2018-2019 Undergraduate Course Catalog 
    Jul 19, 2024  
2018-2019 Undergraduate Course Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Biology, BA

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Deborah Herholtz, Academic Support Coordinator
114 Life Sciences Complex
herholtz@syr.edu, 315-443-9139.


David M. Althoff, Katie Becklin, Carlos Castañeda, Samuel H.P. Chan, Heather Coleman, Steve Dorus, Scott E. Erdman, Thomas P. Fondy, Douglas A. Frank, Jason D. Fridley, Jannice Friedman, Anthony Garza, Paul Gold, Sarah Hall, James A. Hewett, Sandra J. Hewett, Robin Jones, Donna Korol, George Langford, Katharine Lewis, Jessica MacDonald, Eleanor Maine, Susan Parks, Melissa Pepling, Scott Pitnick, Ramesh Raina, Surabhi Raina, Mark Ritchie, Kari A. Segraves, Robert Silver, Melody Troeger Sweet, Joseph T. Tupper, Roy Welch, Michele Wheatly, Jason R. Wiles

Students majoring in biology establish a general background in the discipline through a series of first-year/sophomore-level core courses that preview the major sub-disciplines of biology. This introductory program is followed by courses that allow the student to focus on more advanced material.

The major in biology leads to either the B.A. or the B.S. degree. The B.S. degree is intended for students interested in graduate study in biological science or the health professions (medicine, dentistry, or veterinary medicine). In addition to biology requirements, students pursuing the B.S. degree in biology take general and organic chemistry, and mathematics through calculus. Students are also encouraged to gain practical experience and academic credit through the University Honors Program, the Community Internship Program, or departmental research. Students may also receive a B.S. in biology with emphasis on environmental sciences.

The B.A. degree is intended for students who wish to pursue technical or science-related careers that do not require a graduate or professional degree, or careers outside of biology in which a background in science may be useful, such as science writing, business, or law. Although the first-year/sophomore-level core biology course requirements for the B.A. and the B.S. degrees are similar, there are key differences for the B.A. in the first-year courses required and fewer additional courses in chemistry and mathematics are required relative to the B.S.

Student Learning Outcomes

1. Be able to recognize and distinguish theories, concepts and principles from the major sub-fields of biology

2. Be able to distinguish more specific and advanced concepts in selected areas of biology

3. Apply skills in the nature and practice of science

4. Utilize written communication skills relevant to biological sciences

5. Apply quantitative methods to solve problems in the biological sciences

Major Requirements

B.A. Degree Requirements (43-45 credits)

To declare the B.A. major in Biology, students must:

Earn a C+ or better in a General Biology course (BIO 121  or BIO 123   & BIO 124   or accepted AP);

- AND -

Either earn a C+ in one of the four 300-level core courses (BIO 305  , BIO 326  , BIO 327  , BIO 345  ) or have a 3.0 cumulative GPA any time after the first semester.

Core Curriculum

Students in the B.A. degree program complete the first-year/sophomore core curriculum:

Non Biology Courses (11-13 credits)

Two semesters General Chemistry (8 credits) 


Students with 8 credits of Advanced Placement

Students with 8 credits of Advanced Placement may omit the introductory Biology courses BIO 121  AND BIO 123 /BIO 124 . Also, students may substitute any 4 credit upper division laboratory course for BIO 123 /BIO 124  to fulfill the degree, however when doing so the course substituting cannot also count towards the upper division requirements.

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