The Program

2012-13 Ph.D. Handbook [PDF] 

The Ph.D. in architecture is a research degree appropriate for those seeking careers in teaching and scholarship in architecture and its related areas, or in roles in government or professional consultation that require depth in specialization and experience in research. Berkeley’s Ph.D. program in architecture is interdisciplinary in outlook, reaching into the various disciplines related to architecture and incorporating substantial knowledge from outside fields. Students admitted to this program carry out a program of advanced study and research, both on the basis of formal class work and of individual investigation. Work centers on three related fields of study, the major field (the basis for the dissertation), and one-to-two minor fields, at least one of which must be from a discipline outside architecture.

The Faculty

Name Research Areas Specializations
Nezar AlSayyad
Professor of Architecture, City Planning, Urban Design and Urban History; Chair, Center for Middle Eastern Studies; President, International Association for the Study of Traditional Environments
Architecture and Urban History, Environmental Design and Urbanism in Developing Countries, Housing and International Development, Urban Design Traditional Dwellings and Settlements, Cinematic Urbanism, Hybrid Urbanism, Fundamentalism, Middle Eastern Cities, Virtual Reality
Gail S. Brager
Professor of Architecture; Associate Director, Center for Environmental Design Research
Building Science and Sustainability, Energy and Indoor Environmental Quality Passive Design Strategies, Comfort and Adaptation in Naturally-Ventilated Buildings, Post-Occupancy Evaluation, Personal Comfort Systems
Luisa Caldas
Professor of Architecture; Joint Faculty Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Integration of Sustainability and Energy Dimensions into the Design Process Evolutionary Computation; Generative Design Systems in Architecture; Thermal and Daylighting Behavior of Buildings; Development of New Construction Materials
Greg Castillo
Associate Professor of Architecture
History of Architecture 20th Century Architecture with Emphasis on Mid-Century Modernism, Cold War-Era Design, Consumer Culture, Architecture and the History of Emotions
Galen Cranz
Professor of Architecture
Social and Cultural Basis of Architecture and Urbanism Chairs and Body-Conscious Design, Urban Parks, the Sociology of Taste, Ethnography for Design, Post-Occupancy Evaluation, Qualitative Research Methods
Margaret Crawford
Professor of Architecture
History of Architecture and Urbanism, Urban History and Theory, Urban Design Everyday Urbanism
C. Greig Crysler
Arcus Chair in Gender, Sexuality and the Built Environment; Associate Professor of Architecture
Design Theories and Methods, Theory of Architecture and Urbanism Architectures of Globalization, Discourses of Architecture and Urbanism
Paul Groth
Professor of Architecture and Geography
American Cultural Landscapes, Cultural Geography, History of Architecture, U.S. Rural Suburban and Urban History since 1870 American Vernacular Architecture, Ordinary Architecture, History of Housing
Stefano Schiavon
Assistant Professor of Architecture
Sustainability, Energy, and Indoor Environmental Quality Energy Consumption in Buildings, Ventilation Strategies, Personal Environmental Control Systems, Radiant-Hydronic Systems, Air Movement, Thermal Comfort, Systems Integration and Building Renovation, Building Performance Simulations, Post-Occupancy Evaluations and the Effect of the Indoor Environment on Heath and Productivity
Andrew Shanken
Associate Professor of Architecture
History of Architecture and Urbanism, American Architecture Architecture and Consumer Culture, Memory and the Built Environment, Paper Architecture and the Unbuilt, Expositions, Themed Landscapes, and Architectural Rhetoric

The Fields of Study

The Ph.D. degree emphasizes course work and supervised independent research in one of the following areas of study:

Major fields outside these fields or combinations thereof may also be proposed at the time of admission.

Course work is individually developed through consultation with an academic adviser. Outside fields of study may take advantage of the University’s varied resources. Recent graduates have completed outside fields in anthropology, art history, business administration, city and regional planning, computer science, various engineering fields, psychology, women’s studies, geography and sociology.

The Requirements

NOTE: Details of these requirements are currently under discussion by the M.S./Ph.D. committee and will be updated when finalized. Program requirements will also be made available in a forthcoming student handbook.

The Ph.D. program in architecture is governed by the regulations of the University Graduate Division and administered by the departmental Ph.D. committee. Specific degree requirements include:

  • A minimum of two years in residence.
  • Completion of a one-semester course in research methods.
  • Satisfaction of a foreign language requirement. Note: Language requirements for Ph.D. students are currently being discussed and may vary depending on the specialty area. Details will be forthcoming.
  • Completion of one-to-two outside fields of study.
  • A written qualifying examination, followed by an oral qualifying examination.
  • A dissertation.

Course requirements for the degree include:

Requirement Number of Units
Course Requirements for All Ph.D. Students
Research Methods, Specialty Area 4
Inside Field (Specialty Area) 9 (Minimum)
Outside Field(s) 12 (Minimum)
Two Departmental Colloquia for M.S./Ph.D. Students 2
Additional Course Requirements for Ph.D. Students with Non-Architecture Degrees
Architecture Breadth Courses TBD*

* Note: The exact number of required breadth units is under discussion. These will include courses inside the Department of Architecture but outside the speciality area, and may include lectures, seminars or studio. These courses may also be one of the outside fields for the degree. Students are encouraged to work closely with their advisers to select courses appropriate for their academic plan.