Crown College

Academic Life at Crown College


Academically Diverse​

Crown College faculty and students represent a wide variety of academic disciplines. Although Crown has more science and engineering students than any of the other colleges, the majority of Crown’s students major in the social sciences, humanities and arts. This diversity of interests and thinking enriches our intellectual environment.

An important goal of the college is to foster an appreciation for the contributions of diverse cultural groups and to provide an atmosphere in which issues of both diversity and common social purpose are integrated into a wide range of programs and discussions. We extend a warm welcome to all students and encourage them to take advantage of the many opportunities here at Crown as we strive to create an atmosphere of academic excellence.

Academic Emphases

From the time of its founding in 1967, issues pertaining to the role of science and technology in society have been a focus of special interest at Crown College. We approach these issues from an interdisciplinary perspective that recognizes the influence of social and cultural factors on the scientific enterprise, as well as the ways in which science and technology influence our society.

What Makes Us Unique​

Core Course

CRWN 1, Academic Literacy and Ethos: Ethical and Societal Implications of Emerging Technologies

Offered fall quarter

Crown College’s entering frosh enroll in our core course, CRWN 1, which explores Crown’s theme, Ethical and Societal Implications of Emerging Technologies. Students work individually, in small groups of four to five students, and in sections of 25 to 30 students, thereby modeling and embracing the diversity found across campus. CRWN 1 looks at technological revolutions and at their implications both locally and globally. CRWN 1 also explores issues of inequality and the ethical dilemmas involved and what we can do as responsible citizens to address the challenges facing our society. Deeper goals of this course include fostering a sense of belonging, and ensuring that our students develop the analytical reading, critical thinking, and effective communication skills that they need to succeed in their studies.

A central component of the course is a group research project, in which students study the impact of a technology of their choice, while learning strategies for effective group work. Crown’s core course is enhanced through our plenary series, which gives students opportunities to hear intellectual leaders speak and to interact with them, while getting to know our team of Core faculty. We also organize a science-fiction short story contest. In winter of their frosh year, our students have additional opportunities to build on their Core experience by performing a play connected to the theme of Core Digital Theater Workshop (CRWN 96), by turning their research project into a podcast (Podcasting: Digital Storytelling (CRWN 98)), or by attending and/or presenting at Crown’s Social Fiction Conference SFC.

CRWN 79,  Introduction to Social and Ethical Implications of Emerging Technologies

This is a 2-credit version of Core geared toward transfer students, focusing on fostering a sense of belonging through group work, as well as reinforcing analytical reading, critical thinking, and effective communication skills.

Other Academic Programs

Complementing its focus on science and technology, Crown provides experiential learning opportunities and supports the development of transferable skills. This includes providing funding for materials needed for class projects (Crown Student Project Funds) and an extensive curriculum of elective classes. These classes are open to all majors and can be grouped in three areas: entrepreneurship, digital literacy and communication skills. 

Crown offers three entrepreneurship classes: Start-up Entrepreneurship Academy  (CRWN 90), Social and Creative Entrepreneurship (CRWN 92), and Fundamentals of Starting and Scaling an Organization  (CRWN 100). Crown also offers two exciting opportunities for experiential learning in the area of entrepreneurship: GetVirtual Business Assistance (CRWN 95), and Marketing for Good (CRWN 91) and facilitates access to incubator space and to funding opportunities for student ventures through its partnership with the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurial Development. Opportunities to explore the ethical implications of emerging technologies and to develop tools for ethical assessment are available through Crown’s Center for Applied Ethics and Values of Emerging Technologies

Crown supports digital literacy through two classes: Computational Futurology: Use of Data Analysis for Predicting Human Behavior and Activity (CRWN 88), and Workshop in Computational Biology  (CRWN 89). CRWN 88 covers statistical and computational approaches available to predict human activity, both at the individual and at the collective level, and culminates in a group project that integrates the concepts learned in the course. CRWN 89 engages students in genomics research by forming teams of complementary expertise in coding, advanced statistics and biology and guiding them through the process of academic inquiry. 

Crown also offers a variety of classes supporting multimodal communication and artistic expression. This includes two classes offered by the KZSC FM radio station: Introduction to Broadcast Media: Radio (CRWN 70) and Broadcast Production: Radio (CRWN 70L) and also a Sci-Fi drama class tied to Core, Digital Theater Workshop (CRWN 96), a videography class, Storytelling in a Digital Age (CRWN 86), a podcasting class, Podcasting: Digital Storytelling (CRWN 98), and a Sci-Fi class, Science Fictions (CRWN 80F).

Student Well-Being

Crown offers a workshop series to promote student resiliency. Students explore their identity while managing and letting go of stress, anxiety, and depression. This program focuses on understanding: 1) how we process our thoughts and feelings; 2) how society (family and friends) and culture impacts us; 3) ways to experience and create meaning and value in life.

Summer Classes

Crown College will offer a great curriculum in Summer 2023! These classes are open to all UCSC students from any and all colleges and majors, as well as students from other universities or high schools.  

Summer Classes

CRWN 80F Science Fictions
CRWN 90 Start Up Entrepreneurship Academy (SEA)
CRWN 95 GetVirtual Business Assistance
CRWN 98 Podcasting: Digital Storytelling
CRWN 140 Designing Your Life 

Enrollment opens May 1, all students are welcome. 

Global Seminars

Costa Rica: CRWN 92 Social and Creative Entrepreneurship and CRWN 94  Ecoentrepreneurship 

Ireland: CRWN 98B Podcasting: Digital Storytelling, in conjunction with Writing 2: Research and Travel Writing

By application only—see website for details, info sessions, and deadlines.

Through Summer Session Summer UCSC, Crown offers a large part of its curriculum in the summer. 

These classes are open not only to all UCSC students but also to students from other higher education institutions and are delivered in 5-week, 8-week or 10-week periods. 

See Also