Biology Major

The Department of Biology offers a program that allows the student to obtain a thorough preparation for graduate or professional school, to meet state requirements for a teaching credential in the life sciences, to acquire the laboratory training necessary for entry into advanced programs in biotechnology, or to supplement other major studies with a broad background in biology.

Students entering the University of San Diego and/or declaring a major during 2018-2019, should follow information contained in the printed course catalog (also known as the "catalog of record") published on May 1, 2018. Access the catalog of record at http://catalogs.sandiego.edu.

The Biology Major

Preparation for the Major

BIOL 240
240L
Bioenergetics and Systems
and Bioenergetics and Systems Laboratory
4
BIOL 242
242L
Genomes and Evolution
and Genomes and Evolution Laboratory
4
CHEM 151
151L
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry I Laboratory
4
CHEM 152
152L
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry II Laboratory
4
CHEM 301
301L
Organic Chemistry I
and Organic Chemistry I Laboratory
4
MATH 130Survey of Calculus3-4
or  MATH 150 Calculus I
or  MATH 151 Calculus II
PHYS 136
136L
General Physics I
and General Physics I Lab
4
PHYS 137
137L
General Physics II
and General Physics II Lab
4
Total Units31-32

Major Requirements

A minimum of 28 Upper-Division Units in biology is required. These must include:

Required Courses
BIOL 300Genetics3
BIOL 305Ecology3
BIOL 309Research Methods2
BIOL 495Biology Capstone Seminar 12
Research Experience
Select one of the following:3-4
Research Project
Science in the Public Domain
Research 2
Research Internship 2
Upper Division Units14
Total Units27-28

Students may choose elective courses according to their interests for the remainder of their upper-division units, but these must include a minimum of three laboratory classes (the Research Experience does not count as one of the three). At least 16 of the upper-division units for the major must be completed at USD.

Recommended Program of Study, Biology

Freshman Year
Semester IUnits
Preceptorial 3
Select one of the following:4
Bioenergetics and Systems 
Genomes and Evolution 
Select one of the following:3-4
General Chemistry I 
or Survey of Calculus
Calculus I
 
CC or electives3-4
Semester IIHours
Select one of the following:4
Bioenergetics and Systems 
Genomes and Evolution 
Select one of the following:3-4
General Chemistry II 
or Survey of Calculus
Calculus I
 
CC or electives3-6
Sophomore Year
Semester IHours
Select one or two of the following:3
Genetics 
Ecology 
Research Methods 
Select one of the following:4
General Chemistry I 
Organic Chemistry I 
CC or electives6-9
Semester IIHours
Select two of the following:5-6
Genetics 
Ecology 
Research Methods 
CHEM 152
152L
General Chemistry II4
CC or electives3-6
Junior Year
Semester IHours
BIOL electives4-8
PHYS 136
136L
General Physics I4
CC or electives3-6
Semester IIHours
BIOL electives4-8
PHYS 137
137L
General Physics II4
CC or electives3-6
Senior Year
Semester IHours
Select one or both of the following:2-8
Biology Capstone Seminar 
BIOL electives
 
CC or electives3-6
Semester IIHours
Select one or both of the following:2-8
Biology Capstone Seminar 
BIOL electives
 
CC or electives3-6

Recommended Program of Study: Integrated Teacher Preparation Program (ITPP) Pathway 

The Integrated Teacher Preparation Program (ITPP) provides paths to 4-year science and math degrees that include a teaching credential and preparation for the California Subject Examination for Teachers (CSET). Students who are interested in middle or secondary education (grades 6-12) in California may earn a degree in biology while simultaneously completing requirements for a teaching credential. The degree integrates content knowledge and laboratory practices in the discipline, evidence-based teaching/learning theories, teaching performance expectations, and pre-student teaching clinical practice while satisfying baccalaureate degree requirements and CTC single subject credential program standards. There is some flexibility to meet individual needs. Students are encouraged to consult the ITPP website (http://www.sandiego.edu/itpp) and advisors (itpp@sandiego.edu) to ensure that their needs and interests will be met.

In addition to all courses for the biology major, students completing the ITPP pathway must also take the following:

EOSC 110Introduction to Geosciences4
EDUC 332PCurriculum and Methods of Teaching in Today's Global Secondary Classrooms3
EDUC 334PMethods of Teaching Literacy in Secondary Schools in a Global Society3
EDUC 337PFoundations in Curriculum and Instruction Theory: Secondary Praxis in Historical Context3
EDUC 381CMulticultural and Philosophical Foundations in a Global Society3
EDUC 382Psychological Foundations of Education in a Diverse Society3
EDUC 384CMethods of Teaching English Language and Academic Development in Crosscultural Contexts3
EDUC 491PStudent Teaching for the Single Subject Credential9
EDUC 491SStudent Teaching Seminar for the Single Subject Credential3
EDSP 389PHealthy Environments and Inclusive Education in a Global Society3
Total Units37

The following paradigm is included as a guide only, and should not be interpreted in a rigid sense.  Elective courses may be taken at any time as long as the course prerequisites have been satisfied. 

Freshman Year
Semester IUnits
Select one of the following:4
Bioenergetics and Systems 
Genomes and Evolution 
Select one of the following:4
General Chemistry I 
CC or Electives6-9
Semester IIHours
Select one of the following:4
Bioenergetics and Systems 
Genomes and Evolution 
Select one of the following:4
General Chemistry II 
CC or Electives6-9
Semester III (Summer)Hours
EOSC 110Introduction to Geosciences4
or MATH 130
150
Survey of Calculus
Calculus I
3-4
Sophomore Year
Semester IHours
Select one of the following:3-4
Genetics 
Ecology 
Organic Chemistry I 
EDUC 381CMulticultural and Philosophical Foundations in a Global Society3
CC or Electives6-9
Semester IIHours
Select one of the following:3
Genetics 
Ecology 
EDUC 382Psychological Foundations of Education in a Diverse Society3
CC or Electives6-9
Semester III (Summer)Hours
EDSP 389PHealthy Environments and Inclusive Education in a Global Society3
CC or Electives3
Junior Year
Semester IHours
BIOL electives4-8
PHYS 136
136L
General Physics I4
CC or Electives3-6
Semester IIHours
BIOL electives4-8
PHYS 137
137L
General Physics II4
EDUC 332PCurriculum and Methods of Teaching in Today's Global Secondary Classrooms3
EDUC 384CMethods of Teaching English Language and Academic Development in Crosscultural Contexts3
CC or Electives3-6
Semester III (Summer)Hours
CC or Electives6
Senior Year
Semester IHours
EDUC 334PMethods of Teaching Literacy in Secondary Schools in a Global Society3
EDUC 491PStudent Teaching for the Single Subject Credential9
EDUC 491SStudent Teaching Seminar for the Single Subject Credential3
Semester IIHours
Select one or both of the following:2-8
Biology Capstone Seminar 
BIOL electives
 
CC or Electives6-8