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    Columbia Campus
  Jul 14, 2024
2010-2011 Undergraduate Studies Bulletin (Frozen) 
2010-2011 Undergraduate Studies Bulletin (Frozen) [Archived Catalog]

Biological Sciences, B.S.

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Learning Outcomes Department of Biological Sciences 
Curriculum College of Arts and Sciences 

Learning Outcomes

  • Students will demonstrate a solid base of knowledge in Biology. Subjects such as cell and molecular biology, genetics, ecology and evolution, plant biology, and physiology are all crucial subject areas that will be mastered.
  • Students will analyze qualitative and quantitative data, assess validity of work and identify gaps in knowledge, and evaluate the results of analyses and experiments and decide on next steps.
  • Students will identify assumptions, create and evaluate hypotheses, and design relevant experiments.
  • Students will be trained to locate sources of information and to evaluate the quality of the information needed to make decisions. Students will be trained to critically read and discuss primary literature and evaluate its validity (on an appropriate level).
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to learn independently and then share that knowledge with others as well as to work collaboratively.


Basic Degree Requirements for Majors in Curricula Section II (128 Hours)

  1. General Education Requirements
  2. Major
  3. Cognate or Minor Requirements
  4. Electives

1. General Education Requirements - Curricula II


Group I–Competency (12-21 Hours)

Students are encouraged to demonstrate the level of accomplishment represented by Group I courses by means of advanced placement examinations. See the section on advanced placement under “Admissions Policies and Procedures .”


Writing (6 Hours)

Must be passed with grade of C or better.


Foreign Languages (0-9 Hours)

Demonstration of proficiency in one foreign language equivalent to the minimal passing grade on the exit examination in the 122 course is required for all baccalaureate degrees.

It is strongly recommended that students continuing the study of a foreign language begin college-level study of that language in their first semester and continue in that language until their particular foreign language requirement is completed.


History (6 Hours)

  • Two courses in History (HIST), at the 100 level, at least one non-U.S. history.


Group II–Quantitative (A Minimum of 12 Hours)


Group III–Humanities (6 Hours)

Each student must pass at least 6 additional hours of study in the humanities; at least one course must be in fine arts.

Fine Arts

A course or courses dealing with the study and/or practice of the visual and performing arts. Students may take courses in art studio, art design, art history and appreciation, film, media arts, music history and appreciation, music theory and performance, theatre history and appreciation, acting, stagecraft, theatre design, and dance to fulfill this requirement. Courses in speech (SPCH) do NOT satisfy the fine arts requirement. Theatre production laboratories (THEA 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, 219, 220, 221), one-hour credits for participation in music organizations (band, chorus, orchestra), and MART 302 do NOT apply to the fine arts requirement or to the humanities requirement.


African American Studies (AFRO)
Classical Studies (CLAS) 230 
English (ENGL) 280 or higher, excluding 450, 460, 461, 462, and 463
Foreign Language 201 or higher
History (HIST) 201 or higher
Philosophy (PHIL) excluding 110, 111, and 511
Religious Studies (RELG)
Women and Gender Studies (WGST) 111 


Group IV–Social Sciences (6 Hours)

Complete 6 hours from the following:

Anthropology (ANTH)
Criminology and Criminal Justice (CRJU)
Economics (ECON)
Geography (GEOG)
Political Science (POLI)
Psychology (PSYC)
excluding 227, 594, and 599
Sociology (SOCY) excluding 220
Women and Gender Studies (WGST) 112  only

 Group V–Laboratory Science (8 Hours)

Complete two 4-credit hour laboratory science courses from the following:

Astronomy (ASTR) 111,111A, 211, 211A 
Biology (BIOL) 1011, 1021, 1102, 2002, 200L2, 2702, 270L2, 2432, 243L2, 2442, 244L2
Chemistry (CHEM) 1023, 1053, 105L3, 1063, and 106L3, 111 , 112 
Environmental Studies (ENVR) 200 
Geological sciences (GEOL) 101 , 102 , 103 , 105
Marine science (MSCI) 210 , 210L , 215 , 215L 
Physics (PHYS) 1514, 151L4, 1534, 153L4, 1554, 155L4, 201 , 201L , 202 , 202L; or 211, 211L , 212 , 212L 

1 Biology and Pre-Med majors only
2 Non- Biology majors only
3 Mathematics and Statistics majors only
4 Non-Physics majors only

2. Major

All biological sciences majors must earn at least a C in BIOL 101 and 102 to progress in the major.

Major Pre-requisites

The following courses fulfill some of the general education requirements and some cognates and must be completed for a major in biology.

A minimum grade of C in all biology courses is required of all biological sciences majors.

Major Requirements (28 hours)


At least three courses applied toward the major must have an associated laboratory. No more than three credits of 398/399 may be applied toward the major. Two of 301, 302, or 303 must be completed to advance to 400-600 level courses. At least two courses must be at the 500 level or above.

Progression Requirement

Biological sciences majors may enroll in a biological sciences major course a maximum of twice to earn the required grade of C or higher. For the purposes of this standard of progression, withdrawal with a W does not constitute enrollment.

Transfer Requirement

Any student applying for transfer to the biological sciences major from other programs within the University, or from other accredited colleges and universities, is required to have a minimum overall grade point average of 2.50 on a 4.00 scale.

3. Cognate or Minor Requirements (12-18 Hours) for B.S. Degrees - Curricula II


The cognate is intended to support the course work in the major. Cognate courses may all be in one outside department or in several departments, depending on the individual interests and requirements of the student as judged by the student’s academic advisor. A cognate differs from a minor in that the courses must be above sophomore level and may be distributed over more than one subject area. For degrees in Curricula Section II, grades of D are acceptable for completion of the cognate requirement. Courses applied toward general education requirements cannot be counted toward the cognate.

Courses offered by departments in the College of Arts and Sciences that are acceptable for cognate credit for the Bachelor of Science (Curricula Section II) are outlined below; for cognate course offerings in other departments or colleges, consult the appropriate sections of this bulletin. In general, 399 courses are not used for fulfilling the cognate requirement. Some major programs have specific cognate requirements.

Courses Offered by Departments in the College of Arts and Sciences Acceptable for Cognate Credit 

It should be emphasized that the cognate is not a second set of elective courses to be chosen at random by the student. The cognate must be approved by the advisor as being related to the major field of study.


In place of the cognate a student in the College of Arts and Sciences may choose a minor consisting of at least 18 credit hours of prescribed courses. The subject area of the minor may be related to the major. Students pursuing interdisciplinary minors who wish to use courses in their major department for minor credit must petition the College Committee on Scholastic Standards and Petitions for permission to do so. The minor is intended to develop a coherent basic preparation in a second area of study. It differs from the cognate inasmuch as the courses must be concentrated in one area and must follow a structured sequence. Interdisciplinary minors can be designed with the approval of the dean. Courses applied toward general education requirements cannot be counted toward the minor. No course may satisfy both major and minor requirements. All minor courses must be passed with a grade of C or higher. At least half of the courses in the minor must be completed in residence at the University.

A list of minor programs of study can be found at Programs of Study A-Z.

4. Electives for B.S. Degrees - Curricula II

No courses of a remedial, developmental, skill-acquiring, vocational nature or physical education courses involving substantial content in pedagogy may apply towards the elective requirement. The College of Arts and Sciences allows the use of the Pass-Fail option on elective courses. Further clarification of inapplicable courses can be obtained from the College of Arts and Sciences.


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