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About the Department of Biological Sciences

About the Department of Biological Sciences
Student and faculty discussing samples in a lab.

The Department of Biological Sciences provides courses for biology majors, minors, and non-majors from all areas. The department currently has more than 600 majors in its undergraduate program leading to a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts, and offers a graduate program leading to a Master of Arts or Master of Science.

All majors take a year of introductory biology, a genetics course and a biostatistics course. The department offers seven concentrations that allow students to focus on the areas and specialties that most interest them. Each concentration includes a set of core courses, followed by a choice of upper-level electives such as Advanced Comparative Physiology, Animal Behavior, Cancer Biology, Comparative Anatomy, Concepts in Evolution, Embryology, Immunology, Microbiology, Molecular Biology, Neurobiology, Pharmacology, Plant Biology, Reproductive Physiology, Research Methods & Applied Biostatistics, ​and Toxicology.

Allied field courses for all concentrations include a year of general chemistry, a year of organic chemistry, a year of physics, and a year of calculus. Each concentration provides the prerequisites for application to post-baccalaureate professional schools, such as medical schools or PhD programs.

Note for Prospective Students: Incoming freshmen are strongly encouraged to complete the General Chemistry I (CHE 130) and General Biology I (Bio 191) classes in their first quarter.  These two classes meet MWF 9:30 am to 1 PM; you should avoid overlapping those time periods​ when selecting a section of the Chicago Quarter class (LSP 110/111).