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The Biology major is designed for students wishing to explore life science at multiple levels ranging from the molecular to the organismal to the ecosystem level. The curriculum seeks to develop organizational and communication skills, critical thinking and the ability to synthesize information. Graduates of the program are well prepared to undertake advanced study in graduate, medical or dental school, or for a career in business or education.

Major requirements include:

  • BI103: General Biology for Majors
  • BI104: General Biology for Majors II
  • BI345: Biostatistics

  • PS121: General Physics I
  • PS122: General Physics II
  • PS131: Classical Physics I
  • PS132: Classical Physics II
  • CH130 General Chemistry I
  • CH131: General Chemistry II
  • CH250: Organic Chemistry I
  • CH251: Organic Chemistry II

The courses above are required, plus seven other courses chosen from those listed below. At least one course must be selected from each of the following four categories (four courses total).

One of the remaining three biology electives may be replaced with: Directed Research in Biology (BI421-BI422 or BI423); Internship (BI451, 452); Washington Internship (BI450).

Six of the seven must be lab courses.

Category 1 - Cellular & Molecular Biology
  • BI318: Microbiology
  • BI327: Genetics
  • BI330: Principles of Biotechnology (nonlab)
  • BI333: Cell Biology
  • BI336: Biochemistry
  • BI341: Selected Topics in Biochemistry
  • BI344: Nutrition (nonlab)
  • BI346: Pharmacology (nonlab)
Category 3 - Organismal Structure & Function
  • BI201: Exercise Physiology (nonlab)
  • BI315: Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy
  • BI324: Developmental Biology (nonlab)
  • BI331: Human Anatomy and Physiology I
  • BI332: Human Anatomy and Physiology II
  • BI336: Animal Physiology
  • BI339: Endocrinology (nonlab)
Category 2 - Evolution & Diversity
  • BI210: Field Botany (nonlab)
  • BI325: Evolutionary Biology (nonlab)
  • BI335: Animal Behavior
  • BI329: Plant Biology
  • BI338: Invertebrate Zoology
  • BI347: Ornithology
Category 4 - Global Issues & Environmental Science
  • BI205: Biosphere at Risk (nonlab)
  • BI319: Aquatic Ecology
  • BI320: Ecology
  • BI328: Conservation Biology
  • BI340: Field Studies in Tropical Biology

To assist students in selecting a balance of courses from several academic areas, each Biology major is assigned a faculty advisor with whom a close advisee-advisor relationship must be developed. Scientific research is an important aspect of an education in science and each major is strongly recommended to replace one of the seven required courses with one of the following:

  1. Under the direction of a faculty member, participate in Directed Research in Biology (BI421-422 or BI423);
  2. Develop, with direction from the Internship Facilitator, an individual internship program (BI451, 452); or
  3. Participate in the Washington Internship Program (BI450).

Course Sequence - Classes of 2015 - 2017

Please refer to the College Catalogue and consult with your academic advisor for recommended course sequencing. Revised graduation requirements for each graduating class can be found in the Guide to the Core Curriculum.

Course Sequence - Class of 2018 and Beyond

Freshman Year
Conversatio I Conversatio II
English composition / Core English composition / Core
Biology 103 Biology 104
Chemistry 130 Chemistry 131
Sophomore Year
Language I / Elective Language II / Elective
Core Core
Biology elective I / Biostats Biology Elective I / Biostats
Chemistry 250 Chemistry 251
Junior Year
Language III / Elective Core
Core Core
Physics 121 Physics 122
Biology Elective II Biology Elective III
Senior Year
Core Core / Elective
Core / Elective Elective
Biologly Elective IV Biology Elective VI
Biology Elective V / Biology 421 Biology Elective VII / Biology 422