Major Qualification

Qualifying for the Major

Below is the Major Qualification Policy for the Catalog Year 2019-20. Incoming transfer students have catalog rights to two years before beginning at UCSC, but there have been no changes to the qualification policy since 2017-18. Admitted transfer students from California Community Colleges have automatically met the BIOL 20L (lab) requirement. If needed, review the 2016-17 catalog year qualification policy here.

 

To qualify for a Molecular, Cell, & Developmental BS, Neuroscience BS, or Biology BS major (Human Biology BS is below), students must complete the following six qualification courses, or their equivalents, with a grade of C (2.0) or better. These courses must be completed prior to submitting a declaration petition (see note below about exception to this policy that is made during Spring Quarter - or your 6th quarter - to help students meet their declaration deadline):

To qualify for any of the majors, students must pass (with a grade of C or better) the following courses or their equivalents:

  • Chemistry 1A, General Chemistry
  • Chemistry 1B, General Chemistry
  • Chemistry 1C, General Chemistry
  • Biology (BIOL) 20A, Cell and Molecular  Biology
  • Biology: (BIOE) 20B, Development and Physiology
  • Biology: (BIOL) 20L, Introductory Biology Laboratory*

*Starting for freshmen entering in Fall 2017

All qualification courses must be completed by the campus major declaration deadline. 

NOTE:  An exception to this policy is made during Spring Quarter - or your 6th quarter - to help students meet their declaration deadline.  During Spring Quarter - or your 6th quarter - ONLY, you may submit your petition to declare while enrolled in your last qualification course(s).  Major declaration petitions will be held until the end of the quarter to verify that the qualification criteria has been met.

Students with two or more grades of NP, C-, D+, D, D-, or F in the policy courses are not qualified to declare.

When assessing qualification:

  • All courses must be taken for a letter grade, see Letter Grade Policy.
  • Students with AP credit for Biology: Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology (BIOL) 20A, Biology: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (BIOE) 20B, and/or Chemistry and Biochemistry 1A, need only pass the remaining qualification policy courses.
  • Every student who satisfies the major qualification requirements and who petitions to declare the major by the campus major declaration deadline (i.e., before enrolling in their 3rd year or the equivalent) will be admitted to the major. Students enrolled in their final qualification policy course at the major declaration deadline may submit the petition, but will not be declared until satisfactory grades have been posted. Students who satisfy the major admission requirements, but who petition to declare the major after the campus major declaration deadline will be considered on a case-by-case basis for admission to the major; admission is not guaranteed.

To qualify for a Human BS Major, students must complete the following six qualification courses or their equivalents (with a grade of C+ or better). These courses must be completed prior to submitting a declaration petition (see note below about exception to this policy that is made during Spring Quarter - or your 6th quarter - to help students meet their declaration deadline):

  • Chemistry and Biochemistry 1A, General Chemistry
  • Chemistry and Biochemistry 1B, General Chemistry
  • Chemistry and Biochemistry 1C, General Chemistry
  • Biology: Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology (BIOL) 20A, Cell and Molecular Biology
  • Biology: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (BIOE) 20B, Development and Physiology
  • Biology:Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology (BIOL) 20L, Introductory Biology Laboratory*

*Starting for freshmen entering in Fall 2017


All qualification courses must be completed by the campus major declaration deadline. 

NOTE:  An exception to this policy is made during Spring Quarter - or your 6th quarter - to help students meet their declaration deadline.  During Spring Quarter - or your 6th quarter - ONLY, you may submit your petition to declare while enrolled in your last qualification course(s).  Major declaration petitions will be held until the end of the quarter to verify that the qualification criteria has been met.

Students with two or more grades of NP, C-, D+, D, D-, or F in the policy courses are not qualified to declare.

When assessing qualification:

  • All courses must be taken for a letter grade, see Letter Grade Policy.
  • Students with AP credit for Biology: Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology (BIOL) 20A, Biology: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (BIOE) 20B, and/or Chemistry and Biochemistry 1A need only pass the remaining qualification policy courses.
  • Students with non-grades (I, IP, DG, etc.) in any of the policy courses will not be eligible to declare until a grade has been assigned.
  • Every student who satisfies the major qualification requirements and who petitions to declare the major by the campus major declaration deadline (i.e. before enrolling in their 3rd year or the equivalent) will be admitted to the major. Students enrolled in their final qualification policy course at the major declaration deadline may submit the petition, but will not be declared until satisfactory grades have been posted. Students who satisfy the major admission requirements, but who petition to declare the major after the campus major declaration deadline will be considered on a case-by-case basis for admission to the major; admission is not guaranteed.

 

APPEALING: Students who are informed that they are not eligible to declare the major may appeal this decision by submitting a letter to the Molecular Cell and Developmental Biology Faculty Adviser within 15 days from the date the notification was mailed. Within 15 days of receipt of the appeal, the department will notify the student and their college of the decision.

For more information about the appeal process, see our Appeal Process page.