University Communications and Public Affairs


Undergraduate Disciplinary Areas

Undergraduates in class
By student population
28.6% Social Sciences
21.3% Biology
19.7% Engineering
18.6% Science and Mathematics
4.5% Arts and Humanities
16.6% Special/Undeclared

Top 5 Undergraduate Majors

By student population
21.3% Biology
8.2% Mathematics
7.5% Economics
7.3% Computer Science and Engineering
4.5% Chemistry

Research Impact

UC San Diego researchers
$1.16 Billion UC San Diego received $1.160 billion in sponsored research support in fiscal year 2016-17 (July1-June 30), a three percent increase from the previous year.
1st Three doctoral programs—Biological Sciences, Bioengineering and Scripps Oceanography—are ranked 1st in the nation according to the results of the 2010 National Research Council Data-Based Assessment of Research-Doctorate Programs, conducted every ten years.
2nd Nature ranked UC San Diego 2nd in the U.S. and 3rd worldwide among academic institutions in earth and environmental research based on total contribution to studies published in major science journals in 2016.
4 Scripps Institution of Oceanography operates three research vessels and an innovative Floating Instrument Platform (FLIP). In 2016, the Navy-owned R/V Sally Ride became the newest addition to the Scripps Fleet.
5th UC San Diego currently ranks 5th in the nation and 1st among UC campuses for total research and development expenditures by the National Science Foundation.
6th UC San Diego was ranked 6th in the nation for total research output by the journal Nature in their 2016 index.
6th UC San Diego ranked 6th among leading research institutions in the world by Nature Index for “high-quality science,” based on its research publications in highly selective science journals in 2017.
12th UC San Diego was named 12th best research university in the nation and 25th best college in the world by the Centre for Science and Technology Studies of Leiden University in their 2017 report that measured scientific impact of universities worldwide.
14th In 2017, the journal Nature named UC San Diego the world’s 14th best university for developing research that is used to create products or services that benefit society and spur economic growth.

2019 U.S. News and World Report Rankings

UC San Diego musicians
“America’s Best Graduate Schools Guidebook”
Fine Arts Time-based media/new media (3rd), fine arts (13th).
Engineering Biomedical/bioengineering (2nd), best engineering school (12th).
Health Sciences Drug and alcohol abuse research (10th), primary care (17th), School of Medicine research program (22nd), pharmacy (25th) and clinical psychology (25th).
Sciences Discrete mathematics and combinatorics (3rd), neuroscience/neurobiology (5th), plasma physics (7th), geophysics and seismology (8th), biochemistry (10th), computer science systems (11th), condensed matter physics (13th), programming language (13th), biological sciences (16th), computer science theory (14th), earth sciences (15th), computer science (16th), physics (16th), mathematics (19th), and chemistry (20th).
Social Sciences and Humanities Behavioral neuroscience (4th), econometrics (4th), international politics (4th), cognitive psychology (8th), public finance (8th), political science (9th), comparative politics (10th), development economics (10th), comparative politics (11th), American politics (11th), microeconomics (12th), Latin American history (12th), political methodology (12th), economics (12th), psychology (13th) and English (24th).

Graduate Program Rankings

UC San Diego Department of Theatre doing a play
4th In 2018, The Hollywood Reporter ranked UC San Diego’s Department of Theatre and Dance among the top five in the nation for the best bachelor's degrees to help launch an acting career. The Hollywood Reporter also named UC San Diego 4th in the nation among drama schools with an MFA program.
6th In their 2017 rankings, College Choice named UC San Diego’s Master’s in Fine Arts Program 6th in the nation based on academic reputation, student satisfaction, affordability and average annual salary of early career artists.
13th Foreign Policy Magazine’s 2015 rankings named UC San Diego’s undergraduate international relations program and master’s program for policy careers in international relations 13th best in the world.
25th The Rady School of Management at UC San Diego was ranked 25th in The Princeton Review’s “Top 25 Graduate Schools for Entrepreneurship of 2018.” The ranking recognizes the best programs for students aspiring to launch their own businesses.