How to Register

The first step toward registering for classes is to find out when your registration appointment is. You should check it in CalCentral under the "My Academics" tab.

You should have two appointments. During Phase I, you can register for up to 12 credits (and as a graduate student, you have no need to carry more than that). To register for more than 12 credits, or modify your class schedule further, you will have to wait until Phase II begins.

In order to register for classes in CalCentral, go to the "My Academics" tab and find the "Class Enrollment" panel on the right. Select the Schedule Planner to search the schedule of classes and find the course number for classes you want to take. You can also use Berkeleytime, a free site to help plan your course schedule. To enroll in classes, select "Choose Classes" and either type in the five digit course number or select the search option to find the course you want to take. The courses will appear in your "Enrollment Shopping Cart." To enroll, select the courses in your shopping cart and press the "enroll" option, and then select "Finish Enrolling" in the following window.

What to Take

All graduate students must be registered by the end of the third week of classes each semester. In addition, Graduate Council requires that students not yet advanced to doctoral candidacy be registered and enrolled in at least 12 units. Students with fellowships and/or academic appointments jeopardize their awards and work status if they are out of compliance.

According to the Graduate Student Handbook, registration requirements are listed below:

Every semester:

  • Department colloquium (1 unit)
  • Seminar with adviser(s) (1 unit)
  • Research with adviser(s) (variable up to 12 units)

For semester in which it occurs:

  • GSI credit (2 units)
  • Qualifying exam credit--with committee chair (2 units)

Course Requirements

Students wishing to obtain a Ph.D. from the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering must complete the following requirements before graduation: (Most updated requirements in the Graduate Student Handbook.)

Chemical Engineering Core Courses

A minimum of nine (9) units of the chemical engineering core classes must be completed. They are typically taken during the first semester of graduate study. They are:

  • ChE 230 - Analytical mathematics (may not be offered every fall)
  • CBE 240 - Thermodynamics
  • CBE 244 - Kinetics and Reaction Engineering
  • CBE 250 - Transport Processes
  • CBE 274 - Biomolecular Engineering

Elective Courses

A total of nine (9) elective credits must be taken, which must be graduate level or upper division. These credits can be taken outside of the department of chemical engineering but should be relevant to your field of study.


During Fall and Spring semesters, you must register for this class (CCNs change every semester), which is the Wednesday afternoon Colloquium. (It is also important for the reputation of the Department that you actually go to Colloquium, and that, if it is humanly possible to do so, you try to stay awake.)

Research Group Meeting

During Fall and Spring semesters, you must register for your research group's group meetings. These are listed as CBE 298-XXX, where XXX is unique for each advisor. The actual course control numbers for group meetings change every semester; the Graduate Student Affairs Officer will email out the course numbers for the coming semester sometime before registration begins.


A full time course load for graduate students is 12 credits. You may take up to 12 credits in research each semester. Research is listed as CBE 299-XXX, where XXX is unique for each advisor. As with group meeting, the course numbers for research will be emailed sometime before registration each term.


If you are GSI-ing, you must register for the section of CBE 300 that corresponds with the course you are teaching. In addition, if you are teaching for the first time, you must take the Department's Teaching Pedagogy class.