Major and Minors


The Department of Biology prepares students for a broad spectrum of careers in the life sciences. The curriculum provides:

  • hands-on experience with modern instrumentation
  • a diversity of lecture, laboratory and field courses
  • ample opportunities to conduct research at the university
  • all prerequisites for professional health programs (medical, dental, pharmacy and veterinary schools)
  • a framework for ethical issues inherent to science and technology


Our department offers two concentrations that provide a more in-depth examination of the life sciences:

Molecular Biology Emphasis

The molecular biology emphasis prepares students for positions in academic, clinical or industrial biotechnology laboratories. It also prepares students for graduate study in genetics, molecular biology and other fields of the life sciences.

Ecology Emphasis

The ecology emphasis prepares students for careers in research, consulting, and outreach focused on ecology and the environment. It also prepares students for graduate study in marine and terrestrial ecology, astrobiology, environmental science, and medicine.

Honors Program

The Department of Biology offers a Bachelor of Science Degree with Honors that requires a research thesis. The program is designed to provide undergraduate students with opportunities to conduct original, high caliber research in preparation for graduate school, professional training, or a position in an industrial or government research laboratory.


See our catalog for degree requirements, program learning outcomes, and courses.

Contact Info

Department of Biology

Mon-Fri, 9a.m. - 5p.m.

Harney Science Center 256 (415) 422-6755 (415) 422-6363