Frequently Asked Questions

Does BIOE 20C substitute for ENVS 24?

Yes, BIOE 20C is intended for ENVS/BIO combined students or double majors, however it is accepted as a substitute for ENVS 24 in the single and combined majors with Economics and Earth Sciences.

Does CHEM 1A substitute for ENVS 23?

Yes, Chem 1A is intended for ENVS/BIO or ENVS/Earth combined majors or double majors. Single majors can take it as a substitute for ENVS 23.

How do I get advising? Do I need an appointment?

An appointment is not required. You can meet with a peer advisor during Drop-In Advising times. If you wish to make an appointment, email ENVS adivising, or click here for instructions on how to make an appointment through slug success.

What can I do with an ENVS degree?

Although your prospects for a job are enhanced by graduate training, many of our undergraduates have gone directly into relevant careers. Whether you want to go to graduate school or find a job, the basic rule is to take the initiative and do your homework. Research jobs and schools, and speak with the staff at the UCSC Career Center. Talk with people, especially environmental studies faculty. Do an internship. Explore the options. Click here to see positions held by some of our alumni.

Can I get credit for courses I take outside UCSC?

Provided your transferred coursework is accepted at UCSC, you will, at the least, receive credits toward the 180-unit minimum required for graduation. If your transferred courses are lower division (e.g., all community college courses) they may satisfy prerequisite or general education requirements; they will not satisfy upper division major requirements. See the Assist website for transfer guides.
If your transferred courses are upper division and relevant to environmental studies and you are doing a full major (rather than combined) you may petition for up to two substitutions toward the seven required electives. Please note that you are allowed a maximum of two substitutions including all sources (EAP, or pre-approved substitutions).
Once the course is included in your UCSC student record you will need to petition for the substitution (unless the course is on the pre-approved list). The petition form is available here. The petition must include a justification and must be accompanied by a copy of:

1. The course syllabus. 2. Your current UCSC student course history (from "More Links" in your student portal), including any transferred credits. 3.  A transcript from any other institution from which you would like to substitute a course, which should include your grade.

Do I have to take ENVS courses for letter grades?  What about Pass/No Pass?

Most ENVS major courses can be taken for pass/no pass. You do need to keep track of the percentage of all courses you take for pass/no pass grading and be sure to not exceed the 25% maximum. You can check your percentage of pass/no pass courses on your student center ->student advising summary ->statistics tab. However, there are 2 important exceptins to this general guideline:

       1. Students pursuing the combined major with biology must take ALL courses for a letter grade.
       2. All of the Senior Comprehensive Courses (aka senior exit classes) must be taken for a letter grade.

What's an independent study and how do I set one up?

An independent study is a two- or five-credit lower or upper division course designed by you and a faculty sponsor. It could be a lab, field, or library research project. Independent studies or Internships (5 credit) will apply to the single major as one of the upper division electives. However, this option is only available for the single major, not for any of the combined majors.
The steps to enroll are:
  1. Meet with your faculty sponsor to discuss the plan.
  2. Fill out the form with your sponsor, sign it and obtain the enrollment course number from the sponsor.

How do I complete the Senior Comp Requirement (aka Senior Exit)?

Please read the Senior Comprehensive Requirement page.

What's the best way to get a letter of recommendation from the faculty?

See " How to Ask Faculty for a Letter of Recommendation"

I'm planning to graduate at the end of next quarter; what do I need to do?

Check with your college to make sure your general education, college, university and credit requirements will be completed. Please review the Academic Advisement Report (AAR) on your portal before meeting with your college. Apply to Graduate, in your Student Center, online.  You do not need to notify the ENVS office separately but it is a good idea to come in the quarter prior to graduation to go over your student record and make sure you will be finished with all major requirements by the end of your final quarter.

Where can I get help with my classes?

You should meet with your instructor during their posted office hours, and if your class has a teaching assistant (TA), make time to meet with them during their office hours, as well. The campus also has tutors available in the Learning Support Services office.


See Also