Requirements

Biology Major


Students majoring in biology can meet their major requirements by completing either the Integrative Biology concentration, the Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology concentration, or the Molecular and Cellular Biology concentration. Each concentration consists of twelve courses, including at least eight courses in the department, exclusive of independent study or honors projects and courses below 1100.

Integrative Biology Concentration

Required Courses
BIOL 1102Biological Principles II1
or BIOL 1109 Scientific Reasoning in Biology
Select one of the following:1
CHEM 1092
Introductory Chemistry and Quantitative Reasoning II
CHEM 1102
Introductory Chemistry II
CHEM 1109
General Chemistry
any other CHEM course above 1092
Select two courses higher than 1100 from any two of the following departments: computer science, earth and oceanographic science, physics or MATH 1300 or higher a2
Select one 2000-level course (or above) in any of the natural sciences including biology (division a courses), or one course in MATH 1300 or higher1
Select one core course from each of the three groups below: b3
Group 1
BIOL 2112
Genetics and Molecular Biology
BIOL 2118
Microbiology
BIOL 2124
Biochemistry and Cell Biology
BIOL 2135
Neurobiology
BIOL 2175
Developmental Biology
Group 2
BIOL 2135
Neurobiology
BIOL 2175
Developmental Biology
BIOL 2210
Plant Ecophysiology
BIOL 2214
Comparative Physiology
Group 3
BIOL 2315
Behavioral Ecology and Population Biology
BIOL 2316
Evolution
BIOL 2319
Biology of Marine Organisms
BIOL 2325
Biodiversity and Conservation Science
BIOL 2327
Ecology
BIOL 2330 Marine Molecular Ecology and Evolution
Select four elective courses c4

Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology Concentration

Required Courses
BIOL 1102Biological Principles II1
or BIOL 1109 Scientific Reasoning in Biology
Select one of the following:1
CHEM 1092
Introductory Chemistry and Quantitative Reasoning II
CHEM 1102
Introductory Chemistry II
CHEM 1109
General Chemistry
any other CHEM course above 1092
Select one of the following:1
a mathematics course 1300 or higher
PSYC 2520
Data Analysis
BIOL 3308
Research in Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology
Foundation in Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology
Select two of the following:2
BIOL 2327
Ecology
BIOL 2316
Evolution
BIOL 2319
Biology of Marine Organisms
or BIOL 2333
Benthic Ecology
Breadth in the biological sciences
Select one from each of the following groups:2
Molecular and Cellular Biology
BIOL 2112
Genetics and Molecular Biology
BIOL 2118
Microbiology
BIOL 2124
Biochemistry and Cell Biology
BIOL 2175
Developmental Biology
Integrative Physiology
BIOL 2210
Plant Ecophysiology
BIOL 2214
Comparative Physiology
BIOL 2135
Neurobiology
Advanced topics in Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology
Select two from the advanced topics options:2
BIOL 2503
Methods in Ocean Change Ecology
BIOL 2554
Biomechanics
BIOL 2557
Immunology
BIOL 2581
Forest Ecology and Conservation
BIOL 3280
Plant Responses to the Environment
BIOL 3117
Current Topics in Marine Science
BIOL 3307
Evolutionary Developmental Biology
BIOL 3309
Ecotoxicology
BIOL 3317
Molecular Evolution
BIOL 3381
Ecological Genetics
Natural and Computational Science
Select two of the following:2
BIOL 1101
Biological Principles I
BIOL 1174
Biomathematics
BIOL 2210
Plant Ecophysiology (if not used to meet another requirement)
BIOL 2319
Biology of Marine Organisms (if not used to meet another requirement)
BIOL 2333
Benthic Ecology (if not used to meet another requirement)
BIOL 3314
Advanced Genetics and Epigenetics
CHEM 2050
Environmental Chemistry
CSCI 1101
Introduction to Computer Science (or higher)
ENVS 2004
Understanding Place: GIS and Remote Sensing
ENVS 2201
Perspectives in Environmental Science
EOS 1505
Oceanography
EOS 2005
Biogeochemistry: An Analysis of Global Change
EOS 2525
Marine Biogeochemistry
PHYS 1130
Introductory Physics I
or PHYS 1140
Introductory Physics II

Molecular and Cellular Biology Concentration

Required Courses d
Introductory Biology1
BIOL 1102
Biological Principles II
or BIOL 1109
Scientific Reasoning in Biology
Foundation in Molecular and Cellular Biology4
BIOL 2112
Genetics and Molecular Biology
BIOL 2124
Biochemistry and Cell Biology
BIOL 2118
Microbiology
or BIOL 2175
Developmental Biology
BIOL 2316
Evolution
Advanced Topics in Molecular and Cellular Biology1
Select one of the following:
BIOL 2551 Molecular Ecology
BIOL 2553
Neurophysiology
BIOL 2566
Molecular Neurobiology
BIOL 2557
Immunology
BIOL 3303
Topics in Cancer Biology
BIOL 3304
The RNA World
BIOL 3314
Advanced Genetics and Epigenetics
BIOL 3317
Molecular Evolution
BIOL 3333
Advanced Cell and Molecular Biology
Seminar in Molecular and Cellular Biology1
Select one from the following:
BIOL 3303
Topics in Cancer Biology
BIOL 3304
The RNA World
BIOL 3307
Evolutionary Developmental Biology
BIOL 3314
Advanced Genetics and Epigenetics
BIOL 3317
Molecular Evolution
BIOL 3333
Advanced Cell and Molecular Biology
Other Natural and Computational Science courses
Select one of the following:1
CHEM 1092
Introductory Chemistry and Quantitative Reasoning II
CHEM 1102
Introductory Chemistry II
CHEM 1109
General Chemistry
Any other CHEM course above the introductory level
CHEM 2250Organic Chemistry I1
Select two physical, mathematical, statistical, or computational courses, each from a different group below: 2
Computer Science above 1100
Physics above 1100
Math above 1299 or PSYC 2520
Select one of the following:1
BIOL 1101
Biological Principles I
Any BIOL course numbered 2000 or higher
CHEM 2320
Biochemistry

Students are advised to complete BIOL 1102 Biological Principles II or BIOL 1109 Scientific Reasoning in Biology and courses in chemistry for the major by the end of the sophomore year. Students planning postgraduate education in science or the health professions should note that graduate and professional schools may have additional admissions requirements in chemistry, mathematics, and physics. It is strongly advised that students consult with faculty on the design of their major and discuss the options of research projects through independent studies, fellowship-funded summer research, and honors projects. Students planning careers in the health professions should contact Seth Ramus, director of health professions advising.

The biology department participates in the biochemistry, environmental studies, and neuroscience programs. Students majoring or minoring in biology may not also major in biochemistry or neuroscience.

With departmental approval, students are allowed to count courses taken at a different college or university toward the major.

Biology Minor

The minor consists of five courses within the department, exclusive of independent study and courses below the 1100 level.

Required Courses
BIOL 1102Biological Principles II1
or BIOL 1109 Scientific Reasoning in Biology
Select two core courses e,f,g2
Select two elective courses above the 1100 level h,i2

Additional Information and Department Policies

Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate credits may not be used to fulfill any of the course requirements for the major.

Grade Requirements

Only one D grade is allowed in courses required for the major or minor. This D must be offset by a grade of B or higher in another course also required for the major or minor. Courses that count toward the major or minor must be taken for regular letter grades (not Credit/D/Fail).


This is an excerpt from the official Bowdoin College Catalogue and Academic Handbook. View the Catalogue