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The Biology Department provides students with an understanding of the major principles of biology in a manner that encourages the development of critical-thinking skills. Students also receive hands-on experience with modern biological techniques and instrumentation. The major prepares students for professions in industry, government and teaching and for graduate training in research, medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, physical therapy, optometry and medical technology.

For students choosing a biology major, only the B.A. option is available. The biology major is available in the Day Program.

Major Checklists/Planning Guides

Major Requirements for Students Entering Program After Fall 2012


Biology Major Requirements:

  • BIOL 1710  Foundations of Biology I: Exploring the Unity and Diversity of Life
  • BIOL 1720  Foundations of Biology II: From Molecules to Bodies – Structure, Function and Regulation
  • BIOL 2710  Foundations of Biology III:  Evolution, Ecology and Behavior
  • BIOL 2720  Sophomore Seminar (2 cr Writing Intensive w/BIOL 4850)
  • BIOL 4850: Senior Seminar (2 credits) (Writing Intensive w/BIOL 2720)
  • BIOL 4602: Internship or BIOL 4912: Research (2 credits)

18 additional credits in Biology at the 3000 or 4000 level, including:

  • at least three 4-credit laboratory/field courses
  • at least 4 credits at the 4000 level

Required supporting courses:

  • CHEM 1110: General Chemistry I
  • CHEM 1120: General Chemistry II
  • CHEM 2010: Organic Chemistry I
  • Statistics (PSYC 2050, MATH 1100, ECON 2200, or ECON 2250)

Recommended courses:

  • CHEM 2020: Organic Chemistry II
  • CHEM 4400: Biochemistry
  • MATH 1130: Calculus I
  • PHYS 1110,1120: Introductory Physics I, II

Biology majors satisfy the Writing Requirement for Majors by completing BIOL 2720 Sophomore Seminar and BIOL 4850W Senior Seminar. 

They complete the Liberal Arts and Sciences Core Writing Requirement with three other writing-intensive courses (CORE 100W and 399W, and any other writing-intensive course in this or another department).


If you entered St. Catherine as a first year student, had a First-Year Advisor, and indicated an interest in Biology, you were probably assigned a major advisor in the Biology Department at the end of your first year.

If you are a sophomore, junior or senior intending to major in Biology, you should have a Biology faculty member as your major advisor.

You may request an advisor at any time. You’ll need to fill out a Major/Advisor online form so that your records are directed to your new advisor.


If you have a faculty member in mind, you may ask them directly, then fill out the form. If you do not have a particular faculty member in mind, but would like to have an advisor in the Biology Department, fill out the form (leaving the advisor line blank), and bring the form to the Department Chair who will assign you an advisor. You’ll receive the white copy of the form as notification of your new advisor.

Declaring Your Major

You may declare your major any time using the Major/Advisor online form. We recommend that you declare your major before the end of your sophomore year.

Remember that declaring your major and intent to graduate are two different forms. The intent to graduate form is available at the Office of the Registrar.

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