Biology - BS

Program Contact: Dr. David Merwine, program director, assistant professor of biology

If you want to do more than just live life, become a biologist and study it.  

Biologists have exciting and rewarding careers in areas such as medicine, biotechnology, and environmental conservation and management. Biologists study living things to understand how they function, survive, and evolve. They may study bacteria and viruses that threaten human health or larger organisms such as red-spotted newts or brown bears. Whatever the scale, biological research increases our understanding of health and wellness and the threats to our environment. 

You will learn how life works by asking questions, making observations, and evaluating evidence. Besides lectures, your classes will include hands-on activities in the laboratory and outdoors. Because of our location, you will have unique outdoor learning opportunities. We have an ongoing research project with our environmental studies program in the Allegheny National Forest.   

Some of your college credits may come from internships: You can shadow local doctors or conduct undergraduate research with a faculty mentor.  

With your biology degree you could become a physician or a veterinarian. A research biologist, a biotechnology patent attorney or a high school science teacher. These are just a few of the possibilities. 

Future doctors may streamline their acceptance into medical school via our Freshman Guarantee at the University of Pittsburgh Medical School.  Future doctors, dentists, and optometrists may be able save a year of study and tuition by enrolling in our special 3 + 4 programs with Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, Pitt's Dental School, or the Pennsylvania College of Optometry.  

Watch what some of our biology students do in the program. Take a look at our Biology program website.

This just in:

  • Matt Muroski '14 is a wastewater treatment plant operator trainee in Olean, NY
  • Lindsay Shine '14 is a resource conservationist for the McKean County Conservation District in Smethport, PA
  • Wray Woelfel '13 is a graduate student in the doctor of optometry program in Salus University in Philadelphia
  • Paul Woods, a biology major from Port Allegany, PA was accepted into the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • Justine Maley '09-'11 is a doctoral student in the pharmacy program at Wilkes University in Wilkes-Barre, PA

What you can do with a degree in  Biology. Suggested 4-year plan of study.


Course Requirements for the Major

              Total Credits for Major: 57-60

Additional Information:

If you're interested in applying to schools of chiropractic, dentistry/dental medicine, medicine, optometry, podiatry, and veterinary medicine, you need to complete one year of Organic Chemistry with labs (CHEM 0206, 0207, 0208, and 0209); one year of General Physics with labs (PHYS 0101 and 0102 or 0201, 0202, 0203, and 0204); and one semester of Calculus (Math 0140).

 For more information about the biology program, check out our homepage.


Yaich Lauren


Associate Professor of Biology


106 Fisher Hall

Mulcahy Mary


Division Chair, Associate Professor of Biology


203F Fisher Hall

Merwine David


Director of Biology program, Associate Professor of Biology


203D Fisher Hall

Singh Om


Associate Professor of Biology


203C Fisher Hall

James, Orin


Instructor of Biology


203J Fisher Hall

Piechnik, Denise


Assistant Professor of Biology


211B Swarts Hall