School of Humanities and Sciences

Department of Biology

Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science

Susan Swensen, Associate Professor and Chair

The biology department offers a liberal arts education with a major in biology, giving a strong foundation for continued study at the graduate level. This curriculum also provides preparation for entering the health professions (dentistry, medicine, optometry, osteopathy, podiatry, and veterinary medicine) and paramedical fields. Other career opportunities exist in laboratories, pharmaceutical and chemical companies, governmental and environmental agencies, and other organizations that require personnel with a biology background.

The curriculum also allows for preparation and certification in secondary teaching in biology with either a major or a minor in biology.

Biology, B.A.
Biology, B.A. with Teaching Option
Biology, B.S.
Minor in Biology

Biology-Optometry 3-1 Program

This joint program with an optometry college is available to biology majors and enables students to enter optometry college after three years of undergraduate study. Ithaca College requirements for graduation, as well as most of the biology requirements, must be fulfilled during the first 90 credits of this program. After acceptance by the optometry college, and on successful completion of the first year of optometry college, the bachelor's degree in biology is awarded by Ithaca College. This program must be carefully planned with the student's adviser.
Optometry 3-1 Program

Requirements for Honors in Biology

Students with a minimum GPA in biology courses of 3.50 and an overall GPA of 3.30 may apply for honors after they have completed (or are currently enrolled in) BIOL 30200 Research in Biology but no later than the end of the junior year. Application must be made to the Biology Curriculum Committee for admission to honors. The application must include current GPAs (in biology and overall) and a one-page summary of the proposed research project. The curriculum committee reviews the qualifications of the applicants, certifies that faculty sponsorship has been obtained, and then makes its recommendations to the department. The faculty of the biology department votes on acceptance or rejection of the curriculum committee's recommendation.

When a student is accepted for honors, an honors committee is formed, consisting of the faculty sponsor (project director) and two other faculty members, one of whom must be from the biology department. The student designs the yearlong honors project in consultation with the faculty sponsor and must write up a proposal describing this project, which is then submitted to the honors committee. The honors committee monitors the progress of the project and the academic performance of the student.

The student must write a paper summarizing his or her research and give an oral presentation to the department at the end of the second semester of the project. The honors committee will make the determination whether or not to grant honors in biology.

A detailed description of the honors requirements and deadlines is available from the faculty adviser.

Courses for Nonmajors

The biology department offers several courses of interest to the nonmajor. These courses have numbers between BIOL 10000 and BIOL 12000.

Requirements for the Major in Biology -- B.A.

Biology, chemistry, and mathematics

Biology

BIOL 12100, BIOL 12200, BIOL 22700, BIOL 27100, BIOL 30100, BIOL 30200,
BIOL 35400, BIOL 41100, BIOL 41200


26

Three elective courses in biology (one must be at level 3 or level 4)

10-12

Total

36-38

Courses that do not count as biology electives include any courses listed as required; any level-1 courses; BIOL 20000; BIOL 20500; BIOL 21000; BIOL 30000; BIOL 40000; BIOL 40100; and BIOL 40200. Biochemistry I and II (BIOC 35300 and BIOC 35400) and BIOC 48100 Special Topics: Biochemistry may count as biology electives.

Chemistry

CHEM 12100 or CHEM 12300, CHEM 12400, CHEM 22100, CHEM 22200,
CHEM 22500, CHEM 23200


17

Mathematics

MATH 10800 or MATH 11100 or MATH 14500

     4

Total, biology, chemistry, and mathematics

57-59

Required courses outside biology, chemistry, and mathematics

Total

33-36

Electives

In any area to complete the 120 credits necessary for graduation

25-30

Total, B.A. in biology

120

Advanced placement (AP) credit in biology is accepted under the following policy:

  1. A student with an AP test score of 5 may receive course-specific credit (e.g., BIOL 11900, BIOL 12000 or BIOL 12100, BIOL 12200) provided there is evidence in the AP course of a laboratory component and a passing score on an exam administered by the department. If a student receives course-specific AP credit, he or she cannot also receive credit for taking the course.
  2. A student with an AP test score of 3, 4, or 5 will receive elective credit without particular designation. Students with AP test scores below 3 will not receive credit.

Requirements for the Major in Biology -- B.A. with Teaching Option

Biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics

Biology

BIOL 12100, BIOL 12200, BIOL 22400 or BIOL 47800, BIOL 22700, BIOL 27100,
BIOL 30100, BIOL 30200, BIOL 35400, BIOL 41100, BIOL 41200


29

One elective course in biology

3-4

Total, biology

32-33

Courses that do not count as biology electives include any courses listed as required; any level-1 courses; BIOL 20000; BIOL 20500; BIOL 21000; BIOL 30000; BIOL 40000; BIOL 40100; and BIOL 40200. Biochemistry I and II (BIOC 35300 and BIOC 35400) may be used as biology electives, but no other courses in biochemistry may count.

