Biology

Major/Minor

The Biology program offers a broadly based approach to biological systems, ranging from molecular and cellular to ecological and evolutionary biology. It incorporates emerging areas of biology and integrates these with traditional organismal studies. Opportunities for hypothesis-driven experimentation that demands initiative, creativity, and independent research projects are built into the curriculum.

Program Locations

Available Majors

  • Biology

Available Minors

  • Biology

Additional Study Options

Faculty

Courses

  • Chesapeake Bay: BIO-104 (3 credits)

    Explores the Chesapeake Bay, the largest estuary in the United States, providing a unique habitat for the region's wildlife. The course will examine the physical, geological and chemical factors that affect the rich variety of plants and animals in the bay. Students will study the bay's ecosystem and the external and natural factors that affect the health of the bay. Field work on location is required. Laboratory work is integrated with lectures. First year students only. Fulfills general education requirement in natural sciences. College of Adult Undergraduate Studies students only. [3 credits]
  • Human Biology: BIO-107 (3 credits)

    Focuses on how the major body systems are organized and function. Examines various major health concerns, such as cardiovascular health, cancer, diabetes and obesity, and explains their relationship with proper body function. Emphasizes how well-informed decisions about lifestyle can keep body systems operating at their best. Laboratory exercises include application of key principles of structure and function for major body systems. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Fulfills general education requirement in natural science. Designed for non-science majors. [3-4 credits] 3 credit version for College of Adult Undergraduate Studies students only.
  • Lab: Human Biology: BIO-107L (0 credits)

  • Exploring Concepts in Biology: BIO-110 (4 credits)

    Prepares students for a major in biology who would benefit first from a focus on the integration of chemistry and mathematics into their study of biology prior to attempting BIO-111. Students will develop concepts, design experiments and analyze data to solve problems that are situated in various branches of biology. Lecture and lab are combined in two-hour class meetings. Fulfills general education requirement in natural science. [4 credits]
  • Fundamentals of Biology: BIO-111 (4 credits)

    Focuses on the structure and function of the fundamental unit of life, the cell. Examines basic biological molecules, membrane structure and function, basic metabolism, photosynthesis, cellular reproduction, evolution, genetics and introductory systematics. In weekly laboratory exercises, students design and conduct experiments to answer scenario-based questions. Includes independent small-group laboratory research project that culminates in a student research symposium. Three hours lecture and four hours laboratory. Designed for students with a strong high school background in biology, chemistry and mathematics. Prerequisite: MSAT greater than department-designated value or BIO-110 with minimum grade of C+, or permission of chair. Fulfills general education requirement in natural sciences. [4 credits]
  • Lab: Fundamentals of Biology: BIO-111L (0 credits)

  • Environmental Science for Educators: BIO-114 (3 credits)

    Studies the interactions among the physical, chemical, biological, political and social forces which impact the environment. Provides students with scientific principles, concepts and methodologies necessary to comprehend the relationships within the natural world, to identify and analyze environmental problems, to evaluate relative risks associated with these identified problems, and to examine alternative solutions for resolving and/or preventing similar problems facing the global environment. Topics include the major biomes in the world, populations, biodiversity, water, air and land uses and issues, energy resources and waste management. [3 credits] College of Adult Undergraduate Studies students only.
  • Environmental Science: BIO-115 (3 credits)

    Evaluates the relationships between human populations and the natural environment. Introduces the fundamental science needed to critically analyze claims, arguments and evidence related to environmental concerns. Analyzes environmental problems and issues in terms of the underlying basic physical, chemical, and biological sciences and integrates concepts and information from many fields to support an understanding of the ecology of our planet, how we interact with it, and how our species affects the earth and its life-support systems. Laboratory sessions introduce field techniques for investigating environmental questions. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Fulfills general education requirement in natural science. Designed for non-science majors. [3-4 credits] 3 credit version for College of Adult Undergraduate Studies students only.
  • Lab: Environmental Science: BIO-115L (3 credits)

  • Conservation Biology: BIO-116 (3 credits)

