Psychology Major & Minor Requirements

Jump to:  Psychology A.B.  |  Psychology B.S.  |  Minor  |  Restricted Electives

Psychology faculty and students at UC Davis generally explore the areas of perception, cognition, neuroscience, psychobiology, social psychology, personality, human development, and quantitative psychology.

The main objective of all of our undergraduate programs is a broad introduction to the scope of contemporary psychology. The Bachelor of Arts (AB) program looks at psychology through a liberal arts lens. The Bachelor of Science (BS) programs offers two science-oriented emphases of psychology: biology and math (quantitative psychology).

  • Eligibility to declare a major in Psychology (current students)
  • 1.  Save your progress toward the major on a Degree Worksheet in OASIS
    2. Completion of PSC 001 and PSC 041 with a combined GPA of 2.5 or better (all courses must be taken for a letter grade)* 
     - OR - you may take three upper division PSC courses with a combined GPA of 2.0 or better**

    * Transfer credit counts for eligibility purposes. While only UC grades make up your UC Davis GPA, we will use letter grades from your previous institution to determine your eligibility to declare.
    ** Upper division courses are numbered 100–199. Community college courses transfer as lower division.
  • Declaring multiple majors
  • Current students, not in their first term, may apply for a double major using the Change of Major form in OASIS. You will be accountable for the psychology eligibility requirements listed above, in addition to eligibility requirements for the other major you wish to declare. Students may not overlap more than 20% of upper division coursework between any two majors—20% is usually two courses, but not always. Low-unit majors, like humanities majors, may only allow for one course to overlap. Find the overlap policy on the College of Letters and Science website.

    Psychology majors can be combined with any major at UC Davis, with one exception—students may not combine Psychology B.S. Biological Emphasis with Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior (NPB). This combination exceeds the 20% overlap policy. 
  • Eligibility requirements for prospective transfer students
  • Prospective transfer students should refer to requirements set by Admissions
  • A.B. vs. B.S.: Does it matter and how do I choose?
  • The Psychology A.B. vs. B.S.: A Side-by-Side Comparison is a useful guide that offers a brief comparison of STEM load and benefits for each Psychology major.
     
    Generally, it makes little to no difference whether you choose A.B. or B.S. For grad school, as long as you take the necessary prerequisite courses for the grad programs that interest you, an A.B. is usually sufficient if you'd rather not choose a B.S. emphasis.

    You should plan courses and co-curricular activities that prepare you for your chosen field and/or grad programs, no matter what your major is. This strategy will shape you into a better candidate for a job or program than completing a B.S. major alone.

    You may find that for some health programs, like medical school, you can efficiently complete pre-health requirements by choosing the PSC-Biological emphasis. 
  • Pass/No Pass Grade Policy
  • For students wishing to switch into a Psychology major, plan to take PSC 001 and/or PSC 041 for a letter grade, so you can meet the eligibility requirement of 2.5 GPA. At least one of these courses should be taken for a letter grade.

    Aside from the eligibility requirement for declaring the Psychology major, the Psychology Department has no policies against taking major courses with a P/NP grading option. Students are free to elect a P/NP grading option for their major courses. However, students are still subject to the P/NP policy outlined in the College Unit Requirements set by the College of Letters and Science.

    The College Unit Requirements limit the total number of P graded units that can count towards graduation. 
    Self-elected P graded units, switched from a letter grading option, cannot exceed one-fourth of your total units earned in residence at UC Davis
    All P graded units, automatic and self-elected, cannot exceed one-third of your total units earned in residence at UC Davis 

Major Requirements for the Bachelor of Arts (AB) in Psychology

UC Davis degree requirements for a Bachelor of Arts include major requirements, general education, and other degree requirements, such as foreign language. Refer to the College of Letters and Science for more information about your non-major degree requirements.  


Major Requirements for the Bachelor of Science in Psychology

UC Davis degree requirements for a Bachelor of Science include major requirements, general education, and other degree requirements, such as 90 units of Natural Science & Math. Refer to the College of Letters and Science for more information about your non-major degree requirements.  

Biological Emphasis
Quantitative Emphasis

Psychology Minor Requirements

Minors are optional at UC Davis and can be useful in helping students reach the required total of 180 units for graduation. The University will not allow students to overlap more than one upper division course between a major and a minor. Find the overlap policy on the College of Letters and Science website.


Restricted Electives for Psychology Majors & Minor

Psychology major and minor programs require restricted electives, often referred to as PSC Electives. This elective requirement can be satisfied by any of the following courses:

Note: Psychology tutoring credit (PSC 197T) cannot satisfy major or minor requirements.