Home > General History > The Ten Campuses > Berkeley >


Formatted version

Berkeley: Departments and Programs

African American Studies
There is no history currently available for this department.

Agricultural and Environmental Chemistry Program
There is no history currently available for this program.

Agricultural and Resource Economics Program
By the mid-1960s, the department's primary activities were research and undergraduate and graduate teaching in agricultural production, processing, marketing and distribution, economic determinants of supply and demand, natural resources development, and agricultural policy. In research and graduate teaching, activities were closely coordinated with the Gianinni Foundation.

First established as a division of the College of Agriculture on July 1, 1926, the department was the result of a merger of economic and social work which was offered in the Divisions of Farm Management, Rural Institutions, Agriculture, and in a small portion of Agricultural Education. The first effort in teaching was in farm management, an undergraduate course in 1909, followed by a graduate course three years later together with a course in agricultural history. The year 1915 saw a Division of Rural Institutions established, marking the first division concerned with work of a social and economic nature in the College of Agriculture.

After the merger of 1926, research, graduate, and undergraduate courses grew into a pattern of activity that still remained in the mid-1960s. Steady solid growth continued to an enrollment of 59 graduate and 92 undergraduate students in 1965. In both areas more substantial emphasis was placed on mathematics and economic theory as a base for empirical analysis. In the undergraduate work, agricultural business was increasingly stressed. Foreign graduates from developed as well as underdeveloped nations registered in large numbers. Staff members frequently were called to serve abroad. The staff (16) offered approximately 16 courses in each of the graduate and undergraduate areas of study, while research occupied the major part of the staff as a whole.

A statistical laboratory was maintained by the department and access to an even more complete computer center was available. The Giannini Foundation Library, which had one of the world's finest collections of publications and data relating to agricultural economics, was available to the staff and graduate students. source

Air Force (Reserve Officer Training Corps)
By the mid-1960s, the University's contribution to the development of military aviation in the United States spanned a period of 50 years. It began with the establishment of a School of Military Aeronautics in 1917, and was represented by the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps Program offered by the Department of Aerospace Studies.

The United States entered World War I with an Air Service consisting of less than 1,500 men, and training facilities were urgently needed to provide ground instruction to thousands of Air Service cadets before their entry into flight training schools. The University of California, along with Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cornell and Ohio State Universities, the Universities of Illinois and Texas, and later two others, responded with the establishment of United States Schools of Military Aeronautics in May of 1917. Classrooms, housing, teachers, and some equipment were furnished by the University, and the government provided military instructors, uniforms, and a tuition fee of $40 for the first four weeks and $5 per week thereafter. A specialized eight-week curriculum, later expanded to 12, included theory of flight, meteorology, principles of radio, aerial photography and tactics. These schools received almost 23,000 cadets and graduated over 17,500; the one at Berkeley had a peak enrollment of 1,500 and graduated some 2,000 before closure during the 1919-20 academic year.

The aeronautical schools were followed in 1920 by the introduction of the first Air Service ROTC Program at the Universities of California and Illinois, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Texas A & M University. The specialized course of instruction was essentially the same as that offered by the aeronautical schools and by 1926, aircraft engines, machine guns and even a mounted aircraft could be found on the Berkeley campus. The depression years, however, brought budgetary and other problems and the original Air Force ROTC Program was discontinued in 1932.

The United States Air Force became a separate service in 1947, and a new Air Force ROTC Program came to Berkeley on July 1, 1951, with the establishment of a Department of Air Science. After that time, the traditional four-year program underwent major improvements. Voluntary lower division enrollment was adopted in 1962 and together with a number of other changes, resulted in a 60 per cent reduction in Air Force officer faculty members and a 75 per cent annual increase in the number of cadet graduates by 1965. The ROTC Vitalization Act of 1964 brought the addition of a two-year program, scholarships and a modern generalized curriculum. This new version of Air Force ROTC was symbolically depicted in 1965 with a departmental name change to aerospace studies. This department, by the mid-1960s, was one of over 150 located at selected colleges and universities throughout the United States and together they were responsible for the military education of the majority of all new Air Force officers. source

American Cultures Program
There is no history currently available for this program.

American Studies Program
There is no history currently available for this program.

Ancient History and Mediterranean Archaeology Program
There is no history currently available for this program.

The Anthropology department was established by the Regents on September 10, 1901, and the first course, one in North American ethnology, was given in the spring semester of 1902 by Alfred L. Kroeber. An introductory course providing a general survey of anthropology, including physical anthropology, ethology, and archaeology, was introduced in 1905-06.

The teaching staff of the department increased slowly. By the time of the first World War, there were, in effect, two and a half teaching positions. Another was added in 1927 and still another ten years later. One more position was added in 1946 and one in 1948. After 1958 the department expanded explosively because of enrollment increases and growing demand for teachers of anthropology and for anthropologists willing to serve in development programs. The department had 24 teaching positions in 1964-65.

