Have you heard students saying they are part of the new Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior (NPB) major? Did you know there was a new NPB major? As of Fall 2016, the College of Biological Sciences introduced a new NPB major, which has significant differences from the old NPB major. Therefore, it is very important that a student knows which requirements they are to expected to follow because you cannot combine the requirements from both majors. Some students have the choice of choosing between the two majors while other students must complete requirements for the new major. A student that has been enrolled in UC Davis prior to Fall 2016 has the option of choosing which major they would like to pursue. However, a student that started UC Davis Fall 2016 or later must follow the new NPB requirements, unless they are a transfer student. If the student is a transfer student they have the option of choosing between the two majors if they started college prior to Fall 2016. This blog will further explain the differences between the two majors and provide suggestions to students who are deciding which requirements to follow.
Pre-Fall 2016- “Old” NPB Major
We will start with first going over the old NPB major. The first two years are exactly the same in both majors because students are taking their major prerequisites courses (BIS 2ABC, CHE 2ABC, MAT 17ABC/MAT 21AB, CHE 118 ABC/CHE 8AB, and PHY 7ABC). Other courses that both majors require are STA 100, BIS 101, and either BIS 102 and 103 or BIS 105. After these courses, these two majors have differences in the courses required. For the Pre-Fall 2016 major, a student would need to take BIS 104, NPB 100, 101, 102, NPB lab, and an evolution course (ANT 151, GEL 107, EVE 100). Then, the student has to take at least 12 units from the depth courses list. The depth courses list has many different classes, which allows students to explore and create a unique schedule that would best fit them.
Fall 2016-“NEW” NPB Major
As mentioned before, this major also requires the major prerequisites courses (BIS 2ABC, CHE 2ABC, MAT 17ABC/MAT 21AB, CHE 118 ABC/CHE 8AB, and PHY 7ABC) and STA 100, BIS 101, and either BIS 102 and 103 or Bis 105. The main difference for this major is that it has a new series (NPB 110ABC) and you get to choose a track: Physio, Neuro, or Organism-Environmental Interactions (OEI). This major no longer requires BIS 104 or an evolution course because curriculum from these courses are already included in NPB 110ABC with a focus on how it connects to behavior. Each track has its own set of requirements, such as taking a certain NPB lab and then having to take at least 12 units from the approved list of classes provided. Finally, you have to take at least 3 units from the “Extra Elective” column and that completes the major. This new major allows you to have a more in depth knowledge of either Physio, Neuro, or Organism-Environmental Interactions by taking classes that are more specific to that field, while also allowing you to create your own unique schedule because of the many courses you have to choose from.
- How far along are you on the old vs. the new requirements? Would it be a smooth transition?
- If you are a first or second year, the transition would be very smooth. However, if you are in your third or fourth year you should consider which classes you have already taken.
- Can the classes you have already completed for the old major be used to satisfy requirements for the new major?
- For example, if you already took NPB 100, NPB 101, and BIS 104 it would be best to stick with the old major instead of re-taking the NPB 110 series and receiving limited units. Since the courses (NPB 100 & 101) are very similar to to NPB 110B & C, you will only receive 2 units per course instead of the 5 units.
Frequently Asked Questions:
- I’m a first year/second year student, and I could easily do either major. Which set of major requirements do you recommend? Which one is better?
- Neither is better, and each has its own advantages. For example, the core classes (100, 101, 102) for the old major can be taken out of order, allowing for some more flexibility (NPB 110 ABC must be taken in order).
- Will NPB 110C satisfy requirements for health professions such as PT, RN, or PA school?
- Yes, both NPB 101 and NPB 110C would satisfy the requirement because graduate schools that require a physiology course should accept any upper division physiology course intended for science majors.
- Can I mix and match the old and new major requirements?
- No, and that is why it is very important to figure out which major you want to pursue and stick with it.
The new NPB Major was created because faculty members decided to update the major requirements because of science advantages. However, both majors provide students with a broad NPB education and a rewarding academic experience. If you have any other questions or still having a hard time choosing between the to majors, please do not hesitate to visit the BASC website or a peer/staff advisor at the Biology Academic Success Center!
BASC Peer Advisor
Fourth Year, Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior and Religious Studies Double Major