FAQs for ALL incoming 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 about your questions and available times to meet. One of the advisors 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 GDB. 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 to 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?
  1. Make sure you do not have any holds under your account. 

  2. Have an alternative class schedule in case your preferred sections becomes full. 

  3. Check if you have satisfied course prerequisites before planning to register. 

  4. Confirm that the course you want to register for during Pass 1 is not major restricted. 

FAQs for incoming FRESHMEN

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. 

FAQs for incoming TRANSFERS

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. 

transfer plan
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 - the process can get a little rushed that way.