    Analyzes the causes and repercussions of the rapid, devastating, and global extinctions of plants and animals, chiefly as a result of human activities. This course examines the range of cultural, biological and environmental factors that contribute to the loss of biodiversity and the new, integrated science of conservation biology that has developed in response to the challenge of saving species and remediating the environment. Classroom discussions will treat the essential concepts and practical knowledge necessary to ensure the perpetuation of our planet's flora and fauna. Fulfills general education requirement in natural science. Designed for non-science majors. [3-4 credits] 3 credit version for College of Adult Undergraduate Studies students only.
  • Biology of Human Nutrition: BIO-126 (4 credits)

    Focuses on the biological principles that underlie the rationale for eating correctly, the tools needed to assess the quality of the diet and the knowledge to be a well-informed consumer. Examines nutrition-based health concerns, such as cardiovascular health, cancer, diabetes and obesity. Integrates dietanalysis software and cooking in laboratory exercises. Includes a service learning project in which students apply their nutrition knowledge. Lecture and laboratory are integrated into three two-hour sessions each week. Fulfills general education requirement in natural sciences. Designed for non-science majors. [ 3 credits for Weekend College; must be 4 credits for Women's College ]
  • Principles of Evolution: BIO-150 (3 credits)

    Describes fundamental concepts of the modern theory of evolution and provides an overview of genetic variation, adaptation, and biodiversity. Mechanisms of evolutionary change by natural selection and other agencies, theories on the origin of life, and the history of life as revealed by the fossil record and other evidence are described. Fulfills general education requirement in natural science. Designed for non-science majors. [ 3 credits ] College of Adult Undergraduate Studies students only.
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology I: BIO-201 (4 credits)

    Integrates the study of structure with function of the human body. As a suite of courses, BIO-201 and 202 are intended for students interested in satisfying requirements for pharmacy and various allied health programs. The content and level of delivery of both BIO-201 and 202 are structured so that they are compatible with similar courses offered by cooperating institutions. BIO-201 includes discussion of cellular, tissue, integumentary, skeletal, muscular and neural systems. Includes laboratory study of anatomical models of humans and skeletal components, and dissection of a cat. BIO-202 includes discussion of endocrine, circulatory, immunological, digestive, urinary and reproductive systems. Strongly emphasizes study of physiological functions that includes monitoring of body systems with analog and digital hardware. Each course includes three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. A competency exam covering basic chemistry and biology may be administered at the first class meeting and weighed in the final grade. To begin the course sequence, the student must complete BIO-111 or the equivalent with a minimum grade of C or obtain permission of the instructor. BIO-201 with minimum grade of C is a prerequisite for BIO-202. [ 4 credits each term ]
  • Lab: Human Anatomy/Physiol I: BIO-201L (0 credits)

  • Human Anatomies and Physiology II: BIO-202 (4 credits)

    Integrates the study of structure with function of the human body. As a suite of courses, BIO-201 and 202 are intended for students interested in satisfying requirements for pharmacy and various allied health programs. The content and level of delivery of both BIO-201 and 202 are structured so that they are compatible with similar courses offered by cooperating institutions. BIO-201 includes discussion of cellular, tissue, integumentary, skeletal, muscular and neural systems. Includes laboratory study of anatomical models of humans and skeletal components, and dissection of a cat. BIO-202 includes discussion of endocrine, circulatory, immunological, digestive, urinary and reproductive systems. Strongly emphasizes study of physiological functions that includes monitoring of body systems with analog and digital hardware. Each course includes three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. A competency exam covering basic chemistry and biology may be administered at the first class meeting and weighed in the final grade. To begin the course sequence, the student must complete BIO-111 or the equivalent with a minimum grade of C or obtain permission of the instructor. BIO-201 with minimum grade of C is a prerequisite for BIO-202. [ 4 credits each term ]
  • Lab: Human Anatomy/Physiol II: BIO-202L (0 credits)

  • Nutrition: BIO-205 (3 credits)

    Focuses on basic scientific and psychosocial principles of nutrition and their application during the human life span in health and disease. Pre-nursing students only. Three hours lecture. Prerequisite: CHM-108. [ 3 credits ]
  • Unity and Diversity of Life: BIO-230 (4 credits)

