Global Disease Biology, Bachelor of Science College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences

Program Office

150 Hutchison Hall; 530-754-4131; gdb-advise@ucdavis.edu; Global Disease Biology

Major Program

Approach

The Global Disease Biology (GDB) major offers students the opportunity to study disease and its relationship to the health of people, animals, plants, and the environment. The program uses an integrated approach to advance student understanding of the concept(s) of disease, the societal and personal impacts of past, present and future diseases, and the science behind disease discoveries, causes, evolution, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. The program recognizes the interconnectedness of people, animals, plants, and the environment and aims to identify and address the fundamental causes of poor health around the world. Managing global disease problems requires a multifaceted, holistic approach to address the full spectrum of human, animal, plant, and environmental health risks (also known as a One Health approach). Throughout a series of core courses, issues related to human, animal, and plant health, along with tools available to solve these problems, will be introduced to provide students with real-world scenarios in which they can apply and advance their creative and critical thinking skills. The major prepares graduates with the knowledge, leadership skills and experiences required to excel in professions associated with global health, the environment, food safety and security, biological safety and security, and health policy. For more information, see Global Disease Biology.

Program

The Global Disease Biology major provides students with broad preparatory scientific course work, global disease biology core classes, flexibility in upper division electives, and a strong research experience.

Global Disease Biology core classes are intended to be transdisciplinary and focus on concepts that cut across human, animal, and plant diseases offering a unifying ecological and quantitative perspective on disease.

Flexible upper division electives are known as Restricted Electives, which allow students to plan their chosen emphasis of study as part of a required discussion course (GDB 187) and in consultation with their advisor. Students will draw from many undergraduate courses currently offered on disease and health in a way that compliments the core courses required for the Global Disease Biology major. You can read more about these electives in the Guide to Restricted Electives from our website

Strong research experience is acquired in a senior research project, called the GDB Practicum, which each student designs to bridge the disciplines of the major. You can learn more about the Practicum project requirement by reading the Guide to Practicum from our website

Internships and Careers

The program and interests of each student in solving societal problems guides students to a range of internship and career choices. On and off-campus internship opportunities are available in research laboratories, in field situations, with governmental agencies, with private industry, and in international programs. A degree in Global Disease Biology prepares graduates with the knowledge, leadership skills and experiences required to excel in a vast array of professions associated with areas such as healthcare, medicine, public health, health policy, food safety and security, and nature conservation, as each relates to disease and health of people, animals, plants and the environment in developing and developed countries.

Learn more about our alumni on our GDB Blog and Facebook page

Faculty

Includes members of the Departments of Plant Pathology in the College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, and School of Medicine.

Lead Faculty Advisor

Johan H.J. Leveau, Ph.D., Professor (Plant Pathology)

Preparatory Subject Matter
Global Disease Biology
GDB 090Introduction to Global Disease Biology1
Science & Society
SAS 013Disease & Society3
Biological Sciences
BIS 002AIntroduction to Biology: Essentials of Life on Earth5
BIS 002BIntroduction to Biology: Principles of Ecology & Evolution5
BIS 002CIntroduction to Biology: Biodiversity & the Tree of Life5
Chemistry
CHE 002AGeneral Chemistry5
CHE 002BGeneral Chemistry5
CHE 002CGeneral Chemistry5
AND
Choose a series:6-8
Organic Chemistry: Brief Course
and Organic Chemistry: Brief Course
Organic Chemistry for Health & Life Sciences
and Organic Chemistry for Health & Life Sciences
Physics
PHY 007AGeneral Physics4
PHY 007BGeneral Physics4
Calculus
MAT 017ACalculus for Biology & Medicine4
MAT 017BCalculus for Biology & Medicine4
MAT 017CCalculus for Biology & Medicine4
Statistics; choose one:4
Elementary Statistics
Applied Statistics for Biological Sciences
Applied Statistics in Agricultural Sciences
Preparatory Subject Matter Subtotal64-66
Depth Subject Matter
Biological Sciences
BIS 101Genes & Gene Expression4
Biochemistry
BIS 105Biomolecules & Metabolism3
Evolution & Ecology
EVE 100Introduction to Evolution4
Microbiology
MIC 102Introductory Microbiology3
MIC 103LIntroductory Microbiology Laboratory2
Pathology, Microbiology & Immunology
PMI 129YOne Health: Human, Animal & Environment Interfaces3
Medicine & Epidemiology
VME 158Infectious Disease in Ecology & Conservation3
Global Disease Biology
GDB 101Epidemiology4
GDB 102Disease Intervention & Policy 4
GDB 187Global Disease Biology Seminar 13
GDB 189Global Disease Biology Senior Research 23
GDB 189DGlobal Disease Biology Research Discussion 31
Pathogen/Disease Courses; choose two:6-8
Medical Entomology
Biology of Parasitism
Microbiome of People, Animals, & Plants
General Virology
Biology of Animal Viruses
Introduction to Plant Pathology
Medical Bacteria & Fungi
Depth Subject Matter Subtotal43-45
Restricted Electives
Focused specialty upper division courses as outlined in the latest version of the “Guide to the GDB Restricted Electives” and with approval of an advisor; 25 units is the minimum.25
Restricted Electives Subtotal25
Total Units132-136
1

GDB 187 provides details about the practicum requirement.

2

GDB 189 provides research units for the practicum project.

3

GDB 189D provides some time to write the practicum report.

Global Disease Biology Core Competencies

Read the Core Competencies for the Global Disease Biology major

First Year High School Admits 

Your first quarter at UC Davis will be personalized to you, according to your Placement Exam scores for both Math and Chemistry. Please see an advisor to make sure you register for the appropriate courses.

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
FallUnits
This is a SAMPLE schedule—see advisor to confirm your own plan.
SAS 013 Disease & Society 3
CHE 002A General Chemistry 5
MAT 017A Calculus for Biology & Medicine 4
SAS 006A Introduction to Career Discovery Groups (Optional program for career exploration.) 1
 Units13
 Total Units13

To make a 4-year plan, please see the GDB Advising team—you are welcome to talk to your academic advisor or peer advisors! Email us at gdb-advise@ucdavis.edu.

First Year Transfers

Your first quarter plan will be personalized to you, according to how your courses have articulated from your previous institution to UC Davis. Please see an advisor to make sure you register for the appropriate classes! 

Plan of Study Grid
Third Year
FallUnits
This is a SAMPLE schedule—see advisor to confirm your own plan.
SAS 013 Disease & Society 3
GDB 090 Introduction to Global Disease Biology 1
BIS 101 Genes & Gene Expression 4
SAS 106 Career Discovery Groups for Transfer Students (Optional program for career exploration.) 1
Restricted Elective 1 4
 Units13
 Total Units13
1

Restricted Electives make up 25 (or more) units of a student's GDB major requirements. Read more about them in the Guide to Restricted Electives, which you can download from our website.

To make a full plan for graduation, please see the GDB Advising team—you are welcome to talk to your academic advisor or peer advisors! Email us at gdb-advise@ucdavis.edu