UC Santa Barbara General CatalogUniversity of California, Santa Barbara

Degrees and Majors

Students may earn the bachelor of arts degree in Creative Studies with a major in art, biology, chemistry/biochemistry, literature, mathematics, music composition, or physics. They may also earn the bachelor of science degree in Creative Studies with a major in chemistry/biochemistry, computer science, mathematics, or physics. Qualified students may apply to earn the bachelor of science/master of science degrees in computer science (with the B.S. earned in CCS and the M.S. in the College of Engineering).

All CCS students will have mid-academic-career progress checks with the faculty in their respective majors. The form, content, and timing of this review varies by major and the student’s class standing at the time of admission to CCS. Students not making satisfactory progress as determined by the faculty may be asked to leave their major in CCS.


Serious students who want to be artists may consider the CCS art program, where they will work with professionals in the areas of painting, sculpture, or book arts. The faculty consists of working artists, selected on the basis of the recognized quality of their art. The program emphasizes development of individual, literate artists.


Students interested in laboratory and field research might wish to consider the CCS biology program. It is designed to meet the needs of students who show promise of being able to begin advanced work early in their undergraduate careers. Biology students are expected to engage in independent research from the first year on.

Chemistry & Biochemistry

This program is ideal for students who are impatient to get into the laboratory and begin research in chemistry or biochemistry. Undergraduates in the CCS major can extend their study of chemistry and biochemistry to a level of inquiry usually associated with graduate school, as they build a foundation of fundamentals and participate in research projects.

Computer Science

The CCS computer science major provides an accelerated curriculum covering mathematical foundations and programming techniques, quickly leading to more advanced upper-division courses. The broad spectrum of upper-division courses that are offered provides both depth and breadth necessary for future research in computer science.


The literature program is for students who have a genuine passion for reading and writing. The readings include major literary figures, periods and genres represented in English, American, and foreign literatures (both in translation and in the original). There are also creative writing courses that emphasize both verse and narrative prose.


The CCS mathematics program is a special curriculum designed to provide a format for aspiring mathematicians to discuss and solve non-routine problems in the various areas of mathematics. The curriculum was developed to accommodate students who are able to move to a high level of mathematical inquiry at a pace faster than the usual university curriculum would allow.

Music Composition

The CCS music composition program concentrates on various idioms and techniques of twentieth-century music as they are used in “serious” or “concert hall” works. The instructors are working composers who are concerned with helping students develop their compositional abilities through tutorials, small seminars, and special projects.


This program is for physics students with inquisitive minds. Participation is a key factor in the classroom, developing students’ physical intuition and honing the ability to think on one’s feet. The CCS physics program is designed to develop breadth and depth of understanding and provide a solid preparation for undergraduate research and graduate work.