    Focuses on the unity of biological processes common to plants, animals and fungi, such as transport, gas exchange, and reproduction; also focuses on the diversity of organisms in their adaptation to environmental challenges. Unity and diversity are studied in both ecological and evolutionary contexts. An independent small-group research project is completed in the laboratory and culminates in a student research symposium. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO-111 with minimum grade of C or permission of the instructor. [ 4 credits ]
  • Lab: Unity and Diversity of Life: BIO-230L (0 credits)

  • Genetics: BIO-239 (4 credits)

    Considers the mechanisms by which biological information is stored, accessed, and passed on from one generation to the next from both Mendelian and molecular genetic perspectives. Introduces basic techniques of molecular biology such as bacterial transformations, gel electrophoresis, DNA sequencing and sequencing analysis. Includes the use of online databases such as Pub Med and sequence analysis tools such as BLAST. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO-111 and CHM-110, each with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor. [ 4 credits ] Honors section meets concurrently with and considers the same subject matter as BIO-239 (non-Honors). Honors students meet for an extra hour per week to concentrate on the historical and social aspects of genetics. Four hours lecture and three hours laboratory.
  • Lab: Genetics: BIO-239L (0 credits)

  • General Microbiology: BIO-253 (4 credits)

    Presents basic concepts of bacteriology, virology, mycology and parasitology with a special focus on bacteria and viruses. The structure, morphology and genetics of microbes will be investigated, as well as their requirements for and patterns of growth. Other topics will include the human microbiota, mechanisms of pathogenicity, basic host defense mechanisms, antimicrobial chemotherapy and the development of microbial drug resistance. Finally, the epidemiology of infectious diseases, along with the characteristics and methods utilized in the control of classic and emerging pathogens will be addressed. In the laboratory students will learn basic aseptic transfer, staining, and culture techniques required for the isolation, identification and enumeration of microbes and will investigate various factors affecting microbial growth, including antiseptics, disinfectants, and antimicrobial drugs. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Pre-nursing students only. Prerequisites: BIO -111 with a minimum grade of C. [4 credits]

  • Lab: General Microbiology: BIO-253L (0 credits)

  • Genetics & Genomics for Clinical Practice: BIO-260 (3 credits)

    Considers the basics of molecular and Mendelian genetics and how they apply to human medical conditions. Uses specific examples to demonstrate general principles of human diseases and conditions with genetic causes to demonstrate general principles of Mendelian and molecular genetics. Discusses medical applications of emerging genetic tehnologies. Introduces emerging concepts in the genetic and epigenetic causes of human disease. Pre-nursing students only. Prerequisites: BIO-111 with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor. [ 3 credits ]

  • Introductory Biological Research: BIO-273 (1 credits)

    Investigates a topic of current interest in the biological sciences under faculty guidance. Includes a literature search, design and execution of original laboratory research, and data analysis. Culminates in submission of a poster to local and/or regional student research symposia. Designed for first-and second-year students. Permission of instructor required. [ 1-3 credits ]
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology For Nurses I: BIO-281 (4 credits)

    Examines the basic structure and function of the human body. Major topics in BIO 281 include the chemistry of living organisms, cells and tissues, chemical and electrical signaling, skin and protective barriers, bones and joints, muscles, the nervous and endocrine systems, and special senses. This course provides a solid foundation in normal human anatomy and physiology to help the student integrate knowledge gained in lecture with clinical application in laboratory. Laboratory work includes dissection, microscopy, studying models, and experimental demonstration of concepts covered in lecture. Dissection of non-preserved animal specimens is required. This course is designed primarily for students who intend to major in nursing. Prerequisites: BIO-111 with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor. [ 4 credits ]

  • Lab: Human Anatomy and Physiology For Nurses I: BIO-281L (0 credits)

  • Human Anatomy and Physiology for Nurses II: BIO-282 (4 credits)

