2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog 
    Dec 04, 2023  
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog

Biology Major

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(67-71 credits)

Degree Map

Learning Outcomes  

The biology major trains students in the fundamental concepts and laboratory techniques of the biological sciences across a wide range of areas of emphasis; these, in turn, allow students to pursue a wide range of careers. Biology majors also receive practical training in field and laboratory biology, which also prepares them for academic, industrial, and governmental careers.

Biology Core (28 credits):

Electives (12-15 credits):

Select 12 credits from Any 3/400 Biology courses or CHEM 431, CHEM 431L, or CHEM 432


Select 9 credits from Any 3/400 Biology courses or CHEM 431, CHEM 431L, or CHEM 432; and complete the following:

  • BIO 231/231L
  • BIO 241/241L


Major Electives Specifications: Biology 415 is an acceptable elective only for departmental majors pursuing a science education curriculum.

Some courses have limits: Up to four credit hours of Biology 492 or two credits of BIO 490 may be used to help fill the elective requirement.

A portion of the 12 hours of elective credit required of Biology majors beyond the core curriculum may be composed of courses from cognate areas, subject to the approval of the student’s advisor and in agreement with the department chairpersons. This excludes cognate courses that are prerequisite for courses in the Department of Biology.

Cell and Molecular Biology Emphasis:

Cell Biology or Cellular Development and Cell and Tissue Culture, and Immunology, plus additional electives from the following:

Microbiology Emphasis:

Specific courses selected to fulfill the interests and employment opportunities of the student. A possible program might include Bacteriology, Immunology, Virology, Parasitology, and Recombinant DNA. Additional microbiology electives include:


A chemistry minor including 7 credit hours of biochemistry (Chemistry 431, 431L, 432) is strongly recommended.

Organismal and Conservation Biology Emphasis:

Advanced Ecology, Evolution, Plant Taxonomyor Vertebrate Zoology plus electives (8 hours) selected from the following:

Physiology Emphasis:

A possible program could include Vertebrate Physiology or Plant Physiology; Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy or Plant Anatomy; and additional electives from the following list:

Plant Biology Emphasis:

Specific courses are selected to fulfill the interests and employment opportunities of the students. A possible program selected from the following list might include Plant Taxonomy, (Plant Physiology, with laboratory, Plant Anatomy, Virology, and Cell and Tissue Culture with laboratory.


A chemistry minor including 7 credits of biochemistry (Chemistry 431, 431L, 432) is strongly recommended for some students.


A chemistry minor or other science minor is recommended to accompany a biology major. Students planning to enter medical school should select Biology 461—3 credits. It is recommended that these students consider for inclusion in their course work the following: a chemistry minor, a foreign language, humanities electives, and Psychology 101—3 credits.

Because some physical science courses are prerequisites for the required courses in the biology degree program, a biology major can complete a chemistry minor with a minimum of 7 additional credit hours.

Degree Map

The degree map is below

Fall 1st Year

Fall 3rd Year

Spring 3rd Year

Fall 4th Year

  • Major Elective | Credits/Units 3
  • Major Elective | Credits/Units 3
  • Foundational Studies:   UDIE | Credits/Units 3
  • Elective | Credits/Units 3
  • Elective | Credits/Units 2

    14 Credits

Spring 4th Year

   12 Credits

Program Description and Career Resources: https://www.indstate.edu/academics/undergraduate/majors/biology 

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