The Academic Program consists of three key components:
Students receive academic credit for each component of the program for a total required minimum of 12 units. Campuses vary in their requirements for academic credit for internships, seminars, and electives.
For campus specific information, refer to the contact chart to connect with campus coordinators.
*All students are required to have an internship to participate in the program.
Internships are the cornerstone of UCDC. Students have a wide range of internship opportunities in DC, ranging from political offices on Capitol Hill and in the federal executive branch, to non-profit institutions, museums, scientific laboratories, advocacy groups, cultural institutions, and news organizations. Students usually work three to four days each week, and leave one whole day available for their seminar course and other academic work.
For more information, visit the Internships page.
*All students are required to take a seminar.
A fundamental part of the UCDC academic curriculum is the research seminar designed to supplement the internship experience through the substantive and research requirements. These courses are taught by UCDC instructors, local Washington experts, and occasionally visiting UC professors. Seminars meet once a week for three hours, usually during the day; on occasion there is an evening seminar offered. Students take off from their internship on the day that their seminar meets to attend class and address other course requirements. Students are free to choose the seminar that best suits their interests or internship. Most seminars combine research papers with a substantive focus on Congress, the Supreme Court, the media, the presidency, elections, and international relations. Another seminar focuses completely on research and allows students to write an in-depth research paper on a topic related to the work of their internship organization. Depending on the seminar, students may share internship experiences, hold discussions on Washington policy, learn research techniques, take field trips to Washington landmarks, or participate in skill-building workshops.
*Semester students are required to take an elective course; quarter students are not required to take electives.
The Academic Program offers several elective courses each term, taught by UCDC faculty, local experts, and occasionally visiting UC professors. Electives usually meet in the evening once a week for three hours. Course offerings vary from term to term. Recent offerings include U.S. Foreign Policy, Law and Politics, Human Rights, and Museums and Memorials.
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Accommodations
If you need ADA accommodations in academics, make sure to have the necessary paperwork sent from your home campus prior to arriving in Washington D.C.
Direct all paperwork and questions to: Professor Diascro, Associate Academic Director
For more information about specific campus requirements, please contact your campus coordinator or visit your campus' program website.