    Examines the basic structure and function of the human body. Major topics covered in BIO 282 include blood, the cardiovascular system, innate and adaptive immunity, the lymphatic system, the respiratory system, the digestive system, metabolism, the urinary system, the reproductive system, basic genetics, and human development. This course provides a solid foundation in normal human anatomy and physiology to help the student integrate knowledge gained in lecture with clinical application in laboratory. Laboratory work includes dissection, microscopy, studying models, and experimental demonstration of concepts covered in lecture. Dissection of non-preserved animal specimens is required. This course is designed primarily for students who intend to major in nursing. Prerequisites: BIO-281. Students must receive a minimum of C in BIO-281 in order to enroll in BIO-282. [ 4 credits ]

  • Lab: Human Anatomy and Physiology for Nurses II: BIO-282L (0 credits)

  • Ecology: BIO-307 (4 credits)

    Examines the relationships between living organisms and their environment. Emphasizes the physical and biological factors that influence evolution; the distribution, abundance and diversity of species; and the structure of communities and ecosystem function. Applies ecological knowledge to current topics in global issues. Laboratory focuses on field experiences and the practical use of field techniques. An independently designed and executed field project is completed in the laboratory and culminates in a student research symposium. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO-230 Unity and Diversity of Life and CHM-111, each with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor; completion of mathematics requirement strongly recommended. [ 4 credits ]

  • Lab: Ecology: BIO-307L (0 credits)

  • Honors: Geology and Ecology of the American West: BIO-308 (4 credits)

    Focuses on the basic concepts of plate tectonics and applies them to the geological events that shaped the American West. Focuses on the relationships between the plants and animals of the American West and their environment. Develops connections between the geology and ecology of the area. Integrates current ecological problems of the area such as water regulation, mining and logging. Lecture and laboratory are integrated into three two-hour sessions. Prerequisite: Morrissy scholar or permission. Fulfills general education requirement in natural science. Designed for non-science majors. [4 credits]
  • Evolution: BIO-311 (4 credits)

    Examines the basic processes of organic evolution, including the production of genetic variation, mechanisms and levels of selection, adaptive radiation and speciation. Readings in the course focus on macroevolution and the fossil record and on microevolution and molecular evolution. Films and websites featuring evolutionary themes are examined and critiqued. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO-230 Unity and Diversity of Life and CHM-111, each with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor. [ 4 credits ]
  • Lab: Evolution: BIO-311L (0 credits)

  • Survey of Biochemistry: BIO-325 (3 credits)

    Provides an overview of biochemistry. Includes the study of proteins, enzymes, energy production and basic metabolic pathways. Three hours lecture. Prerequisites: BIO-111, CHM-210 with minimum grades of C or permission of instructor; CHM-211. [ 3 credits ]
  • Microbiology: BIO-340 (4 credits)

    Examines the world of microorganisms and their occurrence and roles in nature. Focuses on the study of structure, growth, pathogenicity and genetics of bacteria and viruses. An independently designed and executed, small-group research project is completed in the laboratory and culminates in a student research symposium. Three hours lecture and four hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO-239 and CHM-111, each with a minimum grade of C or permission of the instructor. [ 4 credits ]

  • Lab: Microbiology: BIO-340L (0 credits)

  • Vertebrate Anatomy: BIO-341 (4 credits)

    Surveys the biodiversity of extant and extinct vertebrates and examines anatomical design and function in fishes, amphibians, reptiles, and mammals. An emphasis is placed on evolutionary trends of adaptation by different taxa to various environments. Laboratory exercises involve examination of commercially prepared specimens to develop the skills for dissection. Typically incorporates field trips to sites such as the National Museum of Natural History and American Museum of Natural History. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO-230 Unity and Diversity of Life with a minimum grade of C or permission of the instructor. [ 4 credits ]

  • Lab: Vertebrate Anatomy: BIO-341L (0 credits)

  • Animal Behavior: BIO-343 (4 credits)

    Analyzes the behavior of animals from many perspectives, including the role of genetics and the environment, hormonal influences, and the neurobiology of behavior, as well as the evolutionary causes and consequences of behavior. Emphasizes the organizing mechanisms employed by organisms responding to complex environments and the value of behavioral strategies in finding food, avoiding predators, choosing mates, parenting, communicating and forming groups. Uses video and living examples to illustrate techniques in the study of animal behavior. An independently designed and executed research project is completed in the laboratory and culminates in a student research symposium. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO-230 Unity and Diversity of Life or PSY-101, with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor. [ 4 credits ]
  • Lab: Animal Behavior: BIO-343L (0 credits)