The first master's degree in anthropology was granted in 1904 and the first Ph.D. in 1908. A second Ph.D. was granted in 1911, but the third was not granted until 1926. After that date, graduate instruction was a major part of the department's activity, and it became one of the major suppliers of professional anthropologists in the country.

The Department of Anthropology grew out of Mrs. Phoebe Apperson Hearst's interest in establishing a program of anthropological research at the University, a program which began in 1899. Mrs. Hearst supported University archaeological expeditions in Egypt, Italy, and Peru and research on archaeology, ethnology, and native languages in California; she provided all funds for salaries, facilities, and research in the department until 1906, when support of anthropology was taken over by the Regents on a much reduced scale. Another outgrowth of Mrs. Hearst's program was the Robert H. Lowie Museum of Anthropology, which became one of the greatest anthropological museums in the country and constituted an important asset to the department's teaching program.

Under the leadership of the department's first chairman, Frederic Ward Putnam, an anthropology library was started, and Pliny Earle Goddard, the second instructor on the staff, was appointed librarian. The library remained small until it was reorganized in 1952. It became a branch of the general library in 1956 and by 1964 contained more than 16,000 volumes.

After functioning for over half a century in temporary quarters, the department, museum and library were housed permanently in a new building in 1959. The new building was named in honor of Kroeber, whose distinguished career in anthropology was almost entirely identified with the Berkeley department and museum.

The department always emphasized research, and particularly field research. It began a program of research publication in 1903, when the first number of the University of California Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology appeared. A second series, Anthropological Records, was established in 1937. After 1939, the work of the department was reported regularly in the Annual Report of the Robert H. Lowie Museum of Anthropology.

In 1948 a University of California Archaeological Survey was organized under the direction of R. F. Heizer to carry out research in the archaeology of California. The survey began publication of a series of reports in its first year of operation. In 1960 the survey was reorganized on a broader geographical basis as the Archaeological Research Facility of the department, serving all the department's archaeological programs. source

Applied Science and Technology Program
There is no history currently available for this program.

The origins of the Department of Architecture may be traced to 1894, when architect Bernard Maybeck was engaged to teach instrumental drawing and descriptive geometry in the Department of Instrumental Drawing and Engineering Design. Upon entering his teaching duties, Maybeck found a half-dozen or so engineering students whose interests were primarily in building design rather than in engineering structure and for their benefit he began an informal course in architecture which met in his own home. Maybeck played an important role in the events which led to the publication of the program prospectus for an International Competition for the Phoebe A. Hearst Architectural Plan for the University of California on December 3, 1897. The competition brought international attention and recognition to the University. The winner of the competition, M. Emile Bérnard of Paris, found himself unable to accept the position of supervising architect and John Galen Howard of New York City, one of the award-winning competitors, was appointed in his place and charged with the study and execution of the general campus development.

In his inaugural address of October 25, 1899, President Benjamin Ide Wheeler emphasized the need for professional training in architecture in the University and with the appointment of the supervising architect, Howard, asked that he establish a Department of Architecture. The department, with John Galen Howard as its first chairman, began in 1903 as an atelier of the office of the supervising architect of the University, but by 1905 a curriculum in architectural history and theory and work in engineering combined with a basic training in the liberal arts was formalized. In addition, Mrs. Hearst contributed a fine collection of architectural books which became the nucleus of the architectural library.

In 1906, a second staff member, architect William C. Hays, was added to serve the needs of an increasing number of students. In 1909, the first regular class of six students received their degrees following the curriculum instituted in 1905.

In 1913, a School of Architecture comprising the third and fourth years of departmental instruction and additional graduate studies was instituted. From the inception of the school, its director and the chairman of the department were the same person: John Galen Howard, from 1903 to 1927, and Warren C. Perry, from 1927 to 1950, when William W. Wurster assumed his duties.

A College of Architecture was formed in 1953 by administrative merger of the school and the Department of Architecture (a department of the College of Letters and Science). At this time, the curriculum took the direction of correlating the design professions of architecture, landscape architecture, and city and regional planning, which led to the formation of the College of Environmental Design in 1961 with Wurster as dean.

Dean Wurster retired in 1963. Under the chairmanship of Charles W. Moore, the department restudied its curriculum and a great deal of faculty and student activity and research took place in the areas of technology, the design process, and social effects of the physical environment. From a small informal department with a handful of students, the Department of Architecture grew to 800-900 undergraduate and approximately 30 graduate students, with a staff of 57 by the mid-1960s. source

Army (Reserve Officer Training Corps)
A military department was established at the University of California in 1870 under a provision of the Morrill Land Grant Act of 1862. The military instruction required of all undergraduate male students for four years was designed to provide trained military manpower in the event of a national emergency. Two hours per week of instruction consisted of tactics, dismounted drill, marksmanship, camp duty, military engineering, and fortifications. The original 200 male students were organized to form one battalion of four companies. In 1873, an armory was established in North Hall.

