Jul 16, 2024  
2022-2023 Supplemental Undergraduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Supplemental Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Biology Major, BS

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Program Description

The Bachelors of Science (B.S.) degree in biology provides a strong foundation in life sciences emphasizing an interdisciplinary and liberal education approach. Biology majors study the diversity of life, and vital topics such as structure and function, evolution, genetics, and cellular and molecular biology.  Students considering a degree in the Biological Sciences can choose from two areas of concentration listed below. Both biology curricula lead to a variety of post-graduation school and career options.  Students are encouraged to examine the differences in course requirements and select a curriculum that best matches their academic and career interests.  Qualified students may also participate in the Nu Zeta Chapter of Beta Beta Beta, a national biological honors society.  


  • General Biology (GBIO)
  • Pre-Health Professional (HLT)

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.
  • Find, select, and evaluate various types of scientific information.

Major Requirements

Students majoring in biology must satisfy the general education course requirements, complete the required major and elective courses for a minimum total of 120 semester hours (SH) to graduate. To complete the major in biology, the student is required to complete 59 SH in the major.  The major components include 19 SH of Foundation courses (several of these courses can be taken as part of the general education (GE) requirements), 21 SH of Breadth courses, and 19 SH of Depth courses. The biology student must select a concentration (with associated depth courses) that best matches their academic and career interests.  

A minimum grade of C- or better is required in each of the Foundation, Breadth and Depth courses. 

Foundation Courses (19 Semester Hours)

The following foundation courses are required to prepare students for both breadth and depth studies.

Course Number/ Course Title Semester Hours
BIO 1313 - General Biology I  / BIO 1113 - General Biology I Laboratory  (GE) 4
BIO 1314 - General Biology II  / BIO 1114 - General Biology II Laboratory  (GE) 4
CHE 1313 - General Chemistry I  / CHE 1113 - General Chemistry I Laboratory  (GE) 4
CHE 1314 - General Chemistry II  /CHE 1114 - General Chemistry II Laboratory  (GE) 4

Select 1 of the following courses:

MAT 2326 - Elementary Statistics  (GE)

GER 2326 - Statistics for Social and Behavior Sciences  (GE)

PSY 2326 - Statistics for Social and Behavioral Science  (GE)

SOC 2326 - Statistics for the Social and Behavioral Sciences  (GE)

MAT 3310 - Probability and Statistics I  (GE)

EXS 2310 - Demystifying the Statistics of the Health Sciences  (GE)

MAT 2317 - Calculus I  (GE)




Total 19

Breadth Courses (21 Semester Hours)

Students are required to complete 10 SH of required courses and complete the remaining 11 hours by taking courses (with or without accompanying lab) from each of the Areas I, II, III, and IV.  Courses used to fulfill the breadth areas may not be used to fulfill depth concentration requirements.

Courses Number /Course Title Semester Hours

Required courses (10 SH)

BIO 3366 - Genetics   3

CHE 2326 - Organic Chemistry I  

(CHE 2126 - Organic Chemistry I Laboratory  optional)

PHY 1321 - College Physics I /PHY 1121 - College Physics I Laboratory   4

Area I: Biotechniques and Lab Skills (2 courses)

BIO 2110 - Zoology Laboratory  (1 SH)

BIO 2111 - Anatomy and Physiology I Laboratory  /(co-requisitie lab to BIO 2311 - Anatomy and Physiology I ) (1SH)

BIO 2116 - Botany Laboratory  /(co-requisite lab to BIO 2316 - Botany ) (1 SH)

BIO 2277 - Investigation and Research I  (2 SH)

BIO 3136 - Developmental Biology Laboratory  (1 SH)

BIO 3137 - Biomolecules Laboratory  (1 SH)

BIO 3143 - Histology Laboratory  (1 SH)

BIO 3166 - Genetics Laboratory  (1 SH)

BIO 3201 - Tissue Culture   (2 SH)

BIO 3232 - Microbiology Laboratory  / (co-requisite BIO 3231 - Microbiology ) (2 SH)

BIO 3277 - Investigation and Research II  

(pre-requisite BIO 2277 - Investigation and Research I ) (2 SH)







2 - 4


Area II: Cells & Molecules  (1 course) 

Optional laboratories may be taken with the lecture to fulfill the breadth hours.

BIO 3337 - Biomolecules    (3 SH)

(BIO 3137 - Biomolecules Laboratory  optional)

BIO 3342 - Introduction to Molecular Biology  (3 SH)

BIO 3343 - Histology  (3 SH)

(BIO 3143 - Histology Laboratory   optional)






Area III: Structure & Function (1 course)

Optional laboratories may be taken with the lecture to fulfill the breadth hours.