  • Nutrition: BIO-345 (3 credits)

    Focuses on the basic biochemical, physiological and psychosocial principles of the science of nutrition, and their applications to the nutritional requirements during the human life span in health as well as disease. Methods used in evaluating and meeting current nutritional norms will be investigated. Students will learn to read and evaluate the current literature, as found in refereed nutritional journals as well from popular electronic sources. Three hours lecture. Prerequisites: BIO-111 and CHM-210 each with a minimum grade of C, or permission of Instructor. [ 3 credits ]
  • Immunology: BIO-403 (3 credits)

    Covers the basic cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in humoral and cell-mediated immunity. Topics include tissues and cells of the immune response, antigen and antibody structure and function, the major histocompatibility complex, genetics of antibody and T-cell receptor formation, immune effector mechanisms and aberrations of the immune response. Three hours lecture. Prerequisites: BIO-111 and CHM-211, each with a minimum grade of C or permission of the instructor; BIO-239 Genetics and BIO-340 Microbiology strongly recommended. [ 3 credits ]

  • Cell and Molecular Biology: BIO-410 (4 credits)

    Discusses the structure and function of the eukaryotic cell. Special attention is given to the function of cellular organelles, the structure of the genome, and the production and modification of proteins. In the laboratory, students employ basic molecular techniques to study cellular functions. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO-239 Genetics, with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor. [ 4 credits ]
  • Lab: Cell and Molecular Biology: BIO-410L (0 credits)

  • Special Topics in Biology: BIO-411 (1 credits)

    Explores, in depth, a focused topic in biology based on instructor's expertise. Topic will change from year to year and to reflect trends and developments in biology. Prerequisite: Will be noted for specific course, based on topic. [ 3 credits ]
  • Neurobiology: BIO-413 (4 credits)

    Focuses on the mechanisms by which neural systems control animal behavior. Integrates neural function with underlying biochemistry, cell biology and organ physiology. The laboratory places strong emphasis on data acquisition from electrophysiological hardware and data analysis from computer software. Includes small group research in which each group independently designs, implements, analyzes and presents a semester-long research project in the context of a simulated symposium. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisites: PSY-223 or BIO-341 Vertebrate Anatomy, CHM-210 each with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor. [ 4 credits ]
  • Lab: Neurobiology: BIO-413L (0 credits)

  • Developmental Biology: BIO-415 (4 credits)

    Focuses on the comparative mechanisms by which a single cell gives rise to a complex, multicellular organism. Uses the perspective of classical embryology, modern cell biology and molecular genetics. Includes recent advances in developmental biology with emphasis on species comparisons and evolutionary relationships. Includes small student groups that independently design, implement, analyze and present a semester-long research project that culminates in an audiovisual presentation in a simulated symposium-style format. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO-239 Genetics, BIO-341 Vertebrate Anatomy and CHM-210, each with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor. [ 4 credits ]
  • Lab: Developmental Biology: BIO-415L (0 credits)

  • Biochemistry I: BIO-425 (4 credits)

    Focuses on biomolecules, enzyme kinetics, the biochemistry of energy production, and a description of basic metabolic pathways as well as their regulation and integration in functioning organisms. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO-111, CHM-210 each with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor, and CHM-211. [ 4 credits ]
  • Lab: Biochemistry I: BIO-425L (0 credits)

  • Biochemistry II: BIO-426 (4 credits)

    Focuses on biomolecules, enzyme kinetics, the biochemistry of energy production, and a description of basic metabolic pathways as well as their regulation and integration in functioning organisms. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO-425 with minimum grade of C or permission of instructor. [ 4 credits ]
  • Lab: Biochemistry II: BIO-426L (0 credits)

  • Animal Physiology: BIO-431 (4 credits)

