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Program Details

Biology [BIO] (Major)

The biology major provides a solid foundation in biology yet retains considerable flexibility. Students in this major can prepare for a variety of biology-related employment opportunities or for entry into graduate or professional schools.

Career Potential

  • Medical professions
  • Environmental biologist
  • Research scientist
  • Laboratory technologist
  • Molecular biologist

A. Biology Courses: 36 credit hours
  • BIO 201 - Biological Sciences I (4 cr. hr.)
  • BIO 202 - Biological Sciences II (4 cr. hr.)
  • BIO 210 - Cellular Biology (4 cr. hr.)
  • BIO 312 - Genetics (4 cr. hr.)
  • BIO 319 - Biological Literature (1 cr. hr.)
  • BIO 412 - General Ecology (4 cr. hr.)
Select 15 additional credit hours of biology elective courses

Biology elective course are defined as biology courses at the BIO 210 level or above open to biology majors.

B. Related Science and Math Courses: 26 credit hours
  • CHE 221 - General Chemistry I (4 cr. hr.)
  • CHE 222 - General Chemistry II (4 cr. hr.)
  • CHE 301 - Organic Chemistry I (4 cr. hr.)
  • MAT 121 - Calculus A (3 cr. hr.)
  • Select one physics sequence:

  • PHY 105 - Elementary Mechanics and Heat (4 cr. hr.) and
  • PHY 106 - Elementary Electricity, Light and Sound (4 cr. hr.)
    or
  • PHY 201 - Principles of Physics I (4 cr. hr.) and
  • PHY 202 - Principles of Physics II (4 cr. hr.)
Select Either
  • GLY 281 - Data Analysis in Natural Science (3 cr. hr.) or
  • MAT 122 - Calculus B (3 cr. hr.) or
  • MAT 201 - Statistical Methods (3 cr. hr.)
C. Additional Requirements for the B.A.: 62 credit hours
  • Composition and General Education Courses: 27 credit hours
  • Foreign Language Courses: 0-12 credit hours
  • Free Elective Courses as needed to complete the 124 credit hour total
D. Additional Requirements for the B.S.: 62 credit hours

Students are required to complete 72 credit hours of science and math courses which may be taken from the following prefixes: BIO, BMS, CAP (except CAP??100 &??104), CHE (except CHE 224, 225, 305 &??306), CON, ENS, GLY, MAT MCS, PHY.

Additional requirements include:

  • Composition and General Education Courses: 27 credit hours
  • Foreign Language Courses: 0-3 credit hours
  • Additional Science or Math: 10 credit hours
  • Free Elective Courses as needed to complete the 124 credit hour total
Total Credit Hours Required for Graduation: 124
Example of the B.S. in Biology over four years
First Year
Fall Total credit hours: 16-17

Foreign language or GE course
BIO 201 - Biological Sciences I (4 cr. hr.)
CHE 221 - General Chemistry I (4 cr. hr.)
CHE 224 - Problem-Solving in General Chemistry I (1 cr. hr.)
COR 101 - The Cortland Experience: A First Year Seminar (1 cr. hr.)
CPN 100 - Writing Studies I (3 cr. hr.) or
CPN 102 - Writing Studies in the Community I (4 cr. hr.)

Spring Total credit hours: 15-16

Foreign language or GE course
BIO 202 - Biological Sciences II (4 cr. hr.)
CHE 222 - General Chemistry II (4 cr. hr.)
CHE 225 - Problem-Solving in General Chemistry II (1 cr. hr.)
CPN 101 - Writing Studies II (3 cr. hr.) or
CPN 103 - Writing Studies in the Community II (4 cr. hr.)

Second Year
Fall Total credit hours: 15

GE course
BIO 210 - Cellular Biology (4 cr. hr.)
BIO 319 - Biological Literature (1 cr. hr.)
CHE 301 - Organic Chemistry I (4 cr. hr.)
GLY 281 - Data Analysis in Natural Science (3 cr. hr.)

Spring Total credit hours: 16

GE course
Free elective
GE course or free elective
BIO 312 - Genetics (4 cr. hr.)
MAT 121 - Calculus A (3 cr. hr.)

Third Year
Fall Total credit hours: 15

Biology elective
GE course
Second Biology elective or Science elective
PHY 105 - Elementary Mechanics and Heat (4 cr. hr.)

Spring Total credit hours: 15-16

Biology electives
Science or math elective
GE course
PHY 106 - Elementary Electricity, Light and Sound (4 cr. hr.)

Fourth Year
Fall Total credit hours: 16-18

Biology elective
Science or math elective
Free elective
Free elective
BIO 412 - General Ecology (4 cr. hr.)

Spring Total credit hours: 15-16

Biology elective
Biology elective
GE course
Free elective
Free elective