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UC Merced Extends Application Deadline, Offers More New Majors, Minors

December 11, 2006

UC Merced Extends Application Deadline, Offers More New Majors, Minors

Prospective students have plenty of time to explore UC Merced’s newest offerings for fall 2007 political science and history because the application deadline has been extended until Jan. 31, 2007.

UC Merced joins a number of other UC campuses in allowing extra time for fall 2007 applicants to discover some of the schools’ new educational tracks.

The two new majors add to UC Merced’s growing list of programs, joining this fall’s additions, economics and cognitive science. The university has also added two new minors in political science and anthropology for fall 2007, and other programs, such as literature, are in development.

Every program at UC Merced is interdisciplinary. For example, all history students whether they choose American or world history emphases will take two breadth courses that are related but outside the history curriculum in their junior or senior years.

In addition, the faculty members who’ve developed the new programs have created opportunities for students to learn more and get more experience than they would at a university with a larger student population.

History students will each have an applied research requirement in their junior years, and will each complete a senior thesis.

That allows them to pursue their own interests in depth, explore possible careers and graduate with a major piece of original research, said Professor Ruth Mostern.

The political science major is has been developed within the last several months by two new faculty members, Thomas Hansford and Stephen Nicholson.

Hansford said the program will be a modern look at political science and will feature student research and data analysis.

We want students to understand where data and information comes from and how it is obtained, Hansford said. It will be a very social-scientific major.

The interdisciplinary component, like the history program, will include two upper-division courses related, but outside the major. Hansford said UC Merced has all these great courses, and he and Nicholson want students to round out their major with such choices as cognitive science, political economics or maybe a course called The Essence of Decision, which look at how some of the most impactful decisions have been made.

Professors in the School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts are also excited about cognitive science and economics. Cognitive science faculty emphasis that their field is in high demand these days, and economics professors say their major is a good base for a variety of careers, from public service in government to law, nonprofit work and more.

It teaches that methodical, logical thinking that you need, said professor Todd Neumann.

For more information about faculty and majors, visit the UC Merced Web site at Click on Fall 2007 Majors or pull down the faculty menu along the top of the page.

For information about the admissions process and to fill out online applications before Jan. 31, visit