What Classes Do You Need To Get A Bachelors Degree in Biology?

The classes required for a biology major depend on a number of factors, including the type of bachelor's degree program being offered and the electives that must be chosen. Additionally, some bachelor's degree programs in biology require more classes than others. Continue reading to discover the courses required earn a bachelor's degree in biology.

Required Classes for Biology Majors

All biology bachelor's degree programs include key science-related courses for graduation. However, class requirements may vary depending on whether a student earns a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science in Biology. Students who choose a biology concentration as part of their major may also take different science classes.

Required Classes for Bachelor of Science Programs

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) programs in biology often include more science courses than Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) programs. Required courses for B.S. programs might include genetics, chemistry, physics and quantitative biology with labs, computer science and mathematics courses in areas such as calculus, statistics and linear algebra. Electives can be chosen from topics such as cellular and molecular biology, ecology, population biology and organismal biology.

Additionally, many B.S. programs require students to complete a research project. This project may take place during the student's senior year and is sponsored by a faculty member from the biology department. Areas of concentration for the project can include wildlife and fisheries biology, physiological ecology, mammalogy, botany or parasitology.

Required Classes for Bachelor of Arts Programs

Students in Bachelor of Arts programs in biology often take fewer science classes and more liberal arts courses than students enrolled in Bachelor of Science programs. Additional courses taken by B.A. in Biology students may include arts, humanities, social sciences, oral communication and a foreign language. This program is often targeted towards those who wish to become biology teachers, as opposed to those who wish to work in research or medicine.

Required science courses for B.A. programs include biology, chemistry, physics, zoology and genetics. Students are also required to take electives, although they usually get to choose which electives they want to take. Electives might include anatomy, physiology, microbiology, marine biology and molecular genetics. Additionally, students are typically required to complete science labs and mathematics courses.

Biology Degree Concentration Classes

Rather than just majoring in general biology, students also may have the option of selecting a concentration. Concentrations are numerous and include cell and molecular biology, integrated health promotion and environmental biology.

Cell and Molecular Biology

Students in this concentration learn about cells, their structure and how they work. They also learn how to correct disease states. This training opens the door to careers as laboratory technicians or research associates at medical schools, universities, government agencies and biotechnology industry research firms.

Integrated Health Promotion

This concentration typically includes courses in kinesiology, exercise physiology, wellness, spirituality and nutrition. Students also take electives in areas such as gerontology and sports nutrition.

Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology

Course topics for this concentration include botany, plant and insect interactions, zoology and animal behavior. Students also complete labs and field-based courses. The ecology, evolution and environmental biology concentration prepares students for careers in environmental studies, organismal biology and related fields.

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