BIO 2311 - Anatomy and Physiology I  / BIO 2111 - Anatomy and Physiology I Laboratory  (3 SH)

BIO 3231 - Microbiology   /BIO 3232 - Microbiology Laboratory  (2 SH)

BIO 3336 - Developmental Biology  (3 SH)

(BIO 3136 - Developmental Biology Laboratory  optional)



2 - 3


Area IV: Heredity, Evolution, & Diversity (1 course) 

Optional laboratories may be taken with the course to fulfill the breadth hours.

BIO 2310 - Zoology  (3 SH)

(BIO 2110 - Zoology Laboratory  optional)

BIO 2316 - Botany   / BIO 2116 - Botany Laboratory  (3 SH)

BIO 3371 - Ecology and Evolution  (3 SH)

(BIO 3171 - Ecology and Evolution Laboratory  optional)




Total 21 


Depth Courses (19 Semester Hours)

The program offers two areas of concentration, General Biology (GBIO) and Pre-Health Professional (HLT).  Students must select a concentration that best matches their academic and career interests. 

General Biology Concentration

The General Biology concentration allows students to develop a broader understanding of the biological sciences.  Students will obtain a greater breadth of knowledge by completing additional coursework in breadth areas I, II, III and IV and BIO elective courses.  This concentration is particularly suited for students wanting to pursue careers in education, business, law, public health, government, pharmaceuticals, environmental health, biotechnology, and lab technicians. 

General Biology Concentration (≥ 19 SH) 

In the depth area, students must complete the following:

1. BIO 4276 - Senior Seminar  (2 SH)

2. Two courses in Breadth Area I and one course each in Breadth Areas II, III, and IV. (11 SH)

3. Elective 1: One upper level elective (2000 or above) in Biology (3 SH)

4. Elective 2: One upper level (2000 or above) in Biology, Chemistry, or Physics; or one of the courses listed below:

PSY 3301 - Brain and Behavior  (3 SH)

PSY 3346 - Principles of Learning  (3 SH)

PSY 4310 - Health Psychology  (3 SH)

SOC 2302 - Health & Society  (3 SH)

SOC 3315 - Medical Sociology  (3 SH)

SOC 3320 - Society and Public Health  (3 SH)

Pre-Health Professional Concentration

The Pre-Health Professional concentration allows students to explore courses that apply to clinical and research areas.  This concentration is designed to assist a student in gaining admission to and succeeding in a professional health program, including, but not limited to allopathic medicine, chiropractic medicine, dentistry, optometry, osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, physician assistant, physical therapy, podiatric medicine, veterinary medicine, and Ph.D. programs.   

Pre-Health Professional Concentration (> 19 SH)
In the depth area, students must complete the following:
Required Courses (8 SH)
Course Number /Course Title Semester Hours
BIO 3364 - Cell Biology   3
BIO 4276 - Senior Seminar   2
BIO 4376 - Biochemistry   3

Elective Lab Courses (9 SH)

Select three (two must be biology courses) 

Course Number /Course Title Semester Hours
BIO 2312 - Anatomy and Physiology II  /BIO 2112 - Anatomy and Physiology II Laboratory   4
BIO 4305 - Integrative Metabolism   3
BIO 4308 - Virology    3
BIO 4310 - Cancer Biology   3
BIO 4323 - Immunology   3
CHE 2327 - Organic Chemistry II   3
PHY 1322 - College Physics II   3
PSY 3301 - Brain and Behavior   3
PSY 3307 - Social Psychology   3
PSY 3308 - Cognitive Psychology   3
SOC 3315 - Medical Sociology   3

Lab Electives (2 SH)

Select two courses 

Course Number /Course Title Semester Hours
BIO 3164 - Cell Biology Laboratory   1
BIO 4105 - Integrative Metabolism Laboratory    1
BIO 4123 - Immunology Laboratory   1
BIO 4176 - Biochemistry Laboratory   1
BIO 4277 - Investigation and Research III   1

Minor Program

Biology Minor  


For more information, please visit the Department of Biological Sciences website and explore to the planning worksheets: https://www.wssu.edu/admissions/programs/biology.html

Articulation Agreements

Articulation Agreement for Davidson County Community College (DCCC) Associate in Applied Science (AAS) Degree Program - Zoo Science

Articulation Agreement for Davidson County Community College (DCCC) Associate in Applied Science (AAS) Degree Program - Aquarium Science

Articulation Agreement for Forsyth Technical Community College (FTCC) Associate in Applied Science (AAS) Degree Program - Biotechnology

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