Area of Focus
  • Behavioral & Social Sciences
Degrees Offered
  • B.A.
  • Ph.D.
  • Undergraduate Minor
Academic Division
  • Social Sciences
  • Education

Program overview

The Education, Democracy and Justice major (EDJ; pronounced ‘Edge’) provides opportunities to examine critical questions, theories, practices, and research in the field of education considered broadly and not only in relation to formal schooling. Courses in the major provide the conceptual knowledge for students to engage in critical thinking about social and policy contexts as well as everyday practices affecting inequitable structures in schooling, society, and culture that have enduring impacts on the quality of our democracy and communities.

Students studying

Learning Experience

The major’s course of study explores the history and politics of education and public schooling and their relation to the formation of just and democratic societies; theories of cognition, learning, and pedagogy; and issues of equity and cultural and linguistic diversity in education and in public school policies and practices. The major does not focus on education in international contexts but will address the effects of immigration and globalization on U.S. education.

Study and Research Opportunities

The Education, Democracy, and Justice (EDJ) major’s sociocultural perspective emphasizes equity and social justice related education in and out of school, with a particular focus on how cognition, language, and knowledge production, circulation, and mobilization are related to social, cultural, and other identities and their processes of formation. Students will examine critical, transformative pedagogies that focus on meeting the needs of low-income, ethnically, racially, and linguistically non-dominant students and their families, and how these pedagogies support the development of more healthy and flourishing children and youth and a more just and democratic society.

First-Year (Freshman) Requirements

High school students who plan to pursue a career in education should take the courses required for UC admission and complete any courses recommended as background for their intended major.

For Education minors and EDJ majors, Education 60 will be the first Education course to take in the subject area. EDJ majors will also need to take Education 10.

Those with a STEM major should meet with Cal Teach staff as early as possible. Cal Teach program internships are required for the STEM Education minor.

For more information about the declaration process please review the Education Website.

Sammy the slug holding a voting sign

Transfer Requirements

Transfer students can designate the Education, Democracy, and Justice (EDJ) major as their intended major and begin working on the requirements as soon as they arrive at UCSC. However, they will not be able to formally declare until they either complete two of the three courses: EDUC 10, and EDUC 60; and EDUC 110 or EDUC 180 at UCSC, or courses taken at their previous institution that the Education Department has approved as equivalent.

Students should bring a copy of their UCSC Transfer Credit Summary (printed from the student portal) to the meeting with the undergraduate adviser.



Internships and Career Opportunities

  • Bilingual-multicultural education
  • Business education
  • Curriculum development
  • Education administration
  • Educational consulting
  • Educational research
  • Industrial training
  • Professional education associations
  • Public relations
  • School counseling
  • School psychology
  • Social work
  • Special education
  • Teaching: elementary, secondary

These are only samples of the field’s many possibilities.



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(831) 459-2997