Chemistry

CHEM 12100 or CHEM 12300, CHEM 12400, CHEM 22100

9

Physics or chemistry

PHYS 10100, PHYS 10200 or PHYS 11700, PHYS 11800, PHYS 12000 or CHEM 22200,
CHEM 22500, CHEM 23200


8-9

Mathematics

MATH 10800 or MATH 11100 or MATH 11200 or MATH 14500

4

Total, biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics

53-55

Core education requirements

COMP 20100

Technology for the Middle/Secondary School Teacher

2

EDUC 22900

Second Language Acquisition: Its Nature and Meaning for Educators

2

EDUC 23900

Educating Children with Special Needs

2

PSYC 21010

Educational Psychology

3

EDUC 10100 Literacy Education for the Middle/Secondary School Teacher 2
EDUC 21910 Early Field Experience: Theory and Practice 3

EDUC 34000

Social and Cultural Foundations of Education

3

EDUC 40810

Pedagogy and Practice across the Disciplines

3

EDUC 41010

Pedagogy and Practice for the Science Teacher

3

EDUC 41210

Seminar in Reflective Practice

3

EDUC 49810

Professional Semester in Education

12

EDUC 11000

Child Abuse Identification and Prevention

0

EDUC 11100

Drug and Alcohol Abuse: Identification and Prevention

0

Total, core education requirements

38

Additional Requirements

  • All teaching-option students must successfully complete a year of college-level study in a language other than English. Students may test out of this requirement by taking the language placement test and placing at level 2.

  • All teaching-option students must successfully complete a writing course numbered WRTG 10600 or above.

  • All teaching-option students must successfully complete the second-year review and maintain a minimum GPA of 2.75 in their subject. If a student receives an unsuccessful review or a review with stipulations, the student must participate in and successfully pass a second review the following year. Unsuccessful reviews and reviews with stipulations will be accompanied by a written statement outlining what must be done before the second review is completed.

  • Students must earn a grade of B or better in EDUC 40810 and EDUC 41010 to qualify for student teaching. A grade of B- does not qualify.

  • EDUC 49810 Professional Semester in Education and EDUC 41210 Seminar in Reflective Practice constitute a full course load during the student-teaching semester. No additional courses may be taken.

  • All candidates for initial certification must successfully complete all three sections of the New York State Teacher Certification Examinations: the liberal arts and sciences test, the assessment of teaching skills (written), and the content area exam.

  • The student's department chair and the coordinator of teacher education must approve any exceptions to the above requirements.

Electives

Outside biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics -- to complete humanities and sciences general education requirements

26-29

Total, B.A. in biology with teaching option

120

Requirements for the Major in Biology -- B.S.

Required courses within the department

BIOL 12100

Principles of Biology

4

BIOL 12200

Principles of Biology

4

BIOL 22700

Genetics

4

BIOL 27100

General Ecology

4

BIOL 30100

Literature in Biology

2

BIOL 30200

Research in Biology

3

BIOL 35400

Cell Biology

4

BIOL 41100

Biology Seminar

0.5

BIOL 41200

Biology Seminar

0.5

Three elective courses in biology 11-12

Total, requirements in the department

37-38

Courses that do not count as biology electives include any courses listed as required; any level-1 course; BIOL 20000; BIOL 20500; BIOL 21000, BIOL 30000; BIOL 40000; BIOL 40100; BIOL 40200. Biochemistry I and II (BIOC 35300 and BIOC 35400) and Special Topics: Biochemistry (BIOC 48100) may count as biology electives.

Two of the three biology electives must have a lab or discussion component (a fourth hour).

One of the three biology electives must be at level 3 or above.

Required courses outside the department

Chemistry

CHEM 12100

Principles of Chemistry

4

CHEM 12400

Experimental Chemistry I

2

CHEM 22100

Organic Chemistry I

3

CHEM 22200

Organic Chemistry II

3

CHEM 22500

Experimental Chemistry II

2

CHEM 23200

Quantitative Chemistry

3

Total, chemistry

17

Physics

Option 1

PHYS 10100 and PHYS 10200

   8

Option 2

PHYS 11700 and PHYS 11800

   8

Total, physics

   8

Mathematics

MATH 10800 or MATH 11100

     4

MATH 11200 or MATH 14500

     4

Total, mathematics

     8

Total, requirements offered from other departments

33-34

Electives

In any area to complete the 120 credits necessary for graduation

48-50

Summary

Biology courses

    37-38

Required courses outside the department

    33-34

Free electives

48-50

Total, B.S. in biology

   120

Minor in Biology

The biology minor program provides an option for nonmajors who wish to take a substantial number of biology courses and receive recognition for their studies.

Requirements for the Minor

Chemistry (CHEM 11100, CHEM 11200; or CHEM 12100, CHEM 22100)

     6

Introductory biology (BIOL 12100, BIOL 12200, or BIOL 11900, BIOL 12000)

     8

Level-2 or higher courses in biology (excluding BIOL 20000, BIOL 20500, BIOL 21000, BIOL 30000, BIOL 40000, BIOL 40100, and BIOL 40200).
Biochemistry I and II (BIOC 35300 and BIOC 35400) may count as biology electives


15-16

Total

29-30

Off-Campus Study in Marine Biology

Students can participate in our cooperative programs with the Duke University Marine Lab (North Carolina and Bermuda) or the Sea Education Association of Wood's Hole (with a variety of cruise tracks). For more information on these programs, see "National Affiliated Programs in Marine Biology" in the "International Programs" section.
National Affiliated Programs in Marine Biology