The College of Letters and Science
The College of Letters and Science provides students with the opportunity to actively engage the central academic disciplines of the university. Founded in 1951, the College of Letters and Science is the largest of the schools and colleges at UC Davis, the University of California's most comprehensive university. The college is comprised of three divisions encompassing the broadest offering of disciplines at UC Davis: Humanities, Arts and Cultural Studies; Mathematical and Physical Sciences; and Social Sciences. The college's 650+ faculty members teach the core curriculum for virtually all 23,000 undergraduate students in the university as well as mentoring thousands of graduate students pursuing more than 50 fields of interest in the college. The college confers Bachelor of Arts (A.B.), Bachelor of Science (B.S.) and Bachelor of Arts and Science (B.A.S.) degrees.
The College of Letters and Science is a community of scholars and students sharing a commitment to liberal education rather than to specialized, vocationally-oriented training. The college exposes you to the worlds of human experience, of ideas, of artistic accomplishments and of matter and things. Within this curriculum you are able to explore a variety of academic fields, engage in the pursuit of fundamental knowledge and gain the capacity for independent study and thought. By learning to think carefully and critically, you will be able to continue the ongoing process of education that begins in the classroom but continues over a lifetime. You will have learned how to learn—the ultimate objective of a liberal arts education.
The educational goals of the college are reflected in the three primary groups of requirements established by the faculty: the English Composition Requirement, the Foreign Language and Area Requirements and the Major Requirements.
The College of Letters and Science acknowledges the value of language learning and encourages students to acquire proficiency in a foreign language before graduating from UC Davis. The goals of language learning are the following: communicating complex ideas in the target language; acquiring understanding of a variety of cultural perspectives and differences; fostering intercultural communicative competence; gaining access to cultural production from another time and place; enhancing knowledge of other disciplines through the target language; recognizing the nature and structure of languages, including one's own; and developing the capacity to participate actively in multilingual communities both at home and abroad.
The college has a well-developed system of faculty advisers, professional staff advisers and student peer advisers who are available for individual consultations with undergraduates in a variety of settings, from the college undergraduate education and advising office to departmental offices to campus residence halls.
The strength of the college lies in the faculty’s commitment to advancing the frontiers of human knowledge through research, artistic expression and other creative endeavors and to the effective communication and application of that knowledge through teaching and public service. Together, faculty and students in the College of Letters and Science create a climate that enables students to achieve their highest potential.
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Updated: March 22, 2017 10:38 AM