All Students

  • What is Global Disease Biology? 
  • GDB is a unique major that offers a One Health perspective to health and disease issues locally and globally. The One Health concept describes that the health of all animals, plants, humans, and environment are connected and affect each other. Through classes in this major, you will learn to identify holistic solutions to problems in health and disease. Check around our website for more information on One Health and what this major offers!
  • GDB seems very broad.... What career options do I have with this degree?
  • GDB does provide you with a broad perspective, which allows you to apply your knowledge in multiple fields of choice. You can specialize in a specific area with Restricted Electives and the practicum project, or you can mix and match different interests you may have within One Health. Our graduates have gone on to pursue human medicine, veterinary medicine, environmental science, public health, research in multiple fields, plant pathology, and more. Sometimes our graduates choose a mix of choices from that list, like MD/MPH, MPH/JD, MD/PhD, DVM/MPH, etc.
  • How do I know what courses to take on my first quarter?
  • The advising team will look at your records and determine what requirements you need to fulfill for the major. We will come up with a one-to-two-year plan for you, which will include classes we suggest you take on your first quarter. 
  • What if I can’t register for all my scheduled courses? 
  • Because new students register later than continuing students, this is a general concern from new students. You are not alone! Many of the courses that freshmen take are on “seat release,” which means that at every registration time slot, there will be new seats available for new incoming students. This means that almost everyone gets the classes they need for their first quarter! And if you don’t, we can help you find alternatives! There is always another requirement you can take that quarter. 
  • If I need help during registration, how do I contact an advisor? 
  • You can always reach an advisor by emailing gdb-advise@ucdavis.edu. You have a 4-hour window of time to register for courses, so we will have enough time to get back to you. There may be other immediate ways to reach our advisors during registration dates—keep an eye out at the Orientation page on Canvas!
  • If I want to meet with someone, how do I make an appointment with an advisor? 
  • Your best option is to email gdb-advise@ucdavis.edu with your name, SID, questions, and available times to meet. An advisor will get back to you as soon as possible and we will fit you into the calendar for an appointment. Another way to make an appointment with the Academic Advisor is to use appointments.ucdavis.edu to schedule a time. Once you log in, you click on “Plant Pathology, Entomology & Nematology Advising Center,” then select Global Disease Biology. Then, fill out the questionnaire and select a time. 
  • I feel overwhelmed with this transition to UC Davis… What should I do? 
  • Talk to us! Or anyone, really. While we may not have direct solutions for whatever is overwhelming for you, we may be able to point you to the right resources. Check out our website for UC Davis resources available to students. There are resources for nearly everything—emotional support, social, personal struggles, academic struggles, etc. Let us know how the advising office can support you during this transition time for you. 
  • What is the difference between Pass 1, Open Registration, and Pass 2?
  • During your assigned Pass 1 appointment, you will be able to register for courses with open seats for a four-hour window. Notice that you will NOT be able to waitlist for any courses at this time. After your Pass 1 appointment, you can register during “Open Hours”: Monday–Friday evenings (8pm–midnight PT) and Weekends (10am–6pm PT). Open Registration is a period of time (about a week) when all students are allowed to drop or add courses at any time. Notice you will still NOT be able to waitlist at this time. You can only add courses with open seats. 

    During your assigned Pass 2 appointment, you will be able to register and waitlist for courses for a four-hour window. So, if a course no longer has open seats, you have the option to add yourself to the waitlist. You can also register/waitlist for courses that were major restricted during Pass 1. Once your four-hour Pass 2 window expires, “Open Hours” are available to you: Monday–Friday evenings (8pm–midnight PT) and Weekends (10am–6pm PT). 
  • What can I do to prepare for Registration?
  • Make sure you do not have any holds under your account. 
    Have an alternative class schedule in case your preferred sections becomes full. 
    Check if you have satisfied course prerequisites before planning to register. 
    Confirm that the course you want to register for during Pass 1 is not major restricted. 
  • Am I required to take Chemistry 118C and/or Physics 7C?
  • The Global Disease Biology major does not require CHE 118C or PHY 7C, but certain health professional schools require these classes. If you are interested in a pre-health route, please meet with an advisor to discuss scheduling. We also recommend meeting with Health Professions Advising for more in-depth help with pre-health planning.
  • Can I take the BIS 102/BIS 103 combo instead of BIS 105?
  • Yes, you can. Two quarters of Biochemistry is a requirement for some health professional schools, and so many students interested in this path choose to take BIS 102 and BIS 103, instead of BIS 105.
  • How do I go about choosing my restricted electives and when will I take those courses?
  • All GDB students will formally submit their proposed restricted electives during GDB 187 which will be taken junior year. Students will choose their restricted electives with the consent of their master or faculty advisor (Dr. Johan Leveau) and their academic advisor (Bianca Radut), and most students will take their restricted electives during their junior and senior year. The restricted electives are upper division courses that add up to a minimum of 25 units and that are chosen by the student to reflect their individual interest within the field of global health and to personalize and focus their GDB experience. The ‘restricted’ adjective refers to the fact that there are certain restrictions to classes that may be counted towards these 25 units; see our Guide to Restricted Electives or consult an advisor for details.
  • Am I expected to develop and carry out my own, unique study for my senior research project?
  • While some students certainly create their own research projects, most GDB students will be a part of a graduate or postgraduate student’s project, and their senior research project will be based off of that.
  • Can I take courses at a community college while enrolled at UC Davis?
  • Yes! This is referred to as "Simultaneous Enrollment." Students who intend to take a course at UCD and at another institution must be enrolled full time at UC Davis (12+ units) and be in good academic standing. Students must:

    - Have an approved academic plan on file via OASIS
    - Be enrolled in 12 quarter units for the term they are applying for
    - Be in good academic standing for the term they are applying for
    - For students applying for fall quarter, end of term must be completed for spring quarter (at the end of June) before applications can be approved.
    - For students on academic contracts during summer session, petitions will not be approved for fall quarter.
    - Schedule a meeting with a Dean’s office advisor the quarter before applying for simultaneous enrollment.
    - Applications must be submitted and approved prior to enrolling for the course.

