Biology Major,
Bachelor of Arts

Department of Biology

Arriving at your destination

A Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in biology at FMU biology requires 120 credit hours, including the satisfactory completion of the following courses. This curriculum can be tailored to fit a variety of career goals within the overall framework of the major.

General Education Requirements

Communications (9 hours)

Social Sciences (9 hours)

  • POLI 101: U.S. Government OR POLI 103: Introduction to Political Science (3)
  • Two elective courses in Anthropology (ANTH), Economics (ECON), Geography (GEOG), Political Science (POLI), or Sociology (SOCI). (3)
    • Honors (HNRS) courses 250-259 will also fulfill this requirement.

Humanities (12 hours)

  • Literature (ENGL) (3)
  • History (HIST) (3)
  • Fine Art Appreciation (ART 101, MUSI 101, or THEA 101) (3)
  • Two elective courses in Art (ART), Literature (ENGL), History (HIST), Music (MUSI), Theater (THEA), or Philosophy & Religious Studies (PRS) or AAAS 200: Introduction to African American Studies or GNDR 200: Gender Studies (3)
    • Honors (HNRS) courses 260-269 will also fulfill this requirement.

Foreign Language (12 hours)

  • Four course series in at least one foreign language.
    • French (FNCH 101, 102, 201, and 202)
    • German (GERM 101, 102, 201, and 202)
    • Spanish (SPAN 101, 102, 201, and 202)

Mathematics (6 hours)

  • A minimum of 6 hours of mathematics courses MATH 111 or higher.
    • Most biology majors take:

Natural Sciences (12 hours)

  • Biology majors fulfill this General Education requirement automatically.
  • A minimum of 12 hours of science courses with laboratories.
    • Biology (BIOL) or Environmental Science (ENVR) (4)
    • Chemistry (CHEM), Physics (PHYS), or Physical Science (PSCI) (4)
    • Astronomy (ASTR), Biology (BIOL), Chemistry (CHEM), Environmental Science (ENVR), Physics (PHYS), Physical Science (PSCI), Psychology (PSYC 206/216), or
      • Honors (HNRS) courses 280-289 will also fulfill this requirement.

Major Requirements

Biology Core (9 hours)

  • One course from Introductory Group I: (4)
    • BIOL 105/BIOL 115L: Biological Sciences I
      • BIOL 103 and BIOL 104 may substitute for BIOL 105/115L with permission from the Department.
    • BIOL 107: Integrated Biological Concepts I
  • One course from Introductory Group II: (4)
  • BIOL 499: Biology Capstone Seminar (1)

Biology Blocks (16 hours)

  • One course from the Cellular and Molecular Biology Block: (4)
  • One course in the Genetics and Evolution Block: (4)

Biology Electives (11 hours)

  • Three additional (BIOL) courses are needed to bring the total biology credits to 36 hours.
    • Courses must be 200-level or above.
    • Internship courses (BIOL 490, 494, and 498) do not fulfill the biology elective requirements for the biology major. 

Chemistry (12 hours)

Physics (8 hours)


Minor/Collateral Requirements

FMU students are required to complete either a minor or two collaterals in addition to their major for graduation.

  • A minor in another discipline requires at least 18 hours of coursework in that discipline.
    • Some restrictions may apply, please check minor requirements for other disciplines.
    • Many biology students choose to take 2 more chemistry courses to complete the Chemistry Minor.
  • Collaterals in other disciplines require 12 hours of coursework in those disciplines.
    • Some restrictions may apply, please check collateral requirements in other disciplines.
    • Biology students earn a Chemistry Collateral automatically when they complete the major requirements. 

Additional Information

  • Additional elective courses in any discipline may be needed to reach the total 120 hours required for graduation.
    • Many biology students choose to earn credit from research projects or internships. Talk to your advisor for more information.
    • When choosing electives, students should remember that certain career paths may seek knowledge that are not strictly required for the biology major.
      • Examples: statistics, computer science, GIS skills, etc.
  • To advance to a higher biology course, a student must earn a grade of C or higher in each prerequisite biology course.