Advising for the Biology Major

Biology majors should plan to start the three-course introductory sequence during their first or second year. These courses need to be taken in order; however, majors can start the sequence either in the fall or the winter term. First and Second Year students enrolling in BIOL 130 are also required to enroll in the 1-unit BIOL 131 Biology Learning Teams course  Intermediate level biology courses require completion of BIOL 150, so students wishing to take intermediate-level courses in the second year should complete BIOL 150 during the first year.  Students with a strong background in chemistry who pass the on-line chemistry placement exam could begin with CHEM 116 in term I. 

Examples of possible schedules for First Year Biology majors:
Schedule Option A:
  • First Year: BIOL 130 & BIOL 131 (term I), BIOL 150, (term II),  BIOL 170 (term III)

  • Second Year: CHEM 116 (term I) or [CHEM 115 (term II) & CHEM 116 (term III)]
Schedule Option B:
  • First Year: CHEM 116 (term I), BIOL 130 & BIOL 131 (term II), BIOL 150 (term III)
  • Second Year: BIOL 170 (term I)
Schedule Option C:
  • First Year: No science (term I), BIOL 130 & BIOl 131 (term II), BIOL 150 (term III)
  • Second Year: BIOL 170 (term I), CHEM 115 (term II), CHEM 116 (term III)

Students who have earned AP or IB credit in biology are exempt from the BIOL 130 & BIOL 131 course, but not the other introductory courses.  Students also can take a departmental exemption exam for either BIOL 130 and/or BIOL 150 if they feel well qualified based on previous coursework.

Contact the program chair, Judith Humphries (, for more information.