    Please meet with our GDB major advisor to discuss Simultaneous Enrollment prior to enrolling in the course! You can contact the GDB department and make an appointment at gdb-advise@ucdavis.edu and appointments.ucdavis.edu

First-Year Students

  • Will I be able to graduate in four years?
  • Yes, but it will require some planning on your part. The first and best step to avoid taking extra quarters is to make an appointment with our advisors to discuss a draft four-year plan so that you are aware of what core classes need to be taken and when. Students who are proactive about scheduling will find that completing the Global Disease Biology major in four years is absolutely doable. You may also want to consider taking summer sessions, transfer community college credits, and minimizing superfluous courses - our advisors can discuss these options with you in more detail.
  • Am I required to take GDB 90 during my freshman year?
  • While it is highly suggested to take GDB 90 as soon as you can, it is not technically a prerequisite for any class except GDB 187, which you will likely take junior year. However, GDB 90 is truly an excellent introduction to the major and as such it will be more useful for you as a GDB student to take it sooner rather than later.
  • Do I have to take Placement Exams? By when? 
  • Yes! You must take Placement Exams in order to remain registered for the first quarter of the chemistry series and math series. The latest you can take Placement Exams is the beginning of Fall quarter. Don’t leave it for last minute!
  • What if I have AP or IB tests?
  • All GDB students must take the entire chemistry series, regardless of AP Chemistry test score. If you have an AP/IB Calculus test and would like to skip the first quarter of the math requirement, you must talk to a GDB advisor. However, please note that graduate and professional schools often do NOT take AP/IB tests in place of their requirements. Most of our students take the entire calculus series at UC Davis. AP/IB English tests may fulfill your English requirement for freshman year. The advisors will let you know about this during Orientation. For other AP tests, please contact the Dean’s Office to see if they cover any GE requirements. 
  • Am I able to retake a course that I did not pass on the first attempt?
  • Not passing a class is not the end of the world! Undergraduate students are allowed to repeat and replace up to 16 units. Let’s say you failed MAT 17A: you can retake it and your new grade will completely replace the old one. There are restrictions on retaking a course more than twice - come into advising to discuss those details. Also, keep in mind that your schedule will need to be updated and revisited to include the repeated course, so you should plan accordingly, and talk to our advisors so that they may go over the details with you.
  • Will I be able to study abroad while completing the major in four years?
  • Yes! There are numerous options available so that you are able to study abroad and graduate on time. However, the earlier you start planning, the better. We recommend meeting with our advisors and contacting the UC Davis Study Abroad office to discuss how to structure your schedule so that your study abroad trip will fit nicely and you are not behind when you return.

Transfer Students

  • I am a transfer student. How is my GDB experience going to be different from that of an incoming freshman?
  • As a transfer student, your academic experience here at UC Davis will vary depending on what units you transfer in with, whether or not you are IGETC certified, how many of your courses will articulate, etc. The best course of action for transfer students in GDB is to make an appointment with our Academic Advisor so that you may have a more personal conversation about your experience here at UC Davis. In general though, make ample use of the UC Davis Admission's Transfer page and Assist to gain insight into what courses you have already satisfied and which ones you will need to take at UC Davis. Finally, the Transfer and Reentry Center (TRC) is an amazing, on-campus resource available for transfer students.
  • Do I have to take Placement Exams? 
  • It depends on what you’ve taken at your previous institution. If you’ve taken math and chemistry, you do not have to take placement exams. But if you are starting one of those series here at UC Davis, then you must take placement exams to remain registered for the courses. If you’d like to take a language course and skip to a certain level, then you should check with their specific department for their rules. If you do have to take an exam, please do so by the beginning of Fall. 
  • I see “RE” written in my plan for this quarter. What does that mean? 
  • RE is our abbreviation for Restricted Electives. REs are 25 units of upper division coursework that you get to choose. These electives are supposed to enhance your GDB education by allowing you to “specialize” in whatever area of One Health interests you most - or mix and match the ones you love. For more information and examples, see our website or ask us for a Guide to Restricted Electives by email. 
  • Will I graduate in 2 years?
  • This depends on how much coursework you’ve completed at your previous institution. You can refer to the chart below for some estimates of time. NOTE that this can vary depending on the student! Please see an advisor to plan for your time at UC Davis. 
    How Long?
  • ​​I have an unfulfilled requirement, but I took the course at my previous institution. What’s the deal? 
  • Your best bet is to check in with us. As we go over each student’s records to make personalized plans, we may have missed something. It may also be that the course you took at your previous institution does not transfer to UC Davis as the required course for the major. This happens often with transfers. If you want to pursue the approval of this course you took before, our recommendation is that you talk to that specific department to see how they would go about evaluating your course. This process would be called “Force Articulations” - see Orientation materials for instructions. Ultimately, it is up to them to grant you UC Davis credit for courses taken at other colleges or universities. 
  • It seems like I won’t have enough time… How soon should I be looking for a practicum project?
  • Most students complete their practicum over their senior year. If you follow the norm, you have at least a year to figure out what you want to research for the practicum and who could mentor you through the process. We always say that early research experience never hurts. But it may add to your stress of transitioning to UC Davis. So don’t worry about it until your Winter or Spring quarter! That’s perfectly enough time to find a mentor. Just don’t leave the search for your senior year because the process can get a little rushed that way. 

 Informational Videos by the GDB Team:

Guide to Restricted Electives

Guide to the Practicum