The program in biological sciences provides a strong foundation in biology and is ideal for students desiring a liberal education emphasizing an interdisciplinary approach to a thorough understanding of the life sciences. The program offers a major in Biology and minors in Biology, Biotechnology, and Neuroscience. The Biological Sciences majors study life, living organisms, and vital processes. Within this broad context, students will have a more individualized learning experience in their selection of customized courses in accord with student’s area of interest such as cell and molecular biology, evolution and environment, physiology and neurosciences, and pre-professional. Students completing the biological sciences program will be equipped with the tools needed to be successful and competitive in diverse areas of biology, including teaching; governmental, industrial, and biomedical research laboratories; or graduate or professional studies in any of several concentrations within the biological sciences as well as the health professions.
Student Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of the program, the student will:
- Demonstrate both in-depth and broad knowledge of the concepts comprising the biological sciences.
- Integrate knowledge across sub-disciplines of biology.
- Demonstrate basic laboratory skills, including quantitative (and qualitative) skills.
- Demonstrate critical thinking skills, including developing hypotheses and designing, conducting, analyzing, and interpreting experiments.
- Communicate biological knowledge effectively in written and oral form.
General Major Requirements
Students majoring in biology must satisfy the general education course requirements, complete the required major courses outlined and take electives for a minimum total of 120 semester hours in order to graduate. The second number indicates the number of credits, e.g., Bio 2301denotes three credits. Where noted by an asterisk (*), a particular course can be taken as part of the general education requirements. A minimum grade of C− or better is required in each biology and chemistry course.
Foundation Courses (22 Semester Hours)
The following courses are required to lay the foundation for both breadth and depth study.
BIO 2301/2101 General Biology I and Lab* (4 SH)
BIO 2302/2012 General Biology II and Lab* (4 SH)
BIO 2303 Scientific Writing* (3 SH)
CHE 2311/2111 General Chemistry I and Lab* (4 SH)
CHE 2312/2112 General Chemistry II and Lab* (4 SH)
MAT 2317 Calculus I* (3 SH) (prerequisites may be taken as general education requirements)
Breadth (23 Semester Hours)
These courses are required. To stay on track for on-time graduation, it is recommended that the courses be taken during the indicated semester. Where noted by an asterisk (*), a particular course can be taken as part of the general education requirements.
BIO 3366 Genetics (3 SH) (fall semester of the sophomore year)
BIO 3231/3232 Microbiology and Lab (4 SH) (spring semester of the sophomore year)
BIO 3337/3137 Biomolecules and Lab (4 SH) (fall semester of the junior year)
CHE 3326/3126 Organic Chemistry I (3 SH) (fall semester of the junior year)
CHE 3327/3127 Organic Chemistry II and Lab (5 SH) (optional; should be taken if students post graduate plans require this course, spring semester of the junior year)
PHY 2321/2121 Physics I and Lab* (4 SH) (fall semester of the junior year)
PHY 2322/2122 Physics II and Lab* (4 SH) (spring semester of the junior year)
Depth (21 Semester Hours)
Depth courses should be chosen in consult with the student’s academic advisor and in harmony with the student’s intended career path. Students should complete 15 semester hours from the list of electives.
Required Courses (8 Semester Hours):
BIO 4364/4164 Cell Biology and Lab (4 SH)
BIO 4276 Biology Seminar (2 SH)
BIO 4277 Investigation and Research III or BIO 3201 Tissue Culture (2 SH)
Elective Courses (15 Semester Hours):
BIO 2110 Zoology Laboratory
BIO 2111 Anatomy and Physiology I Laboratory
BIO 2112 Anatomy and Physiology II Laboratory
BIO 2116 Botany Laboratory
BIO 2277 Investigation and Research II
BIO 2310 Zoology
BIO 2311 Anatomy and Physiology I
BIO 2312 Anatomy and Physiology II
BIO 2316 Botany
BIO 3111 Fundamentals of Anatomy and Physiology Laboratory
BIO 3115 Introduction to Neuroscience Laboratory
BIO 3126 Parasitology Laboratory
BIO 3136 Developmental Biology Laboratory
BIO 3143 Histology Laboratory
BIO 3161 Human Physiology Laboratory
BIO 3171 Ecology and Evolution Laboratory
BIO 3225 Neuroscience Seminar
BIO 3277 Investigation and Research II
BIO 3305 Topics in Bioinformatics
BIO 3310 Biology of Aging
BIO 3311 Fundamentals of Anatomy and Physiology
BIO 3315 Introduction to Neuroscience
BIO 3326 Parasitology
BIO 3333 Field Biology
BIO 3336 Developmental Biology
BIO 3343 Histology
BIO 3361 Human Physiology
BIO 3371 Ecology and Evolution
BIO 3647 Research in Microbiology
BIO 4105 Integrative Metabolism Laboratory
BIO 4123 Immunology Laboratory
BIO 4146 Plant Physiology Laboratory
BIO 4176 Biochemistry Laboratory
BIO 4281 Mycology and Plant Pathology
BIO 4282 Mycology and Plant Physiology Laboratory
BIO 4305 Integrative Metabolism
BIO 4308 Virology
BIO 4323 Immunology
BIO 4346 Plant Physiology
BIO 4347 Molecular Genetics
BIO 4352 Introduction to Medical Physiology & Pharmacology I
BIO 4356 Economic Botany
BIO 4373 Toxicology
BIO 4374 Proteomics
BIO 4376 Biochemistry
BIO 4382 Cancer Biology
After meeting university, general education, and program graduation requirements, students can fill the remainder of the required 120 semester hours with general electives. The following courses are suggested as potential electives, which should be chosen based on the student’s personal interests and intended career path. Where noted by an asterisk (*), a particular course can be taken as part of the general education requirements. Where noted by two asterisks (**), the course can substitute for a Bio elective.
