Biology Major

The Biology program is a generalized program covering basic areas of biology. Specific pre-professional training is minimized in favor of the broadest possible background in the liberal arts as well as the biological sciences.

The B.A. curriculum offers flexibility so that those students in secondary education who are preparing to teach can include the professional semester of student teaching in the eighth semester. Students majoring in biology may opt to earn a Pennsylvania Teacher Certificate for teaching biology in grades 7-12 by completing a minor in secondary education.

Students interested in Secondary Education declare the minor in secondary education with their advisor. The minor consists of the following courses: ED 180, ED 190, ED 191, ED 220, ED 371 (Teaching Methods in Science), ED 380, ED 390, EDSP 210, EDSP 225, and EDSP 388. All Teacher Education students must apply for admission to the Teacher Education Program in the sophomore or junior year. Candidates must maintain a 2.0 GPA in their secondary major courses and an overall 3.0 grade point average and pass the appropriate PRAXIS tests in order to be certified.

The B.S. curriculum meets all of the liberal arts requirements for the Bachelor of Arts degree. In addition, it provides a greater concentration of advanced biology courses. This program is recommended for those students planning to enter industry, professional schools, or continue with graduate study in biology.

In order to emphasize the breadth of biological knowledge, the department has established categories of biological fields from which the student must achieve reasonable diversity in the selection of upper-level courses. The four categories are 1) Molecular and Cellular Biology, 2) Structural and Functional Biology 3) Diversity and Populational Biology, and 4) Botanical Biology. The B.A. major is required to take a total of four electives, with one upper-level course from each of the four categories. The B.S. major must take a total of at least 18 credits of upper-level electives, with at least one from each of the four categories. In addition, both B.S. and B.A. majors are required to complete at least one course that emphasizes quantitative biology; such courses (e.g., Biostatistics, Bioinformatics, Systems Biology, Biophysics) are indicated prior to registration each semester. The B.S. major must take a minimum of 18 upper-level biology credits.

Course Selections within the Four Biological Fields

A. Molecular and Cellular Biology

BIO 324 - Molecular Biology

BIO 326 - Immunology and Immunochemistry

BIO 327 - Medical Microbiology

BIO 328 - Developmental Biology

BIO 329 - Virology

BIO 338 - Biology of Cancer

BIO 345 - Genetics

BIO 398 - Topics

B. Structural and Functional Biology

BIO 311 - Comparative Physiology

BIO 314 - Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy

BIO 321 - Mammalian Physiology

BIO 323 - Functional Histology

BIO 325 - Endocrinology

BIO 352 - Pathophysiology

BIO 398 - Topics

C. Diversity and Populational Biology

BIO 306 - Invertebrate Biology

BIO 312 - Parasitology

BIO 340 - Conservation Biology

BIO 341 - Freshwater Ecosystems

BIO 342 - The Archosaurs

BIO 343 - Marine Ecology

BIO 344 - Ecology

BIO 346 - Animal Behavior

BIO 348 - Field Zoology

BIO 398 - Topics

D. Botanical Biology

BIO 361 - Plant Form and Function

BIO 362 - Plant Diversity

BIO 366 - Field Botany

BIO 368 - Medical Botany

BIO 369 - Plant Physiology

BIO 398 - Topics