BS Biological Sciences

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Program Learning Objectives

  1. Explain fundamental concepts of biology in the following areas: diversity & evolution; structure and function at multiple hierarchical levels; information flow; energy and matter transformations; interactions among and between organisms and the environment.
  2. Demonstrate proficiency in the appropriate lab and field techniques in their area of specialization in biology.
  3. Locate and critically evaluate the scientific literature.
  4. Apply the process of science to design, conduct, analyze and interpret experiments in biology.
  5. Integrate statistics, math, physical sciences and technology to answer biological questions.
  6. Communicate biological principles and research findings effectively to diverse audiences.
  7. Relate ethical, social justice or global perspectives to the study and practice of biology.

Degree Requirements and Curriculum

In addition to the program requirements listed on this page, students must also satisfy requirements outlined in more detail in the Minimum Requirements for Graduation section of this catalog, including:
  • 60 units of upper-division courses
  • Graduation Writing Requirement (GWR)
  • 2.0 GPA
  • U.S. Cultural Pluralism (USCP)
Note: No Major, Support or Concentration courses may be selected as credit/no credit.
BIO 150Diversity and History of Life4
BIO 161Introduction to Cell and Molecular Biology (B2 & B3) 14
BIO 162Introduction to Organismal Form and Function4
BIO 263Introductory Ecology and Evolution4
BIO 351Principles of Genetics5
BIO 413Evolutionary Medicine4
or BIO 414 Evolution
BIO 461Senior Project - Research Proposal2
or BIO 462 Senior Project Research Experience
Ecology 3
Select from the following:4
Wildlife Ecology
Principles of Conservation Biology
Behavioral Ecology
Plant Ecology
Microbial Ecology
Marine Ecology
Physiology 2,3
Select from the following:4
Principles of Animal Physiology
Environmental Physiology
Plant Physiology
Concentration or General Curriculum in Biology 3
(See list of Concentrations and General Curriculum in Biology below)43
CHEM 127General Chemistry for Agriculture and Life Science I (B1 & B3) 14
CHEM 128General Chemistry for Agriculture and Life Science II4
CHEM 129General Chemistry for Agriculture and Life Science III4
CHEM 216Organic Chemistry I 45
or CHEM 312 Organic Chemistry: Fundamentals and Applications
MATH 161Calculus for the Life Sciences I (B4) 14
MATH 162Calculus for the Life Sciences II (GE Electives) 14
PHYS 121College Physics I4
PHYS 122College Physics II4
PHYS 123College Physics III4
STAT 218Applied Statistics for the Life Sciences4
(See GE program requirements below.)56
Free Electives 55
Total units180

General Curriculum in Biology or Concentrations (Select one)

General Education (GE) Requirements

  • 72 units required, 16 of which are specified in Major and/or Support.
  • If any of the remaining 56 units is used to satisfy a Major or Support requirement, additional units of Free Electives may be needed to complete the total units required for the degree.
  • See the complete GE course listing.
  • A grade of C- or better is required in one course in each of the following GE Areas: A1 (Oral Communication), A2 (Written Communication), A3 (Critical Thinking), and B4 (Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning). 
Area AEnglish Language Communication and Critical Thinking
A1Oral Communication4
A2Written Communication4
A3Critical Thinking4
Area BScientific Inquiry and Quantitative Reasoning
B1Physical Science (4 units in Support) 10
B2Life Science (4 units in Major) 10
B3One lab taken with either a B1 or B2 course
B4Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning (4 units in Support) 10
Upper-Division B4
Area CArts and Humanities
Lower-division courses in Area C must come from three different subject prefixes.
C1Arts: Arts, Cinema, Dance, Music, Theater4
C2Humanities: Literature, Philosophy, Languages other than English4
Lower-Division C Elective - Select a course from either C1 or C24
Upper-Division C4
Area DSocial Sciences - Select courses in Area D from at least two different prefixes
D1American Institutions (Title 5, Section 40404 Requirement)4
D2Lower-Division D4
Upper-Division D4
Area ELifelong Learning and Self-Development
Lower-Division E4
Area F Ethnic Studies
F Ethnic Studies4
GE Electives in Areas B, C, and D
Select courses from two different areas; may be lower-division or upper-division courses.
GE Electives (4 units in Support plus 4 units in GE) 14
Total units56