UCSD will Offer Two B.S. Degrees in the Social Sciences Division Next Fall


Photo courtesy of UCSD Department of History website.

Written by:

The UC San Diego Division of Social Sciences will offer two new Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degrees with one in the Department of Anthropology and the other in the Global Health Program. Both will be available for enrollment starting Fall 2019.

The Department of Anthropology will offer a B.S. degree in Biological Anthropology. The new degree will look at the “evolution of the culture-bearing capacity in humans,” and it will apply neuroscience and cognitive science knowledge to “investigate the neural substrates of cognition in humans,” according to the department’s website. The major would be ideal for students interested in applying physical science knowledge and skills.

The new major will also require students to take courses in the CHEM 6 series, the BILD series, and the MATH 10 or 20 series. It will be joining the Economics Department and Cognitive Science Department in the Social Sciences Division, which will require hard science courses for its undergraduate students.

“The development of this science degree would accurately reflect [our students’] training in empirical, scientific disciplines, while preparing them for professional studies in health or human sciences and maintaining the big-picture view of the human condition, as is inherent to anthropology,” said Management Service Officer for the Department of Anthropology Nancy Lee. “Moreover, the increased formal skills requirement will prepare students for the rigors of natural sciences, which are most frequently required prerequisites for graduate school and popular pre-professional tracks.”

According to Lee, the department conducted informal discussions with their Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) students over the years about creating a new B.S. major. The students provided “enthusiastic feedback and support” about the new degree, which drove the department to seek its development.

The Global Health Program will offer a B.S. degree in Global Health. The program already made history in 2014 when it became the first of its kind in the UC system. While both the B.A. and B.S. are “interdisciplinary in nature,” the B.A. will focus on the medical social sciences and humanities while the B.S. will focus on the natural sciences, according to the department’s website. This would make the major more appealing for students interested in pre-health careers because it would satisfy many prerequisite courses for medical school, pharmacy school, and nursing school.

The increasingly well-developed global health infrastructure at UCSD, including our current and rapidly growing pedagogical programs, make our campus an ideal site to expand the degree to a B.S.,” said Lee, who is also the Management Service Officer for the Global Health Program. “The rationale behind expanding our degree offerings to include a B.S. degree in Global Health is to give students who are committed to the field an opportunity to build in their pre-health requirements and, thereby, receive systematic recognition as part of their degree for the science-related courses completed.”

The Department of Anthropology and the Global Health Program are the latest social science departments to add a B.S. degree, following the Department of Political Science’s new B.S. degree in Data Analytics in Fall 2018.

For both majors, students graduating in Winter, Spring, or Summer 2019 are not eligible to enroll in the degrees. Students interested in the these programs may contact the Department of Anthropology at anthroadvising@ucsd.edu and the Global Health Program at ghpadvising@ucsd.edu for more information.

Anabel King is the Assistant Managing Editor at The Triton. You can follow her @anabelkingg.