The Biology Department

Major & Minor

This is general overview of the major and minor. For more information, please consult the current college catalogue, or contact the department.

The biology curriculum at Hillsdale College is aimed at providing a broad foundation in the biological sciences for subsequent specialized training in graduate or professional schools, for a career in teaching, or as a liberal arts background for a career in industry.

A minimum of 32 hours in biology courses at or above the 200 level is required for a major in biology. Courses required for all majors include:

  • Biology 201: Evolution & Biological Diversity
  • Biology 202: Molecular Genetics & Cellular Function
  • Biology 250: General Ecology
  • Biology 287: Biology Seminar
  • Biology 309: Genetics
  • Biology 340: Biostatistics
  • Biology 590: Junior Seminar
  • Biology 591: Junior Research
  • Biology 592: Junior Research
  • Biology 593: Senior Thesis or Biology 594: Biology Honors Thesis

In addition, Biology majors must take at least one course from each of the following three categories:

  • Advanced core in cellular biology/molecular biology/genetics
    • Biology 302: Developmental Biology
    • Biology 306: Plant Physiology
    • Biology 320: Advanced Cell Biology
    • Biology 360: Microbiology
    • Biology 430: Molecular Biology
  • Advanced core in organismal biology
    • Biology 301: Invertebrate Zoology
    • Biology 302: Developmental Biology
    • Biology 303: Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy
    • Biology 305: Plant Anatomy
    • Biology 315: Michigan Flora
    • Biology 316: Plant Taxonomy
    • Biology 370: Entomology
    • Biology 383: Mammalogy
    • Biology 390: Animal Parasitology
    • Biology 412: Mammalian Physiology
    • Biology 413: Human Gross Anatomy
  • Advanced core in evolution and ecology
    • Biology 311: Methods in Field Biology
    • Biology 317: Plant morphology
    • Biology 318: Historical Geology
    • Biology 345: Advanced Ecology
    • Biology 350: Conservation
    • Biology 364: Freshwater Biology
    • Biology 368: Marine biology
    • Biology 380: Animal Behavior
    • Biology 405: Population Genetics

Courses that appear more than once may only count toward one category. The successful completion of BIO 201 and 202 is recommended before students proceed in taking upper-level coursework.

Biology majors must register or receive credit for Mathematics 120 or 112/113 (previously MTH 213), and five additional cognate courses chosen from:

  • Chemistry 101: General Chemistry I
  • Chemistry 102: General Chemistry II
  • Chemistry 303: Organic Chemistry I
  • Chemistry 304: Organic Chemistry II
  • Physics 101: College Physics I
  • Physics 102: College Physics II
  • Physics 201: University Physics I
  • Phyiscs 202: University Physics II
  • Mathematics 105: Mathematics & Deductive Reasoning
  • Mathematics 220: Calculus II (previously MTH 214)
  • Computer Science 100: Introduction to Computers
  • Computer Science 101: Computer Programming I

Additionally, biology majors must participate as teaching assistants for one semester in biology laboratories.

During the junior and senior years, biology majors must design, conduct, write and publicly defend a research thesis (Biology 590-593/594). Senior biology majors must also complete a comprehensive biology examination and achieve at a level determined to be acceptable by the Department for graduation.

Minor

A minor in biology consists of Biology 201 and 202, plus additional hours in biology to comprise a minimum of 20 hours in the discipline.

For preprofessional programs in medicine, veterinary medicine, osteopathy, nursing and other science- and health-related disciplines, please click here.