Summer Abroad Japan - Courses

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Life Sciences in Japan

UC Davis Summer Abroad is an academic program that aims to enhance students’ education by incorporating both traditional lectures with experiential learning outside of the classroom setting. Students will earn 8* quarter units in four weeks; therefore, students should expect a rigorous academic course work that is enriched by both the program’s location(s) and activities. Auditing is not an option. 

Students on Summer Abroad programs earn regular UC Davis course credit which may be used to fulfill degree, major, minor, General Education (GE) requirements. UC Davis students can use Summer Abroad courses to fulfill their academic requirements as listed in the General Catalog. Students from other campuses should consult with the academic advisors from their home campuses to determine whether courses taken on our programs may be used to fulfill their specific academic requirements. 

See Academics to learn more about applying Summer Abroad coursework toward your major/minor/General Education requirements. 

* Semester students who will apply for Summer Financial Aid should contact Summer Abroad to inquire about enrolling in an additional unit.


Biological Sciences (BIS) 102 and 198 - Draft Syllabus (PDF)


Biological Sciences (BIS) 102. Structure & Function of Biomolecules (3 units)

Structure and function of macromolecules with emphasis on proteins, catalysis, enzyme kinetics, lipids, membranes, and proteins as machines. Only one unit of credit for students who have completed Animal Biology 102 & 1.5 units of credit for students who have completed Biological Science 105. GE credit: SciEng | QL, SE


TUTORS ONLY: Molecular and Cellular Biology (MCB) 197T. Tutoring in Molecular and Cellular Biology (3 units, Pass/No Pass grading only)

Prerequisite: upper division standing, completion of course to be tutored, and consent of instructor. Assisting the instructor in one of the section’s regular courses by tutoring individual or small groups of students in a laboratory, in voluntary discussion groups, or other voluntary course activities. May be repeated for credit.


Biological Sciences (BIS) 198. Directed Group Study (5 units, P/NP grading only)

This course includes participation on excursions and tours and attendance to guest lectures. Students are often asked to write reflective pieces. Assignment topics vary by program.

The program schedule, including the daily itinerary and planned activities, are subject to change at the discretion of the instructor.


Summer Abroad will be enforcing the completion of BIS 2A and CHE 8A or 118A or 128A. For visiting students: one semester or one quarter of a first year biology series, and one semester or one quarter of organic chemistry before departure. Prerequisites can only be waived by individualized consent of instructor—please contact the instructor if you wish to discuss this option. Failure to complete unwaived prerequisites can result in administrative withdrawal and fees owed accordingly.

BIS 2A. Introduction to Biology: Essentials of Life on Earth (5)Lecture—3 hours; discussion—2 hours. Essentials of life including sources and use of energy, information storage, responsiveness to natural selection and cellularity. Origin of life and influence of living things on the chemistry of the Earth. Not open for credit to students who have completed course 1A with a grade of C- or better. GE credit: SciEng | SE.—F, W, S, Su. (F, W, S, Su.) 

CHE 8A. Organic Chemistry: Brief Course (2)Lecture—2 hours. Prerequisite: C- or better in course 2B or 2BH. With course 8B, an introduction to the nomenclature, structure, chemistry, and reaction mechanisms of organic compounds. Intended for students majoring in areas other than organic chemistry. No credit to students who have completed courses 118A or 128A. GE credit: SciEng |SE.—F, S. (F, S.) 

CHE 118A. Organic Chemistry for Health and Life Sciences (4)Lecture—3 hours; laboratory/discussion—1.5 hours. Prerequisite: course 2C or 2CH with a grade C- or higher. The 118A, 118B, 118C series is for students planning professional school studies in health and life sciences. A rigorous, in-depth presentation of basic principles with emphasis on stereochemistry and spectroscopy and preparations and reactions of nonaromatic hydrocarbons, haloalkanes, alcohols and ethers.—F, W, S. (F, W, S.)

CHE 128A. Organic Chemistry (3)Lecture—3 hours. Prerequisite: course 2C with a grade of C or higher; chemistry majors should enroll in course 129A concurrently. Introduction to the basic concepts of organic chemistry with emphasis on stereochemistry and the chemistry of hydrocarbons. Designed primarily for majors in chemistry.—F, W. (F, W.)