ART 2311 3-D Computer Modeling
CHE 3321/3121 Quantitative Analysis and Lab (satisfies the chemistry minor)
CHE 4346 - Biochemistry II**
CLS 2102 Medical Terminology
ECO 2310 Concepts of Health Economics
FIN 2356 Personal Finance
HED 2301 Nutrition
HIS 3351 History of Science
JUS 2320 Introduction to Forensic Science
MAT 2326 Elementary Statistics*
MIS 1380 Microcomputer Applications
MGT 3321 Principles of Management
PED 2321 Physiological Basis for Human Movement
PED 3321 Exercise Physiology
PED 3411 Kinesiological Basis of Human Movement
PHY 3325 - Introduction to Biophysics**
PSY 2326 Statistics for Social and Behavioral Science*
PSY 3301 Biological Psychology
PSY 3306 Abnormal Psychology
SOC 3315 Medical Sociology
SPH 2343 Voice and Diction
SPH 2346 Professional Presentations
If required by the graduate program, students planning on taking the Biology GRE should take BIO 3371 Ecology and Evolution and BIO 3311 Fundamentals of Anatomy and Physiology as either biology or other electives. Students planning on taking the Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology GRE should take BIO 4376 Biochemistry and BIO 4347 Molecular Genetics as either biology or other electives.
BIO 2101, BIO 2102, 2302, and a minimum of ten additional semester hours of biology courses at the 3000- or 4000-level. To satisfy this requirement, a C− or better must be earned in each biology course taken.
This minor program will provide the opportunity for STEM majors or other qualified students to develop their knowledge and skills in biotechnology. The program could be of particular benefit to students planning to pursue graduate degrees or to seek employment in areas related to molecular biology or biotechnology. Prerequisites include CHE 2111, CHE 2311, CHE 2112, and CHE 2312 (General Chemistry I and II) and CHE 3126 and CHE 3326 (Organic Chemistry I). For this minor, students must complete BIO 2301 (Principles of Biology), BIO 1315/1115 (Introduction to Molecular Biology and Biotechnology), and the following courses with a grade of C- or better in each course:
BIO 3231 Microbiology
BIO 3232 Microbiology Lab or BIO3247 Industrial l Microbiology Lab
BIO 3334 Molecular Biology and Biotechniques I or BIO 3335 Molecular Biology and Biotechniques II
BIO 4176 Biochemistry Lab (optional)
BIO 4376 Biochemistry
BIO 4277 Investigation and Research or 4406 Research or Internship
The Department of Biological Sciences allows students to complete a neuroscience minor at Wake Forest University (WFU) in conjunction with their B.S. in Biology at WSSU. In addition to completing the requirements for the biology major, students must complete a total of 18 hours of courses related to physiology and neuroscience. Neuroscience minor students are required to take the following courses at WFU (in sequence): NEU 200 (Introduction to Neuroscience, 3 credit hours); NEU 201 (Neuroscience Laboratory, 1 credit hour; NEU 300 (Neuroscience Seminar, 3 credit hours); NEU 391 (Research in Neuroscience, 2 credit hours, and may be taken concurrently with BIO4277); one WFU Elective Course (3 or 4 credit hours); and two WSSU Elective Courses (4 or 5 credit hours). WFU course credits will be transferred back to WSSU as part of the B.S. in Biology with Neuroscience Minor degree track from the department of Life Sciences. Alternatively, students can take all of the WFU courses at WSSU when they are offered on our department.