBIT OF CREATIVE WORK
A digital portfolio is required for applicants to the following degree programs:
Master of Architecture
Master of City Planning — Urban Design Concentration
Master of Landscape Architecture — First and Second Professional Degrees
Master of Urban Design
The portfolio may contain up to 12 pages (8-1/2"x11"-format) of design content. Please note that beyond 12 pages, your portfolio may not be reviewed. Title page and/or table of contents may be submitted, and will not count toward the 12 pages of content. The digital portfolio should showcase recent, high-quality work, and will be judged on both content and overall design. Applicants without professional training may submit work that shows other evidence of creativity (studio art, construction/renovation, furniture design, etc.) and clearly demonstrates interest in the proposed subject field. Any material that is not entirely the applicant's own work must be clearly identified.
Portfolio must be saved as a single file in PDF format, and submitted via the UC Berkeley Graduate Division online application. The filesize must be no larger than 10MB. If your portfolio PDF file exceeds 10MB, try compressing it in Adobe Acrobat.
Note to M.Arch applicants: The portfolio may be in a two-page spread format, and any dimensions may be used. Please keep in mind the review will take place on monitors of varying size.
9. RECENT PUBLICATION, REPORT OR WRITING SAMPLE
A recent publication, report or writing sample must be submitted by applicants to the following degree programs:
Master of Landscape Architecture — Environmental Planning Emphasis
Master of Science in Architecture
Ph.D. in Architecture
Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning
Ph.D. in Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning (recent publication required, whether published or pending publishing)
The publication, report or writing sample should support the applicant's Statement of Purpose and clearly demonstrate research and writing abilities and/or analytical skills.
Publication, report or writing sample must be saved as a single file in PDF format, 50 pages maximum (no minimum page requirement), and submitted via the UC Berkeley Graduate Division online application. Filesize must be no larger than 10MB.
Begin at least 3 months before you apply.
The Master of Urban Design (MUD) degree program is a one-calendar year, advanced, interdisciplinary program of study for students with a prior professional degree in architecture, landscape architecture, or city and regional planning. The program's goals are to further train designers who can work effectively in teams across a large range of scales and who have a well-developed understanding of urban places and the interdependencies of the fabric of buildings, landscapes, public ways, and the social interactions that shape them.
The Program in the Design of Urban Places, leading to the Master of Urban Design degree, is a unique, interdisciplinary program of advanced study in which exceptional architects, landscape architects, and planners holding professional degrees partake of an intense, focused learning experience of 12-month duration. Students share working methods, acquire additional skills, and explore new avenues of development under the supervision of an interdisciplinary group of faculty members in the College of Environmental Design drawn from the Departments of Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning, and City and Regional Planning.
The program addresses the need for professionals who are specifically concerned with the design of varied urban areas open to public use. The activities of urban design are diverse in both type and scale. Urban designers may be concerned with settlement patterns in urbanizing areas, town layout, the restructuring of inner cities, and the design of streets and open spaces, buildings, and landscape patterns that establish neighborhoods and provide the settings for public life. They may shape the form and space of specific places such as civic or shopping centers, or they may design citywide systems such as streets, lighting, signing, greenways, or bicycle and pedestrian ways. They may work on infill in older towns and cities, or they may prepare plans, guidelines, or standards to manage extensive new development at the metropolitan growth edge.