Degree Programs

The Department of Mechanical Engineering offers several Graduate degree programs. Students have the option to apply for the M.S., M.Eng, M.S./Ph.D., Ph.D. or the D.Eng at the time of application. (Please note that our doctorate students are primarily admitted to the Ph.D. Program rather than the D.Eng.).


Many students ask what the difference is between applying for the M.S. and the M.S./Ph.D. The answer to this question is that if you are admitted to the M.S. degree, it is a terminal degree. If a student finds that s/he wants to go on for the Ph.D. after completing the M.S., they would need to petition to add the degree and the petition is not guaranteed to be approved. The M.S./Ph.D. is a continuous program in which a student, after having completed the degree requirements, can earn the M.S. and automatically move forward to the Ph.D. For further clarification on this question, please see our Degree Chart.


Another common question is whether an applicant should apply for the M.S. or the M.S./Ph.D. This is completely up to you. The majority of our applicants apply for the M.S./Ph.D. if they do not already have an Masters degree, but we do not have a requirement for the Masters to be eligible for the Ph.D. Please note that though we have Masters Program options, because we are primarily a research institution, the majority of our current students, and likely our future admits, are and will be on the Ph.D. track.


Regarding the plan options for the Masters of Science, one would choose that during their time at UC Berkeley, if admitted. It is not something that is chosen at the time of application. Most students choose Plan II.


Applicants also have the option of applying to the established concurrent degree program Public Policy (M.P.P.) - Mechanical Engineering (M.S.).


Distance Learning

We do not offer evening or distance learning degree programs at this time. All our degree programs are full-time day programs with the exception of the part-time option for our M.Eng program. Online courses and certificate programs are offered through UC Extension.