UC Santa Barbara General CatalogUniversity of California, Santa Barbara

General Subject Area Requirements

The following General Education subject area descriptions and course lists are applicable to students in the College of Letters and Science and the College of Engineering.  To find out the specific number of courses required from each area for a particular college and degree objective, please see the appropriate college's section under "Colleges and Departments":

Note: Additional courses may have been approved to fulfill various General Education Area Requirements after the cut-off date for publication in this catalog. For up-to-date information, students in the College of Letters and Science should refer to the Letters and Science Academic Requirements (LASAR) brochure (available in the UCSB Bookstore), and students in the College of Engineering should refer to the College of Engineering General Engineering Academic (GEAR) Requirements brochure.

English Reading and Composition
Objective: To learn to analyze purposes, audiences, and contexts for writing through study of and practice with writing.

Two courses are required. Writing 2, 2E, or 2LK, and one of the following: Writing 50, 50E, 50LK, 105A-Z, 107A-Z, 109AA-ZZ, or English 10, 10EM, 10LC.

Students must complete Writing 2, 2E, or 2LK by the end of their sixth quarter at UCSB. Further registration will be blocked for students who do not comply. The following courses cannot be dropped after the fifth day of instruction: Writing 1, 1E, 1LK, 2, 2E, 2LK, 50, 50E, 50LK. In addition, students cannot enroll in and receive credit for these courses (or their equivalents taken at another institution) until they have fulfilled the Entry Level Writing Requirement.

Foreign Language
(College of Letters and Science only)

Objective: To display basic familiarity with a written and/or spoken foreign language appropriate to the discipline.

The foreign language requirement may be satisfied in one of the following four ways:

  1. By completing foreign language level 3 (third quarter) at UCSB or its equivalent at another college or university. Students fulfilling Area B with this method will require 184 overall units to fulfill degree requirements.
  2. By achieving a score of 3 or higher on the College Board Advanced Placement Examination in a foreign language, or by earning a score of 5 or higher on a higher level International Baccalaureate Exam in a foreign language, or by earning one of the following minimum scores on the Foreign Language SAT II: Chinese with Listening—570; French/French with Listening—590; German/German with Listening—570; Modern Hebrew—500; Italian—570; Japanese with Listening—570; Korean with Listening —550; Latin—580; Spanish/Spanish with Listening—570.
  3. By completing the third year of one language in high school with a grade-point average for third-year language of at least C.
  4. By passing a UCSB foreign language placement examination at the appropriate level.

Science, Mathematics, and Technology (College of Letters and Science only)
Objective: To understand methods and applications of science and mathematics, apply them to problems, and describe solutions using language appropriate to the discipline.

Social Science
Objective: To apply perspectives, theories, and methods of social science research to understand what motivates, influences, and/or determines the behaviors of individuals, groups, and societies. Area D courses are based upon systematic studies of human behavior, which may include observation, experimentation, deductive reasoning, and quantitative analysis.

Culture and Thought

Objective: To learn to situate and investigate questions about world cultures through the study of human history and thought and to learn about the roles that citizens play in the construction and negotiation of human history and cultures.

Objective: To develop an appreciation of fine and performing arts, popular arts, and visual culture and to express relationships between arts and historical or cultural contexts.

Objective: To learn to analyze texts using methods appropriate to literary study and to situate analysis within contexts where texts circulate.

Foreign Language (College of Engineering only)
Objective: To help students gain a familiarity with a foreign language.

Courses applicable to these requirements are listed below: