Study life! What could be more fascinating—and what could prepare you better to contribute to the future we share with each other and with the rest of the planet's inhabitants? Our biology courses teach our current understanding of organisms and their amazing processes, structures, and interactions, and provide training in the logical and analytical approaches that produce our theories.
Upper-division courses offer advanced study and rigorous training in diverse fields of biology. All courses are taught in a highly personalized environment of encouragement, support, and guidance, and students have opportunities to work directly with professors in the laboratory and field. The Biology teaching and research laboratories in the Betty Irene Moore Natural Sciences Building are newly renovated, and the resources of the Bay Area are utilized for field trips.
The Jill Barrett Research Program in Biology provides financial support for students to carry out mentored summer research projects with faculty in the lab or at local field sites, and undergraduate research teams operate year-round. The Joseph & Vera Long Foundation Research Lab and the William Joseph McInnes Memorial Botanic Garden provide well-equipped research facilities. The Biology Department is also home to the W.M. Keck Foundation Zoology Laboratory which houses an impressive collection of museum-quality vertebrate and invertebrate specimens for the study of zoology, behavior, ecology and comparative anatomy.
Biology majors select one of three options: general biology, biology with a concentration in ecology, evolution and behavior (EEB), or biology with a concentration in cell and molecular biology (CMB). General biology and EEB students can pursue either a BA or a BS degree; CMB students can pursue a BA degree.All students share the same set of core courses, and write and present a senior thesis, based either on synthesis of primary literature articles on a focused topic or on their own empirical research.
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- General Biology I with Lab
- General Biology II with Lab
- General Chemistry I
- General Chemistry II
- Organic Chemistry I
- Organic Chemistry II
- Calculus I
- Introduction to Statistics
Select four additional upper-division biology courses, at least three of which must be courses with a lab, plus BIO 191 below: