Minimum requirements for admission include:
A 3.0 GPA for the last two years of undergraduate study;
Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university;
The Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
All applicants from countries in which the official language is not English are required to submit official evidence of English language proficiency (TOEFL, IELTS)
Other factors that weigh heavy in the review process include your statemens (Statement of Purpose, Personal History Statment), letters of recommendation and work experience. Be sure to submit recommendations from individuals who know you well and can speak for the quality of your work. One or two recommendations should be submitted from people who are in position to appraise your depth of character and commitment, work effectiveness, ability to work with people and leadership potential on the job or in community activities. At least one should come from someone who can evaluate your performance in academic settings. The two statements, as a unit, should clearly present why you are interested in a planning career, your goals, and what you hope to achieve in a Berkeley professional program.
Work in this field requires at a minimum the ability to write well and the ability to master analytic skills in quantitative methods. It also requires some familiarity with political institutions and governmental organizations. DCRP expects entering students to demonstrate basic skills/conceptual understanding in the following areas:
Writing Ability : All entering students must demonstrate their ability to write clearly and organize their thoughts in a coherent manner. Evidence of this skill would be provided in an applicant's Statements of Purpose, or a submission of written work.
Introductory Statistics : In planning, one must be able to identify the characteristics of and interrelationships between aggregates of one kind or another: people, places, structures, buildings, organizations, etc. Some knowledge of descriptive statistics and hypothesis testing is therefore essential for introductory planning studies, especially for those student who seek to master the more advanced statistical methods in planning analysis. Students with no mathematics background may find it helpful to also take some college-level math in addition to the statistics, to enhance your comfort with the field if for no other reason.
Economics : Students should have taken introductory microeconomics at a minimum. Most planning issues involve resource allocation problems of one kind or another, and microeconomic analysis can be an immensely helpful tool in such instances.
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.
The mission of the Department of City and Regional Planning at UC Berkeley is to improve equity, the economy and the environment in neighborhoods, communities, cities, and metropolitan regions by creating knowledge and engagement through our teaching, research, and service. We aim to design and create cities, infrastructure, and public services that are sustainable, affordable, enjoyable, and accessible to all.
Wisely and successfully intervening in the public realm, whether locally, nationally, or globally, is a challenge. Our urban future is complex and rapidly changing. Resource scarcity and conflict, technological innovation, retrofitting of existing built environments, and social empowerment will alter the ways in which planning has conventionally been carried out. We believe the planning academy has a special responsibility to always address social justice, equity, and ethics; to teach and research means of public participation, collective decision making, and advocacy; and to focus on reforming institutions, urban governance, policy and planning practices to make these goals possible.
Master of City Planning
The two-year Master of City Planning program comprises a solid core of knowledge in the field of city and regional planning, including history and theory, planning methods, urban economics, and urban institutions analysis. The program offers the opportunity to specialize in one of four concentration areas: Environmental Planning and Healthy Cities; Housing, Community and Economic Development; Transportation Policy and Planning; and Urban Design.
Students plan their individual programs with the help of their assigned faculty advisers. Faculty advisers will also guide students as they plan, develop and write their professional report, client report or thesis. First-year students should set an initial meeting with their assigned advisers during the first or second week of classes. Students declare a concentration at the end of the first semester by completing a study plan, signed by the adviser, and filing it with the graduate student affairs officer (GSAO). Students may change advisers to one in their declared concentration.
PhD in City Planning
The PhD in City Planning at the University of California, Berkeley provides training in urban and planning theory, advanced research, and the practice of planning. Established in 1968, the program has granted more than 170 doctorates. Alumni of the program have established national and international reputations as planning educators, social science researchers and theorists, policy makers and practitioners. Today the program is served by nearly 20 City and Regional Planning faculty with expertise in community and economic development, transportation planning, urban design, international development, environmental planning, and global urbanism. With close ties to numerous research centers and initiatives, the program encourages its students to develop specializations within the field of urban studies and planning and to expand their intellectual horizons through training in the related fields of architecture, landscape architecture and environmental planning, civil engineering, anthropology, geography, sociology, public policy, public health, and political science.