Undergraduate Program


The undergraduate major in Molecular and Cell Biology (MCB) focuses on the study of molecular structures and processes of cellular life and their roles in the function, reproduction, and development of living organisms. This covers a broad range of specialized disciplines, such as biochemistry, microbiology, biophysics, molecular biology, genetics, cell physiology, cell anatomy, immunology, and neurobiology. The types of living organisms from which the departmental faculty draws its working materials are as diverse as its disciplinary specializations, ranging from viruses and microbes through plants, roundworms, annelids, arthropods, and mollusks, to fish, amphibia and mammals. 

There are five emphases to choose from: Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Cell & Developmental Biology, Genetics, Genomics & Development, Immunology & Pathogenesis, and Neurobiology. Information about the emphases, including the lower-division and upper division requirements, can be found on the Major-At-Glance webpage
Career Paths
Students majoring in any of these emphases have been highly successful in entering graduate or medical school and in other science- and health-related careers.  For more information about what our students do with an MCB major, checkout our Career webpage.
UAO Staff advisors are available year-round to help students plan for the upcoming semesters. For more information about how the advisors can help you succeed, please visit the Advising Services webpage.


  • CalCentral Appointments: MCB Advising appointments are available on CalCentral. We will also continue to have drop-in advising every day in VLSB during our open hours. For more information on what types of appointments you can make see our Advising Services page.
  • Undeclared Senior Holds: L&S will soon be placing registration holds on undeclared L&S students who will end Spring 2018 with at least 75 units, not including units for exam credit (e.g., AP test credit). If you receive one of these holds, your course registration will be blocked for Fall 2018; registration for fall starts on April 16. To remove the undeclared student hold, you can either declare a major or meet with a staff advisor to review what requirements remain to be eligible to declare. Please review our page on declaring MCB to learn more about our requirements and declaration process.

Helpful Links

MCB Commencement 2018: The 2018 MCB Undergraduate Commencement Ceremony will be held on Thursday, May 17 at 9am in the Hearst Greek Theatre. Our commencement webpage will be updated as new information is released. Registration is expected to open in mid-March. 

Just accepted to UC Berkeley? Congratulations! We recommend visiting our webpages for new freshmen and new transfer students for more information and frequently asked questions about the major. 

Major Declaration:  Information about declaring the MCB major can be found on the Major Declaration webpage. Major declaration occurs in the fall or spring semesters only. 

FAQS: We've compiled a list of FAQs to answer some of the most common questions we're asked.