5.1 Master of Science Degree Requirements (Plan II)

This Plan is common Masters degree plan in our department; very rarely do students choose to complete Plan I. The primary differences between Plan II and Plan I is Plan II requires 24 units (see below for details) and an Oral Presentation and Report, while Plan I requires 20 units and a Thesis (see Section 5.2 for details).


5.1.1 - Normative Time

1.5 years or 3 semesters


5.1.2 - Minimum Number Of Units To Complete Degree

24 Semester Units

Course Restriction: Must be either in 200 series or 100 elective upper division series. At most, one third of the total units of course work may be taken S/U


5.1.3 - Minimum Number Of Mechanical Engineering Units

12 Semester Units (must be in 200 series and letter-graded with the exception of the optional 4 units of ME 299 that can be included in the 12)


5.1.4 - Minimum Units To Be Registered Each Semester

As a graduate student in ME, each student must enroll in 15 Semester units each semester.


5.1.5 - Maximum Amount Of Independent Study Units (298, 299, 300 And Above)

The semester enrollment restrictions for independent study courses are as follows:

- 298s: 8 units

- 299s: 12 units

- 300s: 6 units


Please note that only 4 Semester units of 299 can be counted towards the 24 unit total requirement. 


5.1.6 - Minimum Required Number Of Units In Major Field Area (E.g. Bioeng, Controls, Etc.)

12 Semester units from 200 or 100 upper division series


5.1.7 - Maximum Number Of Units You Can Transfer Towards Your Masters Degree

A master's student may transfer up to 4 semester units or 6 quarter units of course work completed as a graduate student at another institution. The units must be equivalent to courses in the student's graduate program at Berkeley, and the student must have received at least a B in the course(s) and have a grade-point average of at least 3.3 at both Berkeley and the other institution. However, students cannot use units from another institution to satisfy the minimum unit requirement in 200 series courses or the minimum academic residence requirement. In addition, they may not present course work previously used to satisfy requirements for another degree program at Berkeley or at another institution. 

Berkeley undergraduates who take graduate course work during their last undergraduate semester may petition to backdate graduate standing in order to receive graduate credit for that course work. Graduate standing may be backdated from the last semester, and students may petition for credit only for the course work that was not required for the undergraduate degree. 

All petitions to have units transferred must be first approved by the Vice-Chair for Graduate Study, then forwarded to Graduate Division. Detailed restrictions can be found in Graduate Division's Guide to Graduate Policy.


5.1.8 - Advancement To Candidacy

Before you can receive a Master's degree, you must first be Advanced to Candidacy. The opportunity for this occurs during the first four (4) weeks of each semester. By Academic Senate regulation, a minimum period of study of one term must intervene between formal advancement to candidacy and the conferring of the master's degree. 


Please complete the Application for Candidacy for Master's Degree Form and bring it to 6189 Etcheverry Hall for processing. 


5.1.9 - Filing Your Master's Report (Plan II)

After you have written your report, formatted it correctly, assembled the pages into the correct organization, and obtained your signatures, you are ready to file your report (Plan II). The steps are as follows:


  1. Convert your report to a standard PDF file. 
  2. Complete, sign, and convert the Library Permission Form to a standard PDF file. Each student filing a master's report must also submit a completed library permission form, stating whether or not the student is willing to allow the University Library to supply copies of the report to any interested persons immediately, or if permission to do so should be withheld (for up to two years) while the student applies to obtain copyright.
  3. Log on your account on the College of Engineering Student Progress Summary Database webpage.
  4. Under "Document Type", select "Library Permission".
  5. Under "Upload File", click on "Choose file" to browse and navigate through your computer to locate and select your signed library permission form. You should see your file name displayed near the menu "Choose File".
  6. Click on "submit" at the bottom of your summary page. Once your file is successfully uploaded, you will see it on the page.
  7. Repeat the same procedure to upload your Master's Report.


Note: DO NOT SUBMIT A DRAFT. Once your report has been submitted, you will not be allowed to make changes. Be sure that it is in its final form and the coverpage is signed by the committee members!


Please note that all documents should be submitted together (e.g. Signed Report and the signed Library Permission Form. The Graduate Student Services Office will not accept lone signature pages!) You must submit your electronic report before 4:00 P.M. on the indicated deadline date listed on the Graduate Division's website.


5.1.10 - Oral Presentation And Final Report (Plan II)

An oral presentation and a written report are required. 2 Faculty are required to be present. At least one needs to be from the MS Committee. All committee members are required to be members of the Berkeley Division of the Academic Senate. - Degree Committee Members

Two committee members are needed for the report:

  • Your Research Advisor
  • ME Professor or Professor outside the ME department
  • At least one committee members must be from ME
  • Both members must also be members of the Berkeley Division of the Academic Senate