Transfer Students

The Chemistry and Biochemistry Department welcomes applications from community college students who are prepared to enter as junior-level chemistry majors

Students intending to transfer must complete a set of foundation courses to declare the major.  Students who complete the expected coursework for Chemistry and Biochemistry as outlined in the UC Transfer Pathway will be able to graduate in two years. Students who only complete the minimum major prep/major requirements will take more than two years to complete their degrees.

Specific information and policies regarding transfer pathways for Chemistry or Biochemistry & Molecular Biology degrees at the University of California may be found here:

Students planning to transfer to UCSC as a chemistry major from a California community college should reference to determine which courses are equivalent to these required courses.

California community college students who are prepared for their major and achieve a certain GPA may be eligible for a transfer admissions guarantee (TAG); for more information visit the Transfer Admissions Guarantee (TAG) website.

Important Notes

  • Transfer students are advised to complete the approved equivalent of the full general chemistry series (CHEM 1A, CHEM 1B/M, and CHEM 1C/N at UCSC) at one college or university. Failure to complete the full series of general chemistry at one institution before transferring to UCSC may result in no subject credit or partial credit for the general chemistry series at UCSC. Partial credit may require that the student go back to the previous college/university to complete their general chemistry series. 

  • Not all community colleges offer a full year Organic Chemistry sequence which directly articulates to the required full year UCSC sequence of CHEM 8A, 8B and CHEM 110.  In some cases, students will be required to take CHEM 110 - Intermediate Organic Chemistry even though they have completed a full year of intro Organic Chemistry at a Community College.  

⇐ Please refer to the links at the left for your intended major to view our academic planners and for more information

Students who complete only the minimal introductory coursework as required prior to transfer may be affected in the following ways:

  • May not have enough time to complete their intended degree OR will take longer to complete a degree. 
    Many of our degrees have a large number of requirements. Transfer students are expected to complete their degree in two years (six quarters) and are not allowed to enroll beyond three years (nine quarters). Entering under-prepared will preclude your ability to complete one of our requirement-intensive majors.  

    The recommended preparatory coursework requires at least one academic year to complete. For some of our majors, entering without this coursework will require an additional year to complete a degree.

    Please refer to the Transfer major-preparation academic planning pages (Chemistry; Biochemistry & Molecular Biology/BMB) to learn more details.

  • May have difficulty enrolling in these introductory courses here at UCSC.
    The preparatory courses listed are prerequisite to our upper-division courses. Students cannot enroll in any advanced coursework without having completed them. Here at UCSC, enrollment in these preparatory courses is impacted.

  • May pay significantly more for their education.
    An additional year to complete these preparatory courses will cost significantly more in tuition at UCSC. Students considering entering without their preparatory courses completed will have to pay an additional year of tuition. Students receiving financial support should check with the Financial Aid office to be sure their support can be extended beyond the standard seven quarters as aid packages are often reduced when students extend beyond normative time. We encourage students to compare the cost of completing coursework at a community college with the cost of attending UCSC.

See Also