By the early 1900s, about 1,000 students, organized as a regiment of infantry with band and signal detachment, were receiving instruction in military science. The military department had moved to new offices and a new armory in the old Harmon Gymnasium. In 1904, the U.S. War Department and the Academic Council reduced the period of mandatory military training from four years to two years and the enrollment dropped to about 850 students. A rifle range was established in Strawberry Canyon and a horse-mounted detachment of about 15 students was temporarily established. It was also during this period that the objective of University military training shifted to the concept of providing commissioned and non-commissioned officers to command voluntary organizations in time of war. It also became possible for cadet officers who distinguished themselves to receive a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the Regular U.S. Army.

With the advent of World War I, the Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) was established, and in 1917 the University included this program in the standard curriculum. The cadet corps expanded to over 1,500 male students; they continued to be organized into one regiment of three battalions, but by the early 1920s there were 20 companies.

The concept of cadet summer training was developed and voluntary encampments for practical military instruction were established at such locations as Pacific Grove, California, and at the Presidio in San Francisco. During World War I, the U.S. Army also used the facilities of the University for special training programs such as the Signal Corps School of Military Aeronautics.

Prior to World War II, military science instruction was divided into branches based upon the organization of the U.S. Army. A four-year program was developed with instruction leading to a commission in the infantry, coast artillery, ordnance, signal, or engineer corps.

During World War II, the advanced phase of military science instruction was suspended, but once again the U.S. Army established a special program at the University to provide training in technical fields.

After World War II, the curriculum was expanded to include branch training leading to a commission in quartermaster, transportation, or military police corps. The corps of cadets numbered about 1,300.

In 1955, a branch immaterial course of military science instruction was again established, eliminating the branch training program. In 1962, mandatory military science instruction for lower division male students was suspended. During the period from 1962 until the mid-1960s, the voluntary ROTC program averaged about 425 cadets; they were organized into two battalions.

From its beginnings at the University, instruction in military science spanned advancements in military tactics from musketry and horse-mounted cavalry to nuclear weapons and counter-insurgency. About 4,500 U.S. Army commissions were awarded at the Berkeley campus. source

Art History
There is no history currently available for this department.

Art Practice
When the University opened in 1869, the Prospectus listed a course in free hand drawing required of all freshmen and juniors in the agricultural curriculum. Despite this early initiation into the University's course structure, it was not until 1923 that an autonomous Department of Art emerged. During the first half century, art subjects, usually some form of drawing, persistently appeared in the catalogues under the sponsorship of engineering, mining, mechanics, agriculture, or architecture. By 1897, 22 courses were offered, including a life class, carving, clay modeling, and some history courses, among them ancient art and historic ornament. By 1901, most of these had disappeared and drawing was again anchored firmly and practically to engineering design.

In the early years of this century, art courses appeared in the listings of the Department of Architecture. This had particular relevance to the Department of Art because of individual teachers who provided a direct line of descent. For example, in 1906, E. Earle Cummings was appointed instructor in sculpture. He served continuously until 1937 when he was succeeded by Jacques Schnier, who became the senior member of the sculpture wing of the department and was still serving the University in 1966. 1906 was also the year when Perham Nahl was appointed instructor in water color and pen and ink. Nahl served until his death in the mid-1930s.

With its establishment in the College of Letters and Science during the 1920s, two types of stress developed around the young department. There was a confrontation between those primarily concerned with conserving firmly settled values and those intrigued with the adventure of the search for the new. In addition, the faculty was uncertain whether this curious, unstable art activity belonged in a university, not to mention the College of Letters and Science. These issues were eventually resolved after a hard struggle due to the monumental work of two men, Worth Ryder and Stephen Pepper. Ryder conceived the curriculum that was still basically followed in practice instruction and was primarily responsible for the original appointments of at least six men who became senior members of the department. It was Pepper, professor of philosophy and chairman of the Department of Art (1938-52), who became its great champion within the University and who spoke eloquently to the nation about a balanced art program in higher education. The balance involved the three elements of studio practice, theory and criticism, and history of art. An ancillary great achievement of Pepper's was the acceptance of the creative artist as a member of the University faculty on equal footing with the scholar.

Curiously, the first fully trained art scholar in the department did not appear until 1938. This was Walter Horn, a distinguished medievalist. It was primarily due to the energy and imagination of Horn that a staff of art historians of nationally recognized excellence was formed. In addition he initiated and directed what became an excellent slide and photograph collection as well as a great art history library. The Ph.D. degree in the history of art was offered after 1948.

As the department evolved, the two divisions (studio practice and history) tended to develop ever higher standards in performance and scholarship. No longer did the same man give courses in painting and art history, which was done in the 1920s, 1930s, and into the 1950s. Studio practice absorbed sculpture from architecture in 1959; it was expanded to a faculty of five and had a major of its own. Painting and drawing had a staff of 12 artists, including six appointed since 1960. Some of the new faculty, by the mid-1960s, had ties to the tradition established by Ryder and Pepper and others did not. Six art historians were added since 1960. This broadened the scope of art history offerings. Faculty additions between 1960 and the mid-1960s numbered 14. source

Asian American Studies Program
There is no history currently available for this program.

Asian Studies Group
There is no history currently available for this program.

When the University began instruction, astronomy was a required course for all senior engineering students. A half-year elective course was offered to seniors in the College of Letters. The instructor was George Davidson, chief, Pacific Division, U. S. Coast and Geodetic Survey. In 1872, Frank Soulé, assistant professor of mathematics, was named professor of civil engineering and astronomy. In 1892, Soulé assigned the two courses (Practical Astronomy, prescribed in engineering, and Descriptive Astronomy, the elective) to Armin 0. Leuschner, then instructor in mathematics. Thereafter, Soulé confined his teaching to civil engineering, but held the "astronomy" part of his title until 1900.

In the early years, courses were taught by means of lectures, charts, and textbooks, with an occasional trip to the survey offices in San Francisco where Davidson demonstrated the use of instruments. The legislature appropriated $5,000 in 1882 for astronomical instruments, and in 1884 added $2,500 for a building in which to house them. The small Students' Observatory was completed in 1886. By 1926, there were seven buildings (of wood) on "observatory hill," containing classrooms, offices, three equatorial refracting telescopes (largest aperture--6 inches), one reflector, and three astronomical transits. The department moved to Campbell Hall in 1959. Construction of a new Leuschner Observatory (so named by the Regents in 1951) was completed in 1965. It was located ten miles east of the campus. This observatory housed two reflectors: one of 20-inch aperture; the other, 30-inch. Modern auxiliary equipment on these two telescopes provided faculty and graduate students with a greatly enhanced research facility.

After the acquisition of Lick Observatory in 1888, questions arose concerning the relationship between the two departments of astronomy. In 1896, the Regents determined that "The names of the two branches of general Astronomical Department of the University shall be, 'The Lick Astronomical Department,' which shall be at Mt. Hamilton, and the 'College Astronomical Department' which shall be at the seat of the University." Three years later, at the request of the Academic Council, the "College" department was renamed "The Berkeley Astronomical Department."

Leuschner, who joined the faculty as an instructor in mathematics in 1890, was appointed assistant professor of astronomy and geodesy in 1894; associate professor of astronomy and director of the Students' Observatory in 1898; and, in 1900, chairman of the department. He held the two latter titles until his retirement in 1938. Leuschner developed a new method of calculation of orbits. Through his initiative the observatory became a center for the computation of the orbits of comets, minor planets, and satellites. He had many collaborators, including members of the department and expert computers of the orbits of the Watson minor planets, a project of which he had charge.

The directors following Leuschner were: R. Tracy Crawford (1938-46), Sturla Einarsson (1946-50), Otto Struve (1950-59), Louis G. Henyey (1959-64), and John G. Phillips, who was appointed in 1964.

Impetus was given to graduate study in 1898 when a program leading to the doctorate in astronomy was established and when three fellowships were established at the Lick Observatory. The number of Ph.D. degrees awarded between 1898 and 1965 was 120; slightly over half had been Lick fellows.

The Radio Astronomy Laboratory, established in 1958 as a unit of the astronomy department, operated the Hat Creek Observatory in northern California. Radio telescopes, 33 and 85 feet in aperture, and a variety of receivers were available to faculty and graduate students for advanced research. Harold F. Weaver was the laboratory director in the mid-1960s.

Astronomy was a two-man department in 1898, a four-man department in 1910, and a five-man department in 1922. The following were members of the department from 1922 to 1938: Leuschner, Crawford, Einarsson, William F. Meyer, and C. Donald Shane. Robert J. Trumpler was appointed professor in 1938 and retired in 1951.

Astronomy was a ten-man department in 1964-65, with the following members: Henyey, Phillips, Weaver, Leland E. Cunningham, Ivan R. King, George Wallerstein, Eugene R. Capriotti, Paul W. Hodge, Charles R. O'Dell, and Hyron Spinrad.

In 1964-65, there were enrolled in the department 189 students in four sections of Astronomy I; there were 65 undergraduate majors and 45 graduate students enrolled in the department. Ten undergraduate courses were taught by members of the department. source

Copyright © 1999-2005
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.
Last updated 06/18/04.