Although Environmental Studies does not have a "pre-major" that must be completed before applying, students should complete at least one of the lower-division Environmental Studies courses (ENV S 1, 2, or 3) and at least two additional lower-division course required as part of the Preparation for the Major. Exceptions for those who are currently enrolled in one of the above courses or for other extreme circumstances will be considered. There is no minimum GPA requirement to declare a major in Environmental Studies. A student should just be in good academic standing (overall GPA of 2.0 or higher) at the time they submit the change of major forms.

Freshman are discouraged from declaring or changing majors (including undeclared students) until they have completed a minimum of two quarters at UCSB (one quarter for Transfer students). Exceptions can be made for those who are trying to enroll in a course that requires a student to be declared in a major that requires such course(s) as a requirement (i.e. Chemistry 1A/AL).

The change of major process takes on average three to four weeks. An email will be sent to you once Environmental Studies has signed off on your forms and sent them to the College of Registrar for a final review. You will then need to check GOLD to see when your change of major has been finalized.

If you have any questions please email advising@es.ucsb.edu or visit the ES Academic Advisor in Bren 4313. 


Environmental Studies has redesigned its B.A. and B.S. degree requirements for the 2020-21 academic year. Please visit the Degrees Offered webpage to learn more about the differences between each degree, and the new and old requirements. Students are eligible to change from the previous requirements to the 2020-21 requirements, by following the process below. Once you have identified the degree you would like to pursue, please click on the corresponding link below. Each link is specific and only works for the degree option listed, so be sure it is the correct one. Then, please fill out the form via DocuSign. Once you complete the document it will be submitted for department approval. You will receive a copy automatically once all advisors have signed the petition.


Change your Major to the 2019-2020 Requirements

If you are of Junior Standing or higher and would like to change your major to the 2019-2020 requirements for any of our B.A. or B.S. degrees, you are welcome to request this change. We ask that you look at the new 2020-2021 requirements first, because in most situations the new requirements will benefit you. If you have not completed sufficient coursework towards the 2019-2020 track, Environmental Studies may deny your request and require you to enroll in the 2020-2021 requirements.

  1. Review the major worksheet of the major your intend to declare (available here),
  2. Complete a Change of Major Petition. Be sure to indicate if you are pursuing the B.A. or B.S. for the Environmental Studies major or which emphasis for the Hydrological Sciences and Policy (available here),
  3. Submit all forms to advising@es.ucsb.edu

Double Majors

Please follow the process outlined under "Change of Major to the 2019-2020 Requirements" to download the change of major petition. If you are declaring or adding a double major, you are required to also fill out an additional Memo of Understanding for Double Majors Petition. This petition can be found in the Letters & Science Advising Office in Cheadle Hall and the Environmental Studies Main Office (Bren 4312) & Advising Office (Bren 4313). 

Memo of Understanding for Double Majors - (Offsite link)

Over 200 Units

If you are going to go over 200 total units prior to earning your degree and will be at UCSB for more than 4 years (started as a Freshman) or two years (Transfer Students), you must complete a Proposed Schedule of Graduation Petition. On the form, you must:

  • Explain why you need additional units and time at UCSB,
  • Provide a quarter-by-quarter plan to fulfill your remaining requirements for graduation, and
  • Obtain the endorsement of the departmental advisor in your major(s) and minor (if you are pursuing one).

 Proposed Schedule for Graduation - (Offsite link)