Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology BS

Major Requirements

View the printable major checklist (PDF) for the current academic year.
Click here to see checklists from previous years. 

Letter Grade Policy:  ALL courses for the major MUST be taken for a letter grade.  Only courses with grades of C (2.0) or better can be used to fulfill major requirements.  Courses in which you receive a grade of C-, D+, D, D- or F cannot be used to satisfy a major requirement or satisfy a prerequisite for another course.

Qualification Policy:  You must meet qualification policy criteria to be eligible to declare this major.


Calculus:  MATH 11A + 11B OR MATH 19A + 19B

Chemistry:  CHEM 1A + 1B + 1C/N

Biology:  BIOL 20A + BIOE 20B + BIOE 20C + BIOL 20L

Organic Chemistry:  CHEM 8A/L + 8B

Statistics: STAT 5 OR 7/L

Physics:  PHYS 6A/L + 6B OR PHYS 6A/L + 6C OR Phys 7A + 7B + 6L* 
*Concurrent enrollment with PHYS 6L required
Note: PHYS 7A/B and 6L will not satisfy prerequisites for admission to most medical schools 


Biochemistry & Molecular Biology:  BIOL 100 + BIOL 101 OR BIOC 100A + BIOC 100B + BIOC 100C 

Note: Students who complete the BIOC 100ABC sequence can use BIOC 100C to satisfy one upper-division elective.

Molecular Biology or Toxic RNA Lab: BIOL 101L OR 102L

Genetics:  BIOL 105

Cell Biology:  BIOL 110

Electives:  THREE upper-division elective courses (only one of which may be a 3-unit course: BIOL 112, 116 or 117)
BIOL 111A Immunology I
BIOL 111B Immunology II
BIOL 112 Virology 
BIOL 114 Cancer Cell Biology
BIOL 115 Eukaryotic Molecular Biology
BIOL 116 Advanced Topics in Cell Biology 
BIOL 117 Global Health and Neglected Diseases 
BIOL 120 Developmental Biology
BIOL 125 Introduction to Neuroscience
BIOL 126 Advanced Molecular Neuroscience
BIOL 127 Mechanisms of Neurodegenerative Disease
BIOL 128 Developmental Neurobiology
BIOL 130/L Human Physiology & Lab (lab optional)
BIOL 140 The RNA World
BIOC 100C Biochemistry
BIOE 109 Evolution
BIOE 135/L Plant Physiology & Lab
BME 110 Computational Biology Tools
BME 130 Genomes
BME 160/L Programming for Biologists & Biochemists/Lab
BME 178 Stem Cell Biology
METX 119 Microbiology
PHYS 180 Biophysics

Laboratory:  ONE from the following:
BIOL 100L Biochemistry Lab
BIOL 103L Toxic RNA Lab II
BIOL 105L Eukaryotic Genetics Lab
BIOL 109L Yeast Molecular Genetics Lab
BIOL 115L Eukaryotic Molecular Biology Lab
BIOL 120L Development Lab
BIOL 121L Environmental Phage Biology Lab
BIOL 186L Undergraduate Research in MCD Biology
METX 119L Microbiology Lab

Students satisfy this requirement by successfully completing the laboratory elective. (NOTE: This requirement MUST be completed at UCSC.)

Students satisfy this requirement by successfully completing the laboratory elective.