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Seventh College

Seventh College, established in 2019, strives to enrich students’ college experience by empowering them with the knowledge and skills needed to approach large-scale, global issues from an interdisciplinary perspective. The academic plan for Seventh College was created by UC San Diego faculty, students, and staff with a broad range of experience and expertise. This group worked for over two years to develop an academic plan that embraces the best practices in general education and harnesses UC San Diego’s reputation for innovation, collaboration, and path-breaking research.

General Education

Seventh College’s general-education curriculum consists of fourteen required courses.


Synthesis courses take an interdisciplinary approach to understanding and addressing the challenges posed by our changing planet. The three-course sequence includes two courses of intensive instruction in university-level writing (SYN 1 and SYN 2) and one project-based course (SYN 100).


Students select two courses from each of five areas:

  • Arts
  • Humanities
  • Natural Sciences and Engineering
  • Quantitative Reasoning
  • Social Sciences

Alternatives courses may overlap with major, minor, and university requirements. Approved Advanced Placement (AP) credit, International Baccalaureate (IB) credit, and transfer credit will be applied.


Students must complete one high-impact course (2–4 units) selected from a variety of options including internships, mentored research, study abroad, or other significant experiential learning. The high-impact course may overlap with major, minor, and university requirements.

Transfer Students

Students who have completed their lower-division general-education requirements at an accredited four-year institution and students who have completed a systemwide or campuswide approved core curriculum in a California community college prior to entering UC San Diego must complete SYN 100 and one high-impact course. All other transfer students must complete the general-education requirements listed above.

Graduation Requirements

  1. Satisfaction of American History and Institutions; Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; and the Entry Level Writing Requirement (ELWR).
  2. Fulfillment of all general-education requirements.
  3. Completion of a departmental or program major.
  4. A minimum of 180 units.
  5. A minimum of sixty upper-division units.
  6. At least thirty-five of the final forty-five units completed at UC San Diego as an enrolled Seventh College student.
  7. A cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or higher.

Pass/Not Pass Grading Option

With the exception of units earned in independent study courses (numbered 199), no more than 25 percent of an undergraduate student’s total UC San Diego units may be taken on a Pass/Not Pass basis. SYN 1, 2, and 100 must be taken for a letter grade. Students are advised to check with their department or program before taking a major or minor course on a Pass/Not Pass basis.


Seventh College students may pursue any of the majors offered at UC San Diego. Refer to Courses/Curricula/Faculty for details on specific major requirements. With the approval of both departments or programs and the college provost, a student in good standing may declare a double major. Students are encouraged to consult regularly with college and major advisers to review their academic progress.

Individual Studies Major

The Individual Studies major allows students to pursue a coherent course of study that is not formally recognized as a major at UC San Diego but would otherwise meet all of the standards established by the college and by the Academic Senate. Interested students must submit a written proposal explaining the purpose of an Individual Studies major, including reasons why their educational goals cannot be accommodated within an existing major. The proposal must be approved by a faculty adviser and the Seventh College provost/executive committee. Refer to the Seventh College website for more information about the Individual Studies major.


Seventh College students may declare an optional minor. Minors require a minimum of twenty-eight units of course work, of which at least twenty units must be upper division. Students may apply the equivalent of two upper-division courses (a maximum of eight units) to fulfill the requirements for a minor that have also been used to satisfy the requirements of a major. A formal request for the minor must be approved by the department or program and college by the quarter before graduation.


Quarterly provost’s honors, honors at graduation, departmental honors, and Phi Beta Kappa are awarded to Seventh College students.

Seventh College Honors Program

The Seventh College Honors Program sponsors activities and events designed to introduce students to the pioneering research and innovative scholarship at UC San Diego and in the surrounding community.

Enhancing Your Education

Seventh College encourages students to study abroad, engage in research, internships, and other UC San Diego sponsored educational enrichment programs.