GEL books

Planning your GEL Major

The information here is provided for your convenience; classes are subject to change. Please speak with a Geology major advisor for the latest information on a geology major study plan. These are just major classes, so be sure to check MyDegree.ucdavis.edu for any additional degree requirements, including General Education and your College English Composition Requirement (UWP 104E is recommended).

GEL Upper Division Electives

The following classes are recommended for those who intend to pursue graduate degrees but are not necessarily required for the Bachelor of Science degree in Geology: MAT 21D, MAT 22B, PHY 9D

GEL Upper Division Electives list:
2019-20202018-2019 | 2017-2018 (pdf)
The upper division electives are not restricted to geology courses but must be chosen to provide a relevant, coherent, and in-depth program of study.

  • Choose from courses GEL 130-194 or pre-selected non-GEL courses.

  • Only one of GEL/EDU 181 or 183 or 185A or 185B or 186 may be applied toward elective credit.

  • No more than three units of upper division elective credit for courses GEL 115-120.

  • No more than six units of upper division elective credit for GEL 192 or 194A-B or 194HA-HB.

    • Students who receive approval to do a senior thesis for part of the capstone requirement may not use 194A-B or 194HA-HB for the upper division elective courses.

  • Pre-selected non-GEL courses:
    • CHE 100 – Environmental Water Chemistry (3 units)
    • ECI 171+171L – Soil Mechanics (5 units)
    • ECI 175 – Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering (4 units)
    • ESM 100 – Principles of Hydrologic Science (4 units)
    • ESM 186 – Environmental Remote Sensing (5 units)
    • ESP 152 – Coastal Oceanography (3 units)
    • HYD 144 – Groundwater Hydrology (4 units)
    • HYD 146 – Hydrogeology and Contaminant Transport (5 units)
    • LDA 150/ABT 150 – Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (4 units)
    • Cross-enrollment online class at UCLA: Geography 168 – Intermediate GIS (4 units) (this course counts as UC Davis’ LDA/ABT 150, so students cannot take both)
    • SSC 100 – Principles of Soil Science (5 units)
    • WFC 102+102L – Ecogeomorphology (1 unit) / Lab (6 units)
    • Other courses in related fields must be approved in advance by the major advisor.

Geology Major Sample Academic Plans

Classes in italics must stay in the quarter they’re listed, although not necessarily in the year listed.
Sample GEL Academic Plans (pdf)

Year 1

  • Fall Quarter Total: 8-9 units
    • Math 16A or 17A or 21A: Calculus (3-4)
    • Chemistry 2A: General Chemistry (5)
  • Winter Quarter Total: 8-9 units
    • Math 16B or 17B or 21B: Calculus (3-4)
    • Chemistry 2B: General Chemistry (5)
  • Spring Quarter Total: 8-9 units
    • Math 16C or 17C: Calculus (3-4)
    • Geology 50: Physical Geology (3)
    • Geology 50L: Physical Geology Lab (2)

Year 2

  • Fall Quarter Total: 7-11 units
    • Math 22A: Linear Algebra (3) - unless doing 17 series
    • Geology 53: Geobiology (3)
    • Physics 7A or 9A: Physics (4-5)
  • Winter Quarter Total: 7-8 units
    • Geology 55: Geochemistry (3)
    • Physics 7B or 9B: Physics (4-5)
  • Spring Quarter Total: 8 units
    • Geology 56: Geophysics (4)
    • STA 13 or 32 or 100: Statistics (4)

Year 3 and 4 Option 1

Structure Coursework first

Junior - Structure Coursework

  • Fall Quarter Total: 7 units
    • Geology 60: Earth Materials (4)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3) 
  • Winter Quarter Total: 8 units
    • Geology 101: Structural Geology (3)
    • Geology 101L: Structural Geology Lab (2)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
  • Spring Quarter Total: 9 units
    • Geology 103: Field Geology (4)
    • Geology 109: Sediments and Strata (3)
    • Geology 109L: Sediments and Strata Lab (2)
  • Summer Total: 0-8 units
    • Geology 110A: Summer Field Geology (4)*

SeniorPetrology Coursework

  • Fall Quarter Total: 7-8 units
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
  • Winter Quarter Total: 12 units
    • Geology 105: Igneous Rocks (4)
    • Geology 107: Paleobiology (3)
    • Geology 107L: Paleobiology (2)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
  • Spring Quarter Total: 6 units
    • Geology 108: Paleoclimates (3)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
  • Summer Total: 0-8 units
    • Geology 110B: Summer Field Geology (4)*
    • Geology 110C: Summer Field Geology (4)*

*Choose two; can be taken over multiple summers or during same summer

Year 3 and 4 Option 2

Petrology Coursework first

Junior - Petrology Coursework

  • Fall Quarter Total: 7 units
    • Geology 60: Earth Materials (4)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
  • Winter Quarter Total: 10 units
    • Geology 105: Igneous Rocks (4)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
  • Spring Quarter Total: 7 units
    • Geology 109: Sediments and Strata (2)
    • Geology 109L: Sediments and Strata Lab (2)
  • Summer Total: 0-8 units
    • Geology 110B: Summer Field Geology (4)*

Senior - Structure Coursework

  • Fall Quarter Total: 11 units
    • Geology 107: Paleobiology (3)
    • Geology 107L: Paleobiology Lab (2)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
  • Winter Quarter Total: 8 units
    • Geology 101: Structural Geology (3)
    • Geology 101L: Structural Geology Lab (2)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
  • Spring Quarter Total: 10 units
    • Geology 103: Field Geology (4)
    • Geology 108: Paleoclimates (3)
    • Upper Division Geology Elective (3)
  • Summer Total: 0-8 units
    • Geology 110A: Summer Field Geology (4)*
    • Geology 110C: Summer Field Geology (4)*

*Choose two; can be taken over multiple summers or during same summer