City + Regional Planning

Admission Requirements

Master of City Planning


The application cycle for the Master of City Planning (M.C.P.) program begins after the first week of September when the UC Berkeley Graduate Application becomes accessible online. Admission is for the fall term only and on a full-time basis.

Please see CED Graduate Admissions for application deadlines and procedures. We also encourage applicants to review our M.C.P. Frequently Asked Questions and Fall 2019 Admission Statistics. Applicants are encouraged to download our MCP Application Checklist (PDF).

[SIGN UP TODAY!]: MCP Admissions Blog

* indicates required

UPDATE REGARDING THE GRADUATE RECORD EXAM (GRE): Due to challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic, for the Fall 2021 admissions cycle, the GRE will be WAIVED (NOT REQUIRED) for applicants to the Master of City Planning (M.C.P) program.  

Admission Requirements

Applicants are encouraged to download our MCP Application Checklist (PDF).

Admission Requirements include:

  • Bachelor’s degree or recognized equivalent from an accredited institution
  • Grade Point Average (G.P.A.) of 3.0 or better (on a 4-point scale) in the last two years of UNDERGRADUATE STUDY (also known as your advanced G.P.A.)
    • A G.P.A. of 3.0 or better (on a 4-point scale) in the last two years of UNDERGRADUATE STUDY is required
    • Please calculate (GPA Calculator) your advanced G.P.A.
    • For those applicants whose undergraduate university or college does NOT use a 4-point scale, the calculation of an advanced GPA is NOT required.
      • If this applies to you, please enter “N/A” in Advanced, Cumulative and Major G.P.A. boxes and enter your university’s GPA in the Other G.P.A. box.
  • Evidence of English Language Proficiency
    • All applicants from countries/regions in which the official language is not English are required to submit official evidence of English Language Proficiency).

Other elements of your application that weigh significantly in the review process are: 

  • Statement of Purpose (3 pages, double-spaced)
    • Please discuss why you want to study urban planning, why you want to study at UC Berkeley, and how our program can help you achieve your academic and professional goals. We encourage you to consider your responses to the questions below.
      • The Present: What brought you to pursue graduate study in urban planning? 
      • The Past: What academic and other experiences (including relevant professional work experience, internships and/or volunteer opportunities) or activities (research, co-curricular activities, leadership roles, etc.) bear on your qualifications for this graduate program? How do these experiences relate to your decision to study urban planning? 
      • The Future: What kinds of work and activities would you like to engage in following the completion of your graduate degree in planning, and what are your long-term career goals?
  • Personal History Statement (1-2 pages, double-spaced)
    • Please describe how your personal background informs your decision to pursue a graduate degree. 
    • The department may use the PHS provided for certain diversity-based fellowship consideration.
    • Your statement can include any educational, familial, cultural, economic or social experiences, challenges or opportunities relevant to your academic journey such as:
      • How you have overcome barriers to access in higher education;
      • Evidence of how you have come to understand the barriers faced by others;
      • Evidence of your academic service to advance equitable access to higher education for women, racial minorities, and individuals from other groups that have been historically underrepresented in higher education;
      • Evidence of your research focusing on underserved populations or related issues of inequality, or evidence of your leadership among such groups
      • To view additional tips please visit Writing the Personal Statement.
  • Letters of Recommendation (3 Required) 
    • The strongest letters are from individuals who have supervised your work in either an academic, employment (including professional work experience and/or internships) or community service capacity, and who can evaluate your intellectual ability, creativity, initiative, leadership potential, and promise for graduate study and in the field of urban planning.
    • In the Recommendations section of the application, for each individual you will:
      • Enter the recommender's contact information
      • Select your answer for the “access waiver” section 
      • Provide your signature
      • Click “send”
      • Thereafter, you should notify your recommenders that they will receive an email from our Graduate Admissions Office: The email’s subject will be “Recommendation request from [Your Name] for the University of California, Berkeley” and the body of the email will outline the steps to upload their recommendation letter to the application system.
    • You may submit your application BEFORE your recommendations are in the application system.
    • All letters are due by the application deadline.
    • If your recommenders have technical issues with uploading their letters to the application system, please contact DCRP Graduate Student Services.
  • For additional application information and tips, please review our M.C.P. Frequently Asked Questions.

Connect With Us 

Prospective applicants are encouraged to set up virtual meetings with the Graduate Advisors and/or with our faculty to discuss the program. We recommend that you schedule your meetings in advance with the Graduate Advisors by email and/or with faculty (refer to faculty directory to locate contact information). Please note that our faculty manage their own calendars so it is not possible for the Graduate Advisors to set up virtual meetings on behalf of applicants. Faculty are available for fall-semester appointments during the months of September, October and November, and for spring-semester appointments during the months of February, March and April.