BS Biology Degree Requirements

Suggested plan of study

The suggested plan of study proposed here helps you balance the Biology major requirements over four academic years without taking summer classes. Please consult with your academic advisor for questions about taking courses in a different order than suggested here.

Bachelor of Science in Biology 2018-2019 degree requirements

FIRST YEAR-FALL HOURS   FIRST YEAR-SPRING HOURS
GT 1000 FRESHMAN SEMINAR* 1   ENGL 1102 ENGLISH COMPOSITION II 3
ENGL 1101 ENGLISH COMPOSITION I 3   MATH 1555 CALCULUS FOR LIFE SCIENCES (OR MATH 1552 INTEGRAL CALCULUS) 4
MATH 1551 DIFFERENTIAL CALCULUS 2   BIOL 1521 (OR 1520) INTRODUCTION TO ORGANISMAL BIOLOGY1 4
BIOL 1511 (OR 1510) BIOLOGICAL PRINCIPLES 4   CHEM 1212K CHEMICAL PRINCIPLES II 4
CHEM 1211K CHEMICAL PRINCIPLES I 4   TOTAL SEMESTER HOURS  15
TOTAL SEMESTER HOURS  14      
         
SECOND YEAR-FALL HOURS   SECOND YEAR-SPRING HOURS
BIOL 2335 ECOL, BIOL 2344 GENETICS, OR BIOL 2354 HONS. GENETICS2 3   BIOL 2344 GENETICS, BIOL 2335 OR BIOL 2337 HONORS ECOLOGY2 3
BIOL 2336 ECOL LAB, BIOL 2345 GEN LAB, OR BIOL 2355 HONS. GEN LAB2 1   BIOL 2345 GENETICS LAB, BIOL 2336, OR BIOL 2338 HONS. ECOLOGY LAB2 1
CHEM 2311 ORGANIC CHEMISTRY I 3   CHEM 2313 BIO-ORGANIC CHEMISTRY 3
MATH 1553 LINEAR ALGEBRA 2   CHEM 2380 SYNTHESIS LAB 2
COMPUTING REQUIREMENT OR HUM OR SS ELECTIVE 3   QUANTITATIVE BIOLOGY REQUIREMENT4 or COMPUTING REQUIREMENT 3
CONSTITUTION/HISTORY REQUIREMENT3 3   HUM or SS ELECTIVE 3
TOTAL SEMESTER HOURS  14 or 15   TOTAL SEMESTER HOURS  14 or 15
         
THIRD YEAR-FALL HOURS   THIRD YEAR-SPRING  HOURS
PHYS 2211 INTRODUCTORY PHYSICS I FOR LIFE SCIENCES 4   PHYS 2212 INTRODUCTORY PHYSICS II FOR LIFE SCIENCES 4
BIOL 3450 CELL & MOLECULAR BIOLOGY OR BIOL 3600 EVOLUTION5 3   BIOL 3450 CELL & MOLECULAR BIOLOGY OR BIOL 3600 EVOLUTION5 3
BIOLOGY ELECTIVE 3   BIOL 3451 CELL & MOLECULAR BIOLOGY LAB2 1
QUANTITATIVE BIOLOGY REQUIREMENT4 OR HUM OR SS ELECTIVE 3   BIOLOGY ELECTIVE 3
FREE ELECTIVE 3   WELLNESS 2
TOTAL SEMESTER HOURS  16   HUM or SS ELECTIVE 3
      TOTAL SEMESTER HOURS  15 or 16
         
FOURTH YEAR-FALL HOURS   FOURTH YEAR-SPRING  HOURS
BIOLOGY ELECTIVES 6   BIOLOGY ELECTIVE 9
FREE ELECTIVE 3   FREE ELECTIVE 5
HUM or SS ELECTIVE 3   HUM or SS ELECTIVES 3
SENIOR RESEARCH EXPERIENCE6 3   TOTAL SEMESTER HOURS 17
BIOL 4460 COMMUNICATING BIOLOGICAL RESEARCH 1      
TOTAL SEMESTER HOURS  16   TOTAL DEGREE REQUIREMENT HOURS 1227
       
*Not required for graduation, another free elective may be substituted      
Download a copy of the four year plan here.
 

Important notes

  • 1Four credit hours of Biology elective may be substituted for BIOL 1521 if a score of 5 was achieved on the AP Biology test. A maximum of 1 of these credits may be BIOL 4697 or BIOL 4699. Please discuss this option with your advisor. It is important to note that substituting for BIOL 1520/1521 often results in a student needing to take more than a single Biology elective class, because most Biology electives are only 3 credit hours.
  • 2Biology lab courses: Ecology, Genetics, and Cell & Molecular Biology each have an associated laboratory course. You must take two of these three labs, each of which must be taken concurrently with the corresponding lecture course: Ecology Lab (BIOL 2336/2338), Genetics Lab (BIOL 2345/2355), or Cell and Molecular Biology Lab (Biol 3451). Be aware that 3451 is typically only offered in the Spring semester; students who take 3450 in the Fall are eligible to take 3451 the following spring.
  • 3The Constitution Requirement is fulfilled by HIST 2111 or 1212 or POL 1101 or PUBP 3000 or INTA 1200.
  • 4The following courses meet the Quantitative Biology Course requirement (Note that MATH 1551 and MATH 1553 are pre-requisites for most of the Quantitative Requirement courses): BIOL 2400 Mathematical Models in Biology, BIOL 4150 Genomics, BIOL 4401 Experimental Design & Biostatistics (meets MCAT statistics requirement).
  • 5The prerequisite for BIOL 3600 is either BIOL 2335, BIOL 2337, BIOL 2344, or BIOL 2454.
  • 6The Senior Research Experience can be met with any of the following during the fourth year fall or spring semesters: BIOL 4590 Research Project Lab, BIOL 4690 Independent Research Project (requires at least one previous semester of BIOL 4699/2699), BIOL 4910 Honors Research Thesis (requires at least one previous semester of BIOL 4699/2699). More information about the Senior Research Experience and research for credit
  • 7A minimum of 39 hours of upper division coursework (3000-level or higher) is required for all Georgia Tech undergraduate degrees. The 39 hours of upper division coursework can fulfill any category of degree requirements, including free electives and "fall-through" courses.

Always refer to the Undergraduate Handbook specific to your catalog year (the year you entered the Biology major) for information, rules, and regulations specific to your Biology degree requirements.

  • Required