    Investigates how specific physiological functions and animal behavior have underlying biochemical, cellular and organ system structural designs. Focuses on comparative physiology in the context of how animal systems can be influenced by environmental conditions and how these have been modified through evolution. Includes small group projects in which students independently design, implement, analyze and present semester-long research projects in the form of a simulated symposium. Three hours lecture and three hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO-341 Vertebrate Anatomy and CHM-211, each with a minimum grade of C or permission of instructor. [4 credits]
  • Lab: Animal Physiology: BIO-431L (0 credits)

  • Senior Seminar: BIO-451 (3 credits)

    Serves as the capstone experience in the major. Focuses on critical synthesis and analysis of biological literature. Includes student-led discussions of research papers on topics of individual student interest. Develops knowledge of a topic, library research skills and interpretation of the original research literature in biology. Culminates in a written review of scientific literature on a topic of individual interest. Prerequisite: senior biology major or permission of instructor. [3 credits]
  • Independent Study: BIO-463 (1 credits)

    Focuses on individual study in biology under the direction of a faculty member. Culminates in written paper or conference presentation. Permission of instructor required. [1 to 4 credits]
  • Biological Research: BIO-473 (1 credits)

    Investigates a topic of current interest in the biological sciences under faculty guidance. Includes a literature search and design and execution of original laboratory research project. Culminates in a written paper or scientific poster. Permission of instructor required. Can be taken multiple times. [1 to 4 credits]
  • General Chemistry I: CHM-110 (4 credits)

    Focuses on fundamental chemical concepts and principles with emphasis on inorganic compounds. Guided inquiry methods are used to explore descriptive and quantitative aspects of chemistry, including atomic and molecular structure, chemical bonding, states of matter, solutions, basic thermodynamics, electrochemistry, equilibrium, acids and bases, and kinetics. Laboratory is coordinated with lecture and emphasizes basic techniques such as titration, spectroscopy, and quantitative and qualitative analysis, along with inorganic synthesis and calculator-based experiments. Three lectures, one discussion period and one laboratory each week. High school algebra strongly recommended. Satisfies the general education requirement in natural science. [4 credits]
  • Organic Chemistry I: CHM-210 (4 credits)

    Focuses on functional group classification, nomenclature, synthesis, reactions, and spectroscopic analysis with a strong emphasis on reaction mechanisms of organic compounds. Laboratory is coordinated with lecture material and stresses basic techniques such as distillation, recrystallization, extraction, and chromatography, along with organic synthesis using both macroscale and microscale applications. Laboratory also includes an introduction to organic structure determination using a variety of spectral methods, including nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, infrared spectroscopy and mass spectrometry. Three lectures, one discussion and one laboratory period per week. Prerequisites: CHM-110, 111. [4 credits]
  • Elementary Functions: MAT-107 (3 credits)

    Provides preparation for study of calculus, and is also designed for pre-service elementary educators with a strong interest in mathematics. Covers polynomial, exponential, logarithmic and trigonometric functions and their applications. Graphing calculator is used throughout the course. Prerequisite: Strong algebraic background (as evidenced by placement test) or completion of MAT 100 or MAT 103. Fulfills the general education requirement in mathematics. [3 credits]

  • Calculus I: MAT-211 (4 credits)

    Introduces functions, limits, continuity, differential calculus of polynomial, rational, exponential and logarithmic functions, as well as basic integration techniques. Applications are considered throughout the course with an emphasis on the life sciences. Weekly laboratory is an integral part of the course. Graphing calculators used to explore topics covered. Fulfills the general education requirement in mathematics Prerequisite: strong high school algebra background or successful completion of MAT-107. [4 credits]

  • Calculus II: MAT-212 (4 credits)

    Studies trigonometric functions, integration by parts and tables, improper integrals, functions of two variables, partial derivatives, double integrals, differential equations, geometric and power series, basic convergence tests, Taylor polynomials and series, and Fourier polynomials and series. Applications are considered throughout the course with an emphasis on the life sciences. Weekly laboratory is an integral part of the course. Graphing calculator is used to explore topics covered. Prerequisite: Calculus I or placement into MAT-212. [4 credits]

