Public Policy

University of California, Berkeley

About the Program


The undergraduate minor in Public Policy introduces students from other departments and colleges to the field and practice of policy analysis. Employers and graduate schools recognize a completed minor as indicative of broader preparation than a single degree, not to mention curiosity and willingness to do extra work. The Public Policy minor also certifies interest and background in public affairs.

Over the years, the department has realized that the underlying model of policy analysis enriches and complements a variety of undergraduate specializations and that public policy training can be valuable not only as a “pre-MPP” experience but also to students whose graduate training won’t include the Masters in Public Policy degree. Lawyers, doctors, engineers, entrepreneurs, and others need to understand government choices as citizens, as participants in government, and on behalf of their organizations, many of which are profoundly affected by public policy.

Registration for the minor (which does not obligate one to complete it) makes students eligible for various Goldman School of Public Policy (GSPP) undergraduate programs and activities and gets them on a mailing list for GSPP events of interest to anyone concerned with public affairs.

Course of Study Overview

The undergraduate courses in public policy deal with the substance of public policy, how it is made, how its effects can be gauged, and what the purposes of policy should be. The courses consider both the policy process and particular policy issues. By examining different policy problems in their political and social contexts, students gain a greater sensitivity to the forces which shape and carry out public policies and to the impact of social, political, economic, and legal power.

Courses are designed for students in diverse disciplines and professional schools. There are no prerequisites for enrollment in the undergraduate courses unless specifically noted otherwise in the course descriptions. The training provided by the courses is useful to those interested in combining the substantive perspectives of the social sciences with the immediacy of contemporary problems, to those considering professional study, and to the informed and politically aware citizen.

Declaring the Minor

All UC Berkeley undergraduate students are eligible for enrollment in the Public Policy minor. Students should complete the Minor Enrollment Form as early in their academic career as possible. Declaration of the Public Policy minor is possible even before enrolling in public policy courses.

Please note that early declaration of the minor does not obligate students to this program should it become unfeasible later in their academic pursuits.

All Public Policy minor students must complete a Completion of Public Policy Minor form the semester they are scheduled to graduate in order to receive credit for the minor. The minor will not be listed on the diploma. Students who complete the requirements for the Public Policy Minor will receive a certificate of completion. Within six weeks after receiving the certificate, a notation will appear at the bottom of the transcript that will state "Minor Program in Public Policy Completed" with the semester and year.

Visit School Website

Minor Requirements

Students who have a strong interest in an area of study outside their major often decide to complete a minor program. These programs have set requirements.

General Guidelines

  1. All courses used to fulfill minor requirements must be completed with a grade of C- or higher, and must be at least 3 units each.
  2. All courses must be taken for a letter grade, except PUB POL 199, and PUB POL 98/PUB POL 198, both of which are offered on a Pass/No Pass basis only.
  3. A limit of two, PP 98/198 (DeCal) courses equaling a total of 3 or 4 units may count as one course towards the minor; only one of these can be PP 98.  Exception: If a PP 198 is offered for 3 or 4 units, it will count as one full course.
  4. Students may count graduate level public policy electives to complete their minor requirements. Generally, undergraduates require an instructor consent form to enroll in graduate courses.
  5. No more than two non-public policy courses may be used to fulfill minor requirements.


PUB POL 101Introduction to Public Policy Analysis4
Select four from the following (of which two must be PUB POL courses):
Using Economics for Public Policy [4]
Public Economics [4]
American Foreign Policy [4]
The Supreme Court and Public Policy [4]
Freedom of Speech and the Press [3]
Health Economics and Public Policy [3]
Introduction to Health Policy and Management [3]
Poverty and Population [3]
Special Topics in American Politics [4]
Special Topics in American Politics [4]
Special Topics in American Politics [4]
Special Topics in American Politics [4]
Special Topics in American Politics [4]
Special Topics in American Politics [4]
Special Topics in American Politics [4]
Selected Topics in American Politics-UCDC [4]
South Asian Politics [4]
The American Legal System [4]
Public Organization and Administration [4]
Public Problems [4]
Wealth and Poverty [4]
Negotiations [3]
Race, Ethnicity, and Public Policy [4]
Behavioral Economics for Public Policy [3]
Applied Econometrics and Public Policy [4]
Introduction to Security Policy [4]
Program and Policy Design [4]
Arts and Cultural Policy [4]
Arts and Cultural Policy [4]
Work, Justice and the Labor Movement [4]
Field Study in Labor Organizing [3]
Political Psychology and Involvement [4]
Impact of Government Policies on Poor Children and Families [4]
Poverty, Inequality, and Public Policy [4]
Course Not Available [4]
Course Not Available [4]
Energy and Society [4]
Energy and Society [4]
Social Science & Crime Prevention Policy [3]
Special Topics in Public Policy [1-4] 1
Social Movements, Organizing & Policy Change [3]
Directed Group Study [1-4]
Supervised Independent Study and Research [1-4]
Social Welfare Policy [3]
PUB POL 187Energy Regulation and Public Policy3
PUB POL 132Global Challenges3
PUB POL C199CBerkeley Changemaker: Labor Research for Action and Policy (L-RAP)1
PUB POL 103Wealth and Poverty4
PUB POL C164ABerkeley Changemaker: Labor Research for Action and Policy (L-RAP)4
ECON 172Case Studies in Economic Development4

Students may count an unlimited number of PUB POL 190 courses toward the minor, provided that the topic is not repeated.


Public Policy

Contact Information

Goldman School of Public Policy

2607 Hearst Ave

Phone: 510-642-4670

Fax: 510-643-9657

Visit School Website


David C. Wilson

Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs

Annie Campbell Washington

Phone: 510-642-6318

Undergraduate Minor Advisor

Jalilah LaBrie

Phone: 510-642-1940

Minor Program Chair

Steven Raphael, PhD

343 GSSP Addition

Phone: 510-643-0536

Undergraduate Minor Advisor, Scheduler and Curriculum Planner

Kathryn Wickham

Back to Top