Requirements and Electives

To balance out your science courses, you still need to include some elective courses each quarter, non-science courses, internships, or research experiences. You will also need to complete the upper-division English composition requirement as IGETC does not satisfy this requirement. The upper-division English composition requirement can be fulfilled by any UWP course from the 101, 102 or 104 series.

Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC) vs. General Education (GE 3 Version)

The Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC) is the California Community College equivalent of UCD's General Education (GE 3) requirement. Both the IGETC and the GE 3 requirement are a pattern of courses that include social science, arts and humanities, English composition and science. Their purpose is to provide breadth to every student's program. Students from 4-year or out-of-state institutions are required to complete GE 3 at UCD. Some of the courses you have taken may match GE 3 category courses. If you completed your GE at another UC, a letter of reciprocity will be needed to satisfy GE 3. View the Request for Reciprocity Verification on our Forms and Petitions page.

If you have completed your entire IGETC

Your GE 3 requirement at UCD is fulfilled if you have completed all of your IGETC course requirements and a fully certified copy of your IGETC completion is in your file at Undergraduate Admissions Office. We cannot acknowledge completion of your general education requirements until we receive your community college's certification. During Fall quarter, your IGETC verifications should be sent to UCD's Undergraduate Admissions Office. After Fall quarter, your IGETC certifications should be sent to the Biology Academic Success Center. You will want to check at the end of Fall to make sure the college has received your IGETC certification.

If you have completed a Partial IGETC

Students must be within two (2) courses of completing the IGETC to be eligible for the partial certification. You are responsible for requesting a partial IGETC certification form be sent to the Undergraduate Admissions Office from the community college you attended. Along with your BASC adviser you will determine the applicable course(s) that can be completed to meet the deficiency. Students have one academic year at UCD to complete the required course(s) and also have the option to return to the community college during the next summer to complete the missing courses. Once completed, you will be notified by your BASC adviser.

If your IGETC is not complete or you went to a 4-year or out-of-state institution

You are required to complete the UC Davis General Education (GE 3) requirement. GE courses are listed in the Class Search Tool. If you are not searching by specific GE course type be sure to read your results carefully as both GE 2 and GE 3 are listed. Some of your transferrable courses may match GE 3 category courses. Check on Assist to see if a course you took at a California Community College could be used to satisfy a part of GE 3’s requirement. The course must be equivalent to a GE 3 course on our campus to qualify. GE courses are designated on Assist by the letters GE under the UC Davis course. If you attended a four-year and/or out-of-state institution, and you did not attend orientation, your courses will need to be evaluated by the Biology Academic Success Center, for GE equivalency. You will need a catalog description and a syllabus of the course for the evaluation of equivalency.

REMINDERS: To balance out your science courses, you still need to include some elective courses each quarter, non-science courses, internships, or research experiences. You will also still need to complete the English composition upper division requirement as IGETC does not satisfy this requirement.

The English Composition Requirement

Every student needs to complete 8 units of English composition, of which 4 units must be upper division.

Courses that satisfy the lower division unit requirement are listed below. You may have taken an equivalent to one of these courses. California Community College students can check Assist for equivalency. Other students need to see their academic adviser in the BASC:

  • Comparative Literature 1, 2, 3, 4
  • English 3
  • Native American Studies 5
  • University Writing Program 1, 18 or 19

You will also need to complete one upper division course from the options listed below. These courses do not have a community college equivalent.

  • University Writing Program (UWP) 101 or 102 (any in the series) or 104 (any in the series)

The Foreign Language Requirement

There is no foreign language requirement for students completing a Bachelor of Science. Bachelor of Arts students should see their academic adviser in BASC to discuss this requirement.

Elective Courses Are Important

Whether you have taken many or few electives at your former institution, the following will give you some additional ideas of electives that are pertinent to your future. Not all of these are given every quarter.

Courses are listed by a three-letter identifier code. This code is used in the Class Search Tool, on your Schedule Builder, and also at the start of each department's course listing in the catalog. Make sure you have completed the prerequisites listed in the course catalog for any course you wish to take.

Other options:

  • Find an internship (192) or research (199) opportunity. Visit the Internship and Career Center or ask your professors to find out what opportunities are available.
  • You may take courses numbered 1 to 199 from our medical, veterinary, education, or management schools. They are open to undergraduates.
  • Earn one of our more than 80 minors (listed on page 1 of the General Catalog), including the Quantitative Biology and Bioinformatics minor, the Neuroscience minor, and the Human Physiology minor.
  • Enhance your resume. Besides being interested in your scientific knowledge, many employers are looking for applicants that write well, speak well, solve problems, understand and use different software applications (PLS 21, ECS 15), and relate well with other people. You can prove and improve your skills by taking courses or internships that include those areas.
  • Improve your future lifestyle and take general courses in foods and nutrition (FST 10, NUT 10), personal finance (ARE 142), healthful living (PHE 44).
  • Explore new worlds and seek out new planets by taking a "10" course. Almost every department offers a general non-major course designated by the course number 10 (e.g. Astronomy 10 taught by Physics). Who knows—our acting course (DRA 10) may help on an interview.
  • Focus on understanding other cultures either through language and culture courses, or ethnic studies. Look for these course identifiers: AAS, ASA, CHI, NAS, WMS.
  • Take advantage of our unique educational roots and take such exotic courses as managing captive raptors (AVS 15L), taking care of farm and lab animals on campus (ANS 49A-J), gardening (PLS 5), growing grapes (VEN 2), making wine (VEN 3), clothing style and cultural studies (TXC 7), Art, Science and Insects (ENT 1), Introduction to Brewing and Beer (FST 3), Aging (ENT 117), National Parks (GEL 25), Earthquakes (GEL 17), and of course the incredibly popular tractor driving (ABT 49). It's fun handling the big machines!
  • Take a science integrative course in Science and Society (SAS), Science and Technology Studies (STS), or a seminar in your major or similar department.