John Muir College admitted its first students in the fall of 1967 and moved to its present quarters in 1970. The college was named for John Muir (1838–1914), a Scottish immigrant who became a famous California naturalist, conservationist, and author. Muir explored much of North America, including the Sierra Nevada and Alaska, and worked for many years for the cause of conservation and the establishment of national parks and forests. Please visit our website at http://muir.ucsd.edu.
Inspired by John Muir’s remarkable life, Muir College stresses the spirit of individual choice and responsibility within the framework of a strong and supportive community. It encourages awareness of environmental issues and involvement in environmental preservation and sustainability both on and off campus. The interdisciplinary minor in environmental studies was started and continues to flourish at Muir College. By these and other means, the college maintains the heritage of the remarkable man for whom it was named.
To receive a degree of bachelor of arts or bachelor of science, a Muir College student must
General-education requirements at Muir College include the completion of one three-quarter sequence from each of the following categories:
In addition, students must complete Category III, which consists of two three-quarter sequences chosen from two of the three following areas:
Courses must be chosen from approved three-course sequences in each area of general education. Approved sequences are listed on the Muir College website at http://muir.ucsd.edu/academics/degree_reqs.html.
Units obtained from advanced placement or International Baccalaureate exams may be applied toward the 180 units needed for graduation, but may only be used toward general-education requirements as noted on the campus AP chart or IB Chart.
Up to three courses from a student’s major may be used to satisfy general-education requirements.
Muir College students must complete a two-course sequence in critical thinking, rhetorical analysis, and expository writing. Students fulfill this requirement with MCWP 40 and MCWP 50. Advanced placement or international baccalaureate credit does not satisfy either course.
IGETC-certified transfer students must complete one writing course (MCWP 125) or may request to use MCWP 50 instead.
The writing courses must be taken for a letter grade. Priority enrollment is given to students admitted as freshmen for their first six quarters only, and for transfer students, for their first three. After the priority period, all students will have to wait until their second pass to enroll in Muir College Writing Program courses. Delaying the Muir writing courses may make it harder to graduate on time.
Minors are optional. They require a minimum of twenty-eight units of course work, of which at least twenty units must be upper division. Students may use a maximum of eight units of upper-division credit from their major to satisfy minor requirements. A formal request for the minor must be approved by the department or program and college by the quarter before graduation.
A student may declare a double major upon the approval of both departments and the Muir College academic advising office. Students must be in good academic standing and still graduate within the maximum time frame allowed for undergraduates.
A student must have a cumulative grade point average (GPA) in UC letter-graded courses of 2.0 or higher to graduate. Students with a term or cumulative GPA below 2.0 will be subject to either academic probation or academic disqualification. (See Academic Regulations and Policies.)
With the exception of units earned in independent study courses (numbered 199), no more than 25 percent of an undergraduate student’s total UC San Diego units may be taken on a Pass/Not Pass basis. MCWP 40, 50, and 125 must be taken for a letter grade. Students are advised to check with their major or minor department before taking a course on a Pass/Not Pass basis.
The Muir Special Project (MSP) major is a bachelor of arts degree intended for students who have specific talents and interests that are not accommodated by one of the existing campus majors. Each proposal and senior thesis or project must be approved by the Muir College provost, and students must have a minimum 3.25 UC GPA to qualify for the MSP major. The major includes both regular course work and independent study representing up to fifteen upper-division four-unit courses as well as a project or thesis. The project may be one of two kinds: creative work of some sort (e.g., a book of poetry, a collection of musical compositions) or a detailed program of study and research in a particular area. A tenured member of the UC San Diego faculty must serve as an adviser to a student doing the project. For a course to be included as part of a Muir Special Project, the student must earn in it a grade of C– or better.
There is no MSP minor available.
The environmental studies minor offers students from every major a basic grounding in the scientific, technical, social, and cultural issues presented by the interaction of human beings with their environment and the need to build a more environmentally sustainable future. For more information, visit http://muir.ucsd.edu/minors/index.html.
Quarterly provost’s honors, departmental honors, Latin honors, membership in the Caledonian Society of John Muir College, and Phi Beta Kappa honors are awarded. Graduating seniors must have letter grades for seventy-two units of letter-graded course work at the University of California to qualify for Latin honors.
Students may enhance their undergraduate education by participating in the UC Education Abroad Program (EAP) and Opportunities Abroad Program (OAP) while still making regular progress toward graduation. Interested students should contact the Study Abroad Office and visit the website at http://studyabroad.ucsd.edu. Financial aid recipients may apply aid to the EAP program, and special study abroad scholarships are available. Many programs are now available for sophomores, as well as juniors and seniors. With careful planning, students should be able to fulfill some general-education, major, and/or minor requirements while studying abroad.