Bachelor of Science in Biology

Disclaimer: This is a guide to aid in answering questions about degree requirements. The VCU Undergraduate Bulletin is the official source of information for degree requirements and can differ slightly from year to year. Students should follow the bulletin for the year they began at VCU.  The information found here should not be used as a replacement for academic advising.

Continue scrolling to view information on the 2014-2015 Bulletin.

The information below refers to the 2015-2016 Bulletin for the B.S. in Biology.

Click here for the current bulletin for the B.S. in Biology.

Biology Core

  • The following courses must be taken by biology majors:
  • BIOL 151 Introduction to Biological Science I (3 credits)
  • BIOZ 151 Introduction to Biological Science Laboratory I (1 credit)
  • BIOL152 Introduction to Biological Science II (3 credits)
  • BIOZ 152 Introduction to Biological Science Laboratory II (1 credit)
  • BIOL 200 Quantitative Biology (3 credits)
  • BIOL 300 Cell and Molecular Biology (equivalent to BIOL 218 Cell Biology) (3 credits)
  • BIOL 310 Genetics (3 credits)
  • BIOL 317 Ecology (3 credits)
  • BIOL 318 Evolution (3 credits)

A “C” grade or better is required in BIOL 151, 152, BIOZ 151, 152, BIOL 200, 300, 310, 317 and 318 to successfully complete the B.S. in Biology.

Senior Capstone requirement (choose one)

  • BIOL 475 Biology Capstone Seminar
  • BIOZ 476 Biology Capstone Laboratory
  • BIOL 477 Biology Capstone Experience

The following courses qualify as a capstone experience if taken as a co-requisite with BIOL 477:

  • BIOL 492 Independent Study
  • BIOL 493 Biology Internship
  • BIOL 495 Research and Thesis
  • BIOL 497 Ecological Service Learning
  • Others as approved by the department

Laboratory requirement
At least five laboratory courses must be taken from all biology
courses; one of these may be BIOL 492 Independent Study or BIOL 495 Research and Thesis. Registration in BIOL 492 or 495 must be for a minimum of two credit hours in order to count as one of the six
required laboratory courses. To fulfill the five laboratory courses requirement, students must complete BIOZ 151 and BIOZ 152 and a minimum of three upper-level labs.

Biology electives
Elective Biology courses at the 300 – 500 levels must be taken to achieve at least 40 total credits in biology. See the VCU Courses database for a list of biology courses. (Note: Biology Laboratory courses require a separate search.) CHEM 403 and LFSC 301 can also be counted towards the major.

 

The information below refers to the 2014-2015 Bulletin for the B.S. in Biology.

Information on previous years' bulletins, including 2014-15, can be found in the VCU Scholars Compass.  Students should follow the bulletin for the year in which they were admitted to VCU.

Biology Core
The following courses must be taken by biology majors:

  • BIOL 151 Introduction to Biological Science I (3 credits)
  • BIOZ 151 Introduction to Biological Science Laboratory I (1 credit)
  • BIOL152 Introduction to Biological Science II (3 credits)
  • BIOZ 152 Introduction to Biological Science Laboratory II (1 credit)
  • BIOL 218 Cell Biology (now BIOL 300 Cell and Molecular Biology) (3 credits)
  • BIOL 310 Genetics (3 credits)
  • BIOL 317 Ecology (3 credits)

A “C” grade or better is required in BIOL 151, 152, BIOZ 151, 152, BIOL 218, 310 and 317 for enrollment in all courses for which they are prerequisites and to successfully complete the B.S. in Biology.

Organismal biology
One course from the animal group and one from the plant group.  At least one of the courses selected must include a laboratory.  For those courses in which the laboratory is a separate section from the lecture, the laboratory may be taken concurrently with or
subsequent to the lecture.

Animal group

  • BIOL 301 Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy (5 credits, lab included)
  • BIOL 302 Embryology (5 credits, lab included, not currently being offered)
  • BIOL 309 Entomology (4 credits, lab included) – usually Fall
  • semester only.
  • BIOL 312 Invertebrate Zoology (3 credits, lab is separate and
  • optional) and BIOZ 312 Invertebrate Zoology lab (1 credit, optional)
  • BIOL 313 Vertebrate Natural History (3 credits, lab is separate and
  • optional) and BIOZ 313 Vertebrate Natural History lab (1 credit,
  • optional)
  • BIOL 314 Animal Reproduction (3 credits, no lab available)
  • BIOL 391 Topics: see Biology Undergraduate Advising Blackboard page for more information
  • BIOL 416 Ornithology (3 credits, lab is separate and optional) and BIOZ 416 Ornithology lab (1 credit, optional) – both are usually Spring semester only.
  • BIOL 417 Mammology (4 credits, lab included, not currently being offered)
  • BIOL 435 Herpetology (3 credits, no lab, course offering variable)
  • BIOL 445 Neurobiology and Behavior (4 credits, lab included)-
  • usually Spring semester only.
  • BIOL 503 Fish Biology (4 credits, lab included, not currently being offered)
  • BIOL 491 Topics in Biology (as approved, see Biology
  • Undergraduate Advising Blackboard page for more information)

Plant group

  • BIOL 320 Biology of the Seed Plant (4 credits, lab included)
  • BIOL 321 Plant Development (3 credits, lab is separate and optional) and BIOZ 321 Plant Development lab (2 credits, optional)
  • BIOL 322 Economic Botany (3 credits, no lab available)
  • BIOL 323 Plant Physiology (3 credits, no lab available)
  • BIOL 333 Evolution of Angiosperms (3 credits, no lab available)
  • BIOL 391 Topics: see Biology Undergraduate Advising Blackboard page for more information
  • BIOL 422 Forest Ecology (4 credits, lab included)
  • BIOL 425 Field Botany (3 credits, lab included)
  • BIOL 491 Topics in Biology (as approved, see Biology
  • Undergraduate Advising Blackboard page for more information)

Senior Capstone requirement (choose one)

  • BIOL 475 Biology Capstone Seminar
  • BIOZ 476 Biology Capstone Laboratory
  • BIOL 477 Biology Capstone Experience

The following courses qualify as a capstone experience if taken as a co-requisite with BIOL 477:

  • BIOL 492 Independent Study
  • BIOL 493 Biology Internship
  • BIOL 495 Research and Thesis
  • BIOL 497 Ecological Service Learning
  • Others as approved by the department

Laboratory requirement
At least six laboratory courses must be taken from all biology
courses; one of these may be BIOL 492 Independent Study or BIOL 495 Research and Thesis. Registration in BIOL 492 or 495 must be for a minimum of two credit hours in order to count as one of the six
required laboratory courses. BIOZ 151, BIOZ 152 and the
organismal lab also count towards this requirement.

Biology electives
Elective Biology courses at the 300 – 500 levels must be taken to achieve at least 40 total credits in biology. See the VCU Courses database for a list of biology courses. (Note: Biology Laboratory courses require a separate search.) CHEM 403 and LFSC 301 can also be counted towards the major.