Majoring in Entomology

The Entomology major is a general biological science program. The curriculum is designed to develop an understanding of fundamental biological concepts by studying insects. Insects offer unique opportunities to study biological systems and are model experimental animals. Many insects are either pests, or beneficial species that have great importance to the economy, environment or public health. Students may focus on specific areas of interest including agricultural entomology, insect systematics and evolution; behavior and ecology; medical entomology; and insect molecular biology, physiology and toxicology

The Program

Students begin their study in entomology with selected insect biology courses. After completing these courses, students may enroll in courses in their particular area of interest. The Entomology Faculty encourages students to do research internships in their laboratories.

Career Goals & Opportunities

Entomology graduates find careers in many different areas of applied or basic biology. Graduates have the opportunity to continue in professional graduate programs such as veterinary or human medicine, or get advanced degrees leading to careers in biotechnology, conservation biology, or academic teaching and research. Many graduates have participated in internship programs with the California Department of Food and Agriculture and found careers in insect diagnostic laboratories, conducting insect surveys, and/or developing entomological collections. Other graduates have worked in agriculture in the area of insect pest management. Graduates are prepared for managerial and technical positions with state and federal agencies and in agricultural production and supporting industries. Some entomology graduates pursue careers in primary, secondary, and college level science education.

Minoring in Entomology

The Department of Entomology has five minor programs open to students in other disciplines who are interested in rounding out their academic study with a concentration in the area of entomology.

See Major and Minor Requirements for a full list of required courses.

California Pest Control Advisor Education Requirements

Click here to download the requirements

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What do I need to declare a double major? 

We advise you to meet with both the Entomology Academic Advisor and the Academic Advisors in the major you’re intending to double major in. Both advisors can help create academic plans that will capture the major requirements needed in each program. Before a double major petition can be approved, an Academic Plan (found under the ‘Forms & Petitions’ tab on your OASIS) needs to be submitted and reviewed by the Entomology advisors.

If you’re planning to add another major from a different college (College of Biological Sciences, College of Engineering, or College of Letters & Science), you may want to also check in with the Dean’s Offices of that college to make sure you’re able to fulfill the college requirements. In order to graduate with both majors, you will need to not only complete the major requirements for both but also the college requirements in each respective college.

You can submit a petition to double major through your OASIS portal. Under the ‘Forms & Petitions’ tab, click ‘Submit a New Form’. One of the form options is ‘Change of Major’ and there will be an option to ‘Declare Multiple Majors’. When this form is submitted, both major advisors will review your progress and projected classes and can approve when ready. 

How do I declare a minor?

The process of declaring a minor first starts with meeting with the academic advisor in the minor you're interested in. The academic advisor can help with organizing courses in your academic plan to fulfill minor requirements and keep you under the 225 unit cap. The actual minor declaration form can be found on your OASIS student portal. Under the 'Forms & Petitions' tab, there is a button labelled "Submit a New Form" and an option of "Minor Declaration". Use this form to document all the courses you have taken. Students are advised to declare their minor(s) after they have registered for the last course required for the minor. Submitting a minor declaration form prior to registering for the final course may not be reviewed by the academic advisor of the department until the final course has been registered. The last day to file a minor declaration form is no later than the deadline for applying for graduation. 

Note: You may only share one course toward both your major and minor requirements.