  • Basic Statistics: MAT-215 (3 credits)

    Introduces the basic ideas of statistics: descriptive statistics, central tendency variability, probability distributions, sampling, estimation, hypothesis testing, correlation and regression, multinomial experiments, contingency tables and analysis of variance. A statistical software package is used. Designed for students in a variety of fields that rely on regular statistical analysis in decision-making. Fulfills general education requirement in mathematics. Prerequisite: A strong algebraic background (as evidenced by placement test) or successful completion of MAT 100 or MAT 103 is recommended. [3 credits]

  • General Physics I: PHY-101 (4 credits)

    Studies the fundamental physical laws of nature and their use in understanding natural phenomena. Course provides a knowledge base for study in all areas of science and mathematics. Topics include kinematics, dynamics of motion, Newton's laws, rotational mechanics and conservation of energy and momentum. Development of the concepts of vector algebra and calculus are provided as needed. Three lectures, one three-hour laboratory weekly. Fulfills general education requirement in natural science. [4 credits]

  • General Physics II: PHY-102 (4 credits)

    Continues studies of the fundamental physical laws of nature and their use in understanding natural phenomena. Topics include classical wave motion, acoustics, optics, electricity and magnetism. Development of the concepts of vector algebra and calculus are provided as needed. Three lectures, one three-hour laboratory weekly. [4 credits]

Four-Year Plan

Below is a sample program of study for the biology major. Many alternatives are possible; please consult a department representative to discuss options.

Students should select courses with the assistance of a faculty adviser and be aware that course cycling will impact upper-level course selection.

Fall Spring
First Year   
IDS-100 Perspectives on Education 3 BIO-239 Genetics 4
BIO-111 Fundamentals of Biology 4 CHM-111 General Chemistry II 4
CHM-110 General Chemistry I 4 General Education/Electives 6-9
General Education/Electives 3-6 [14-17 credits]  
[14-17 credits]      
Second Year  
BIO-239 Unity and Diversity 4 One or two 300- or 400-level Biology 3-8
CHM-210 Organic Chemistry I 4 CHM-211 Organic Chemistry II 4
MAT-211 Calculus I 4 MAT-212 Calculus II 4
General Education/Electives 3-6 General Education/Electives 3-6
[15-18 credits]   [14-18 credits]  
Third Year  
One or two 300- or 400-level Biology 3-8 One or two 300- or 400-level Biology 3-8
PHY-101 General Physics I 4 PHY-102 General Physics II 4
General Education/Electives 3-6 General Education/Electives 3-6
[14-18 credits]   [14-18 credits]  
Fourth Year  
One or two 300- or 400-level Biology 3-8 One or two 300- or 400-level Biology 3-8
General Education/Electives 3-9 BIO-451 Senior Seminar 2
[14-18 credits]   General Education/Electives 3-9
    [14-18 credits]  

What to Expect Studying at Notre Dame of Maryland University

Small classes, lectures and seminars explore current trends and provide a climate for individualized learning.

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What's Next: School of Pharmacy at NDMU

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Research & Internship Opportunities

As a biology major, you are encouraged to pursue basic or applied research either on-campus or at local universities or research institutions.

Opportunities to present your work include Notre Dame's annual research symposium in April, Nancy Kreiter Student Research Day, and at local and national meetings featuring undergraduate research. 

Note: The Biology Department does not participate in or otherwise facilitate experimentation with live laboratory vertebrates.

Examples of Research Opportunities

Internships in the biological sciences or in medical or allied health fields are available during the fall, winter, spring and summer semesters.

Biology Careers

We prepare you for employment opportunities in research laboratories, medical and government facilities, pharmaceutical companies and other industries.

Possible Career Opportunities

  • Nursing
  • Dentistry
  • Pharmacy
  • Physical Therapy
  • Veterinary Medicine
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Biotechnology
  • Public Health
  • Wildlife Conservation
  • Zoos and Aquaria
  • Forensic Science
  • Food Science
  • Marine Biology
  • Botany and Plant Science
  • Biostatistics
  • Biological Engineering
  • Bioethics
  • Environmental Careers
  • Fisheries and Forestry