Developing Your First Quarter Schedule
Academic advising is an essential element in your educational success. Establish contact and develop a relationship with your advisors as soon as possible.
To make the most informed decisions about course selection, you will need to visit the UC Davis General Catalog and the Class Search Tool. All requirements and course descriptions are listed in the General Catalog and a list of course offerings are available on the Class Search Tool.
In order to graduate in four years, you will need to take an average of 15 units per quarter. If you find it necessary to take a lighter course load (e.g. the minimum 13 units) during your first quarter here, it is advised that you make up the units in future quarters and/or summer sessions to maintain the expected unit average. You should familiarize yourself with the Minimum Progress regulations (Quantitative Standards) found in the General Catalog.
It is important to allow yourself time for routine cultural and academic adjustments and to adjust to the more intensive quarter system. You should also consider a balance of subject matter. For example, you may choose to enroll in one course from humanities, one from social science, one from natural sciences or mathematics and perhaps a P.E. activity course. Providing yourself with a variety of subjects and study demands (e.g. writing, calculating, reading) will help you avoid “academic burnout.”
Remember... Make sure you have completed the prerequisites for each course in which you enroll. The prerequisites are listed in the course descriptions in the General Catalog.
College and University Requirements
English Composition Requirements
Once the Entry-Level Writing requirement is satisfied, you can begin taking courses to meet the college’s English Composition requirement. The English Composition requirement consists of two classes which must be completed with C- grade or “Pass” OR by completing the exam in item 3 below.
Choose ONE of following options:
- Two courses from: ENL 3, UWP 1, 18, 19, 101, UWP 102A-G, 104A-F, NEM 150; OR
One course from the previous list AND one from: COM 1, 2, 3, 4, NAS 5, CMN 1
- Advanced Placement English score of 4 or 5 plus any course on above list EXCEPT UWP 1 or ENL 3
- AFTER completing 70 units pass the English Composition Examination administered by the College of L&S
You may also use equivalent transfer courses to fulfill the English Composition requirement. Remember to also consult with the General Catalog and your major advisor regarding the English requirement for your major. Some majors require additional or specific English/writing courses.
General Education (GE) Requirement
The General Education requirement has three components: Topical Breadth, Social-Cultural Diversity and Writing Experience. You must satisfy the Entry-Level Writing requirement before completing a course for GE Writing Experience credit. Consult with the Dean’s Office if you feel you may have satisfied some (or all) of the GE requirement at a previous institution. If you completed the IGETC at a community college before you were admitted to UC Davis, your entire GE requirement is complete. Note that you must specifically request that your community college send your IGETC to the Dean’s Office before it can be processed.
The approved GE courses that will be taught during the quarter are on the Class Search Tool. Check the General Catalog for specific details.
NOTE: A single course may not be used simultaneously to satisfy the college’s English Composition requirement and GE Writing Experience.
There is no College or University math requirement. If you intend to pursue a major that requires math, you may want to get started in Fall Quarter. The Math 16 A-B-C series is for students who major in the environmental, social, or biological sciences. The Math 17 A-B-C series is for students who major specifically in biological sciences. The Math 21 A-B-C series is for students who major in the physical sciences and engineering.
If you are planning to enroll in a math class (Math 12, 16A, 17A, 21A, 21AH), you are required to take the Math Placement Exam. ALL students who register in MAT 12, 16A, 17A, or 21A, will be required to take the Math Placement Exam. This means we will no longer accept SAT-M or AP scores. For MAT 16A, 17A, or 21A, you are required to take the Math Placement Exam regardless if you passed MAT 12 (or an equivalent course elsewhere). In other words, remember this: everyone is taking the exam. The registration system will allow you to enroll in a math course before you complete the exam but you will be dropped from the course if you do not place into it by taking the exam. The exam is offered during Orientation, as well as during the first week of each quarter. You can take the exam twice in a quarter. The score you get on the Math Placement Exam will determine which math course you are prepared to successfully complete.
Even if you satisfy the first quarter of Calculus with your AP scores you are still encouraged to consider taking the entire series. Some students find this helpful in establishing a strong foundation for their future courses. Although this is not required you should discuss this option with an adviser to explore if this would be best for your academic plans.
To help you prepare for the diagnostic exam, there are several self-help booklets available at the UC Davis Bookstore. The Student Academic Success Center on campus holds review workshops at the beginning of each quarter.
There is no College or University chemistry requirement. However, if you are intending to pursue a major that does require chemistry, you may want to enroll in the Chemistry 2 A-B-C series.
All students who wish to enroll in Chemistry 2A or 2AH must pass both the Chemistry Placement Exam and the Math Placement Exam with satisfactory scores. The exam is waived if you received a score of 5 on the AP Chemistry Exam. The registration system will allow you to enroll in a chemistry course before you complete the exam but you will be dropped from the course if you do not place into it by taking the exams. The exam is offered during Orientation, as well as during the first week of each quarter. You can take the exam twice in a quarter. The exam results will determine which chemistry course you are prepared to successfully complete. It may determine that you need to complete Workload 41C prior to Chemistry 2A. Please note that Chemistry WLD-041C is only offered during Fall Quarter.
Students now have the option of enrolling in the ALEKS Preparatory Chemistry in lieu of WLD-041C. This computerized adaptive learning software gauge's a student's current mastery level of Chemistry in a self-supervised, self-placed online course. ALEKS Preparatory Chemistry is open to all students, regardless of exam scores or current/previous coursework. More information about the ALEKS Preparatory Chemistry can be found on the Chemistry website.
If you know what major you intend to pursue, then you may consult the General Catalog for the list of required courses for your major. It is important to confirm that the courses you have selected will fulfill requirements for your major. This is where your departmental/major advisers can be extremely helpful. Contact information for your major adviser can be found within the Academic Advising Resource Directory in the Dean’s Office.
Elective and Exploratory Courses
Finally, remember that you may take elective courses in areas that interest you. There are many interesting courses offered at Davis in which you may have had no previous exposure. Just be aware of any prerequisite requirements or special restrictions. Read the General Catalog. Think of it as a shopping guide. Try something new and different. That’s what makes learning so exciting.