The PhD is the advanced research degree in urban planning or urban studies and is focused on training individuals for research and teaching in the areas of applied social research and planning.
The program emphasizes the development of fundamental research competence, flexibility in the design of special area of study, and encouragement of joint student/faculty research and teaching. The program is tailored to the needs of individual students, each of whom works closely with a mentor in the Department. A standard program involves four semesters of classes (with a minimum of 36 units each semester) and four semesters to complete a dissertation.
Admission requirements are essentially the same as for the master’s degree, but additional emphasis is placed on academic preparation, professional experience, and the fit between the student’s research interests and the department’s research activities. Nearly all successful applicants have previously completed a master’s degree. Admission to the doctoral program is highly competitive. Each year we accept 10-12 doctoral candidates from an applicant pool of approximately 125. Each program group admits its own students, who are only admitted if their interests match that of a faculty member. The Department seeks to balance the number of doctoral candidates among these groups.
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