GSPP offers a doctoral degree program for students who seek policy research careers in academia and/or with governments, non-profits, or research institutes. The Ph.D. program emphasizes the generation of knowledge, theories, methodologies, and applications appropriate to the advancement of public policy analysis and management. Doctoral students pursue highly individualized programs of study and typically work closely with Goldman faculty members who share the student’s subject matter interest. A thorough preparation in policy analysis skills is a prerequisite for the doctorate. Because there is no core program of study, the Ph.D. committee prefers applicants to have completed an MPP or equivalent, either from GSPP or a similar institution. Applicants with a master’s degree in some other field usually must complete the MPP program at GSPP before applying for admission to the doctoral program. Applicants who have a master’s degree in public policy from another school may be partially exempt from this requirement but may be asked to take certain first-year master’s level courses at GSPP not offered in other such programs.
Typically, only two or three Ph.D. applicants are admitted each year, including those admitted from among GSPP current MPP students.
UPDATE DECEMBER 4, 2018: The Fall 2019 application is closed. If you have questions about your Fall 2019 application please contact Cecille Cabacungan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Applications are submitted through the Online Graduate Application.
Application information is also available from the Goldman School Program Bulletin (pdf).
Before starting your online application, please review the following application checklist and instructions specific to applicants to the Goldman School Ph.D. Program.
The Online Application for the Goldman School Ph.D. Program
The following documents listed below are required for admission to the Ph.D. Program and must be submitted with the online application:
|Statement of Purpose||
Please follow the instructions below for the statement of purpose. These instructions supersede those listed in the online application.
Address these areas in 3-5 double-spaced pages:
1). The present: Why do you want to pursue a Ph.D. in public policy?;
2). The past: What experiences or activities bear on your qualifications for this program, e.g., academic research, teaching, professional experience, etc? How do these experiences relate to your decision to undertake a Ph.D. in public policy?; and
3). The future: What are your short- and long-term career objectives?
|Personal History Statement||Please describe how your personal background informs your decision to pursue a Ph.D in Public Policy. There is no page length requirement, however this essay is generally 1-2 pages, double-spaced.|
|Faculty Advisor Preferences||In the on-line application you will be asked to select 3 preferences for a faculty advisor if you are admitted to the Goldman School Ph.D. program. Please note that the assignment of faculty advisors is not guaranteed and based on the availability of each faculty member. For a list of available Goldman School faculty, click here.|
|Planned Dissertation Research Memo||A description of the applicant's public policy research interests, outline of proposed dissertation research topic(s), and preferences for possible faculty advisor(s). This memo should ideally be 3-5 pages, but no more than 7 pages, double-spaced.|
|Curriculum Vitae (CV)||Upload a current C.V. reflecting your academic and professional work experience, as well as research, publications, education, and any other relevant information.|
|Writing Sample||A research paper under 30 pages, different from a “policy analysis” paper. Its purpose is to make it evident that the student can make the transition from policy analysis to policy research.|
|Transcripts||Scan and upload a copy of unofficial transcripts from all universities or colleges attended to the online application. Official transcripts will only be requested if admitted.|
|Letters of Recommendation||3 Letters of recommendation should be submitted with the online graduate application. Letters may arrive up to 14 days after the application deadline. Please refer to the online application for further instructions on submitting letters of recommendation.|
GRE scores dated before August 2013 are no longer valid. To meet the application deadline, you should take the GRE no later than early November 2018. To send an official score to UC Berkeley, list the institution code assigned by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) for UC Berkeley (4833) at the time of registration. Reservations for the GRE exam should be made in advance through: The Education Testing Service (ETS), P.O. Box 6000, Princeton, NJ 08541-6000, Phone: (609) 771-7670 or 1-800-GRE-CALL; Website: http:// www.ets.org/gre
|TOEFL Scores||In addition to GRE scores, all international applicants are required to take the TOEFL exam. Scores are valid for 2 years. To send an official score to UC Berkeley, list the institution code assigned by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) for UC Berkeley (4833) at the time of registration. You may sign up for the TOEFL through an agent in your country or through: TOEFL, CN6151, Princeton, NJ 08541-6151, Phone: (609) 771-7500; Website: http://www.ets.org/toefl|
The application fee must be submitted with the online application and is not refundable. If you are a U.S. Citizen or current Permanent Resident, the application fee is $105; for all others, the fee is $125.
Application Fee Waiver: You must be a U.S. citizen or current permanent resident to request a graduate admissions application fee waiver. Read more about the application fee waiver.
Please do not submit additional or supplemental materials.
Questions About the Online Application?
If a student is admitted to the Ph.D. Program, he/she is required to work with their designated faculty advisor to develop and submit a curriculum memo to the Ph.D. committee that contains the courses the student will take during the first two years of study. This curriculum memo can be updated at the end of each semester of Ph.D. residency should the student and his/her advisor decide that additional courses should be taken or substituted.
Please contact Cecille Cabacungan, Managing Director of Career & Alumni Services and Ph.D. Admissions & Student Affairs Advisor at (510) 642-1303 or email@example.com regarding questions about the Ph.D. Program and application process.
GSPP has limited funds to provide toward first-year fellowships. This is negotiated on an individual basis, and funding can vary from year to year.
Graduate Student Instructors
In addition, there are many opportunities for Ph.D. students to be graduate student instructors at GSPP and other social science departments. These appointments typically provide a fee remission and a monthly salary.
There are many opportunities on campus for GSPP Ph.D. students to engage in research (in many cases, paid research). For example, research opportunities typically exist in campus departments including the Berkeley Institute of the Environment, the Energy and Resources Group, the U.C. Berkeley Labor Center the Global Policy Lab, and the California Policy Lab.