An administrative unit composed of budgeted faculty (FTE) offering instruction in a titled, specialized discipline, and normally affiliated with a school or college. A department has an established budget for instruction. At Berkeley, there have been two notable exceptions of departments without a school or college affiliation – City and Regional Planning (from 1948-1959) and Ethnic Studies (from 1970-1995).

Nearly all of Berkeley's departments organized under a college structure offer curricula leading to academic degrees at the master's and/or doctoral levels, while only a few offer graduate professional degrees3. Department (and school) faculties initiate recruitment and promotion actions for their respective units.