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Biology (BI)
Bachelor of Science
R. Scot Duncan, Andrew Gannon, Megan Gibbons, Pamela Hanson,
Jason Heaton, Leo Pezzementi, H. Wayne Shew, Melanie Styers, Peter Van Zandt
Biology, the study of life from molecules to ecosystems, is one of the
most interesting and important areas of modern scientific inquiry, with
profound implications for society. Breakthroughs in basic research in
biology are leading to practical applications in medicine, agriculture, and
environmental management. The biology department of Birmingham-
Southern College offers students the opportunity to participate in the
excitement of biology as part of a learning community of faculty and
students through investigative study in the classroom, laboratory, field,
and library; through collaborative undergraduate research projects; and
through formal and informal consultation, advising, and discussions. By
participating in these activities, students actively learn both the process and
content of modern biological science.
The introductory four-course sequence of the biology major introduces
students to some of the major concepts and approaches of biology:
biological organization and diversity, comparative structure-function
relationships, cell structure and function, energetics and metabolism,
classical and molecular genetics, evolution, and ecology. Upper-level
elective courses allow students to investigate more thoroughly various facets
of biological science. All students will undertake a two-term undergraduate
research project as a capstone experience for their studies.
A biology major will also prepare students for additional coursework
and research in graduate school in areas as diverse as ecology, molecular
biology, physiology, environmental studies, and conservation biology. In
addition the program provides the preparation needed for application to
medical and dental schools, and also provides pre-professional training for
students interested in various health-related fields (e.g., physical therapy,
and physician or surgical assistant’s programs). Biology majors may enter
public school teaching with the appropriate courses in education required
for certification.
An interdisciplinary major in biology and psychology is available, as
are pre-professional programs in biology/environmental studies, biology/
pre-nursing, and biology-psychology/pre-nursing (see the Interdisciplinary
Majors section of this catalog). Courses in biology can be combined with
courses in other disciplines for an interdisciplinary or individualized major
to meet specialized career goals.
Additional course requirements may be needed for entrance into
medical, dental or other professional programs. Students should consult
with the Health Professions Program Advisor to ensure that they complete
all of the requirements needed for acceptance into the professional
program of interest.