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Political Science

What is the proper role of government in a democratic society? What rights should be extended to citizens, and how should those rights be protected? Political scientists study the complex, intertwined forms of government and their effects on citizens, businesses and institutions. As a political science major at UC Davis, you'll enjoy the unique advantage of having California's state capital just a few minutes' drive away.

Political Science – Public Service

Are you interested in how laws and regulations get made? Who influences public policy? It could be you! If you choose to major in Political Science: Public Service, your curriculum will help you focus specifically on how policy is formulated, implemented, evaluated and interpreted. Or focus on a specific area of policy, such as urban or environmental policy. You'll also complete a required internship with a political, governmental or non-profit organization related to your interests.


From subatomic particles to galaxies with billions of stars, physics studies what the universe is made of and how it works. As a physics major at UC Davis, you will learn about our present understanding of the universe and also have the opportunity to join with our faculty in research that pushes forward the frontier of knowledge. This research ranges from the very smallest distances associated with elementary particle physics through nanophysics and superconductivity and on to the structure and evolution of the entire universe. We offer A.B. and B.S. degrees in physics as well as a B.S.


Philosophy seeks to address questions about life and values that recur in every cultural setting and in every area of human thought. How do we know right from wrong? Can we use our subjective experiences to determine an objective reality? What does it mean to be a "good person" or to live a "good life?" Such problems are central to philosophical study. Philosophers also investigate the underlying assumptions and methods of other major academic disciplines in order to address issues about the nature of these subjects and the contributions they make to human understanding.

Pharmaceutical Chemistry

The demand for pharmaceutical chemists is high and is anticipated to grow as modern chemistry and biological sciences provide us with increasingly accurate tools and understanding to develop unique therapies. The bachelor's degree in pharmaceutical chemistry provides students with an in-depth understanding of the processes and societal issues surrounding the design and development of modern pharmaceuticals. Students in this major will learn how drugs work, their synthesis, design and delivery and ethical issues surrounding pharmaceutical development.

Native American Studies

Native American studies offers the opportunity to understand and learn from the history and traditions of the indigenous peoples of North, Central and South America. Drawing from the philosophy, politics, social values and arts of Native cultures, the major will provide you with insight into a diverse population of people. You will develop the research capabilities and critical thinking skills to foster a broad understanding of the human experience.


A major in music teaches you to explore and understand the history, theory, and performance of music. Your professors and lecturers are active researchers and performing musicians, who regularly have works performed, published and recorded around the globe. Students work closely with prominent Artists-in-Residence who give concerts throughout their year-long tenure. You'll also have the chance to perform with our symphony orchestra, band, chorus, world music ensembles, and a variety of smaller ensembles.

Middle East/South Asia Studies

The major in Middle East/South Asia Studies (MESA) 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. This region encompasses 44 countries, and the major focuses on the Arab Gulf, Egypt, India, Iran, Israel, Lebanon, the Meghreb (North Africa), Palestine, Syria and Turkey.

Medieval and Early Modern Studies

Many people have a concept of the centuries between 300 and 1500 CE as the "Dark Ages," a time when the former Roman Empire collapsed into barbarism and superstition. Yet this period saw the genesis of nearly every social institution still current today, including universities, hospitals, modern legal systems and capitalist economies.


Mathematics is much more than simple arithmetic and equations; it is the study of abstract structures, space, change and the interrelations of these concepts. Mathematics is the one language in which the meaning of each symbol can be defined precisely; it can be used to describe scientific concepts and processes exactly. Mathematicians work to address some of science and society's most pressing questions. Their work bridges the gaps between scientific disciplines and provides a framework for considering problems in their purest, most theoretical form.