Apr 16, 2024  
2016 Undergraduate Catalog 1.1 (WINTER - SPRING) 
2016 Undergraduate Catalog 1.1 (WINTER - SPRING) [ARCHIVED CATALOG - Consult with Your Academic Advisor for Your Catalog Year]

Biology (B.S.)

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(Bachelor of Science Degree)*

Biology is the science of life and its processes. It includes study and research related to the structure, function, growth, origin, evolution, and distribution of living organisms. The major in biology offers a variety of career opportunities in at least five different areas: Medical (dentistry, medicine, optometry, pharmacy, podiatry, public health, chiropractic, veterinary medicine, physician’s assistant, audiologist/speech therapist); Teaching (college, secondary, elementary, drug counselling); Research (academic, government, private); Environmental (forestry, wildlife management, park management, range management, pollution measurement and control); and Commercial (laboratory equipment and pharmaceutical sales, technical writing).

Most of these careers require training in addition to a major in biology. Those interested should investigate specific course requirements for entrance into professional or graduate school and discuss these options with their academic adviser. Students considering public school teaching as a career should refer to the programs in education, listed alphabetically in this section of the catalog.

Total credit hours required for degree: 128

Learning Objectives

Graduates will:

  • Understand general principles of biology, including:
    • Critical thinking and the process of scientific inquiry;
    • Mechanisms of evolutionary change in populations;
    • Biological structure and processes at the molecular, cellular, tissue, organ system, organism, population, community, and ecosystem levels;
    • Statistical analyses and graphical presentation of data; and
    • Nature and importance of biodiversity.
  • Graduates will be proficient in research and technical skills including experimental design, microscopy, molecular techniques, basic biochemical analyses, dissection, and computer use.
  • Graduates will have skills in oral and written scientific presentation and the critical analysis and use of the biological primary literature.
  • Graduates will integrate skills that collectively promote scholarship, responsible citizenship, and lifelong learning.

Academic Requirements

See Core  section of this catalog.

Core: 28 - 46 Credit Hours

Major Course Requirements

14 Credit Hours

Foundations of Biology

(five courses)

Upper Level Biology Electives

  • Biology Elective Courses at the 300, 400, or 500 level* (11)
11 Credit Hours

3 credit Hours

Total Biology Coursework: 47-48

19 Credit Hours

Total Hours Required in Major: 66-67


*Students will be required to earn a grade of C or better in BIO 211  before enrolling in any subsequent Biology courses that are required for the Biology major.


The student must complete sufficient elective courses to earn at least the minimum credits hours for this degree and at least 64 credits of the 128 required must be in the liberal arts and sciences.

Areas of Emphasis

Biology majors, with their advisers, can tailor the curriculum to help prepare themselves for their future goals, for example:

Pre-professional and Academic: This emphasis should satisfy the needs of students intending to apply to professional or graduate schools and should include Organic Chemistry (CHE 331  and CHE 332 ), Calculus (MAT 201 ), and two semesters of a foreign language.

Educational: This concentration encourages those students intending to be secondary or elementary school teachers to meet state certification requirements in areas in addition to biology (i.e. earth science and general science). Students take education and science courses in areas where certification is desired.

General: This emphasis adds flexibility through sampling courses outside the field of biology. Students take six hours of non-biological science courses.

Biology Honors:

In order to be considered for Honors in Biology, the following requirements must be satisfied.

  1. The student must have Biology GPA of at least 3.4 in all Biology courses taken at Utica College and an overall GPA of at least 3.0.
  2. The student must take BIO 450  in their junior or senior year and present their findings at the Annual Undergraduate Research Conference.
  3. The Biology Faculty will evaluate the student’s credentials and then select those who shall receive Honors. The student’s participation in departmental activities will also be considered.

For those students selected, the transcript will read Bachelor of Science with Honors in Biology.

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