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The Division of Physical & Biological Sciences at the University of California Santa Cruz is a world-leading research university responsible for some of humanity’s most high-impact discoveries

High-impact science overview video
The UC Santa Cruz Division of Physical & Biological Sciences is a world-leading public research university with a reputation for instigating some of humanity’s most high-impact discoveries and empowering students with immersive research experiences since 1965. We’re a part of the University of California. Our mission is to serve society through “transmitting advanced knowledge, discovering new knowledge, and functioning as an active working repository of organized knowledge” in the physical & biological sciences. Here’s our impact on the world:
Rankings

#3
Global rank for research influence by citation index (2018)

#4
National rank in cell biology & anatomical sciences (2019)

#5
Global rank in environment & ecology by citation index (2017)

#9
Global rank in space science (2020)

#10
National rank in geophysics & seismology (2018)

#19
National rank in Earth science (2019)

#19
National rank in ecology & evolution (2019)

#26
National rank for Earth & environmental sciences research output (2019)

#37
Global rank in physics (2019)

Other high achievements & top programs

Displayed rankings do not constitute or imply endorsement, recommendation, or favoring from UC Santa Cruz, the Division of Physical & Biological Sciences, or any of its employees or contractors acting on its behalf.
Alumni
The UC Santa Cruz Division of Physical & Biological Sciences has more than 31,000 alumni, 63% of which are living and working in California. All of them make an impact. Visit our impactful alumni page to explore their world-changing accomplishments.

~31,000
Science alumni making an impact on the world as of 2017

63%
Science alumni living and working in California as of 2017

24%
Alumni with a MCD Biology degree as of 2017

Faculty & researcher honors
The foundation of the UC Santa Cruz Division of Physical & Biological Sciences is built by 180 distinguished faculty and approximately 300 high-impact researchers. Visit our faculty honors page for the full list.

1
National Medal of Science

1
Nobel Laureate

1
Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences

12
National Academy of Sciences members

20
American Academy of Arts & Sciences members

2
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigators

1
Bower Award & Prize for Achievement in Science

1
MacArthur Foundation Fellow

8
Packard Foundation Fellows

Academics
The Division of Physical & Biological Sciences is the largest academic division at UC Santa Cruz. We service a quarter of the student body with 52 high-impact science degree programs and boundless student research experiences that have empowered more than 31,000 science alumni.

9
Academic departments dedicated to teaching and research

3
Professional graduate programs and training tracks

27
Undergraduate science degree programs

25
Graduate science degree programs

16:1
Undergraduate student to faculty ratio (2018)

.27:1
Master student to faculty ratio (2018)

3:1
Ph.D. student to faculty ratio (2018)

3.94
Admitted freshman average GPA (2018)

88.5%
Transfer students accepted from California (2019)

20.4%
Graduate degree acceptance rate (2019)

980
Bachelor degrees awarded annually (2018)

118
Graduate degrees awarded annually (2019)

Displayed numbers reflect the latest isolated data for the Division of Physical & Biological Sciences provided by the Institutional Research, Assessment, & Policy Studies (IRAPS) unit of the Office of Planning & Budget.
Student body
The Division of Physical & Biological Sciences services a quarter of the student body at UC Santa Cruz. We strive to support a diverse student body. We provide learning tools, resources, and support programs that enrich our student’s educational goals in and out of the classroom.

4,800
Enrolled undergraduate students, 23% of the UC Santa Cruz undergraduate student body (2018)

585
Enrolled graduate students, 31% of the UC Santa Cruz graduate student body (2018)

23%
First-generation college student enrollment (2018)

55%
Women undergraduate student enrollment (2018)

42.4%
Women graduate student enrollment (2018)

69.3%
Undergraduate students who identify as nonwhite (2018)

41.2%
Graduate students who identify as nonwhite (2018)

29.2%
Undergraduate students who identify as Hispanic/Latino (2018)

88.5%
Transfer students accepted from California (2019)

Displayed numbers reflect the latest isolated data for the Division of Physical & Biological Sciences provided by the Institutional Research, Assessment, & Policy Studies (IRAPS) unit of the Office of Planning & Budget.
Economic impact
The Division of Physical & Biological Sciences is the largest economic driver at UC Santa Cruz. We constitute more than half of the university’s annual research and development funding.

55%
UC Santa Cruz received $689.8 million in sponsored research and development from 2013–19. During this time, the Division of Physical & Biological Sciences and our research institutes accounted for $376.43 million or 55% of the university’s total output.

$24.5m
According to the National Science Foundation, in 2017 UC Santa Cruz ranked 40th for research and development expenditures in “geosciences, atmospheric sciences, and ocean sciences.”

16th
According to the National Science Foundation, UC Santa Cruz is in the top 16.6 percentile for national research and development expenditures and in the top 11.8 percentile for federal research obligations as of 2017.

30%
Faculty and researchers in the Division of Physical & Biological Sciences were granted 29 patents, or 30% of the patients at UC Santa Cruz, for their groundbreaking research from 2013–18. See the full list of technologies available from the University of California.

#1
UC Santa Cruz is the top employer based in Santa Cruz County. The Division of Physical & Biological Sciences is one of the largest employers at UC Santa Cruz, with nearly 850 team members (~21% of all employees).

$29.6m
According to the National Science Foundation, in 2018 UC Santa Cruz ranked 50th for research and development expenditures in “physical sciences.”

$1.3b
According to the UC Santa Cruz 2011–12 Economic Impact Report, the campus generates $1.3 billion in economic activity within the greater Santa Cruz region.

$242m
According to the UC Santa Cruz 2011–12 Economic Impact Report, faculty and staff spent more than $242 million in the greater Monterey Bay area during 2011–12.

$178m
According to the UC Santa Cruz 2011–12 Economic Impact Report, students spent more than $178 million in the greater Monterey Bay area during 2011–12.

Leadership
The UC Santa Cruz Division of Physical & Biological Sciences is headed by award-winning scholars who publish high-impact research, mentor students, and manage the success of the university’s largest research and academic division.
Paul Koch
Paul Koch
Dean of Physical & Biological Sciences
Distinguished Professor of Earth & Planetary Sciences

Grant Herzog
Grant Hartzog
Associate Dean of Academics
Professor of Molecular, Cell, & Developmental Biology

Doug Kellogg
Doug Kellogg
Associate Dean of Biology
Professor of Molecular, Cell, & Developmental Biology

Administrative leadership

Scott Stalnaker
Executive Assistant to the Dean
Sarah Barron
Assistant Dean of Planning & Resource Management
Carrie Häber
Assistant Dean of Planning & Academic Programs
Nicolle Laird
Assistant Dean of Planning & Personnel
Ryan Kallabis
Assistant Director of Communications
Branwyn Wagman
Senior Director of Philanthropy

Dean’s Council

The Dean’s Council advises UC Santa Cruz Science leadership on how to increase fundraising, enhance research, and develop career opportunities for students and alumni. Council members serve as ambassadors in alumni, business, nonprofit, government, and community relations.

Rachael Spencer
Council Chair & Cabrillo College Trustee
Richard Bader
Tech Entrepreneur
Peter Cartwright
Energy Executive
Peter Coha
Engineering Automation
Brent Constantz
Silicon Valley entrepreneur
Federico Faggin
Physicist, Inventor, & Entrepreneur
Russell Ivanhoe
Entrepreneur & Cardiologist
Kristen Tibbitts Marinovic
Trustee of the UCSC Foundation Board
David Morrell
Real Estate Expert
For a list of department leadership and program directors, visit our faculty and researchers page. For a list of our division and department staff, visit our administrative staff director page.

Locations

Our nine academic departments and three international research institutes are responsible for some of the most pivotal scientific discoveries during the last 50 years. We accomplish this world-changing work at two breathtaking campuses overlooking the Monterey Bay in Santa Cruz, California.

Main Campus, “Science Hill”

Satellite locations

Natural Reserve System
Observatories
Westside Research Park