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The psychology program at UC Davis is broad and includes students and faculty with a variety of interests. The department has developed around five major areas of emphasis:

Human Development

The Human Development minor is useful for students planning a career in the human services (such as teaching, social work or occupational therapy) and majoring in other disciplines. The minor allows students to focus on a limited part of the life span (infancy through adolescence or infancy and adulthood), to select the cultural context of interest (the family or cross-cultural emphasis) and to select courses that would provide information specific to their career goals (a consideration of cognitive development or of varieties of developmental disabilities, for example).


The Spanish minor assures a basic proficiency in Spanish and acquaints students with the language, literature, and traditions of the Spanish-speaking world. In today's global economy, this minor is an asset to almost any major.

Community Development

The minor in Community Development is designed to introduce students to community development theory, to analytic and research skills pertinent to the field, and to the role of organizations and critical issues in community development.


A minor in Sociology complements any major and gives students a valuable skill set that is desirable to a wide variety of employers. By taking sociology courses that analyze contemporary society, students learn to think critically, analyze complex situations, develop their written and verbal communication skills, and understand the world around them in a new way.


The Russian minor assures a basic proficiency in Russian and acquaints students with the language, literature and traditions. In today's global economy, this minor is an asset to almost any major.

Native American Studies

The Native American Studies minor provides an interdisciplinary introduction to the Native experience in the Americas through coursework in history, literature, art, performance, languages, values, philosophy, religion, current events, political economic and the environment.

Middle East/South Asia Studies

Similarly to the major, the ME/SA Studies Minor offers comparative studies of the Middle East and South Asia, regions that have been integrally linked for centuries by trade, migration, exchange of scientific, mathematical, political and philosophical ideas, religion, literature, and art.The ME/SA Studies Minor is a brief introduction to the field of ME/SA Studies.


The Department of Linguistics offers two minor programs:

  1. General Linguistics (listed below), which provides the student with basic knowledge of language structure and linguistic analysis.
  2. Linguistics for Language Teachers, which especially complements the major in English with the Teaching Area of emphasis; it is also of relevance to students interested in teaching foreign languages.



A minor in Japanese provides a significant complement to any declared major in the sciences, social sciences, humanities or the arts. The Japanese minor is comprised of a balance of literature and culture courses taught in English or Japanese, and a minimum of beginning third-year language proficiency. Whatever path one follows upon graduation, fulfilling the Japanese minor prepares the student for the increasingly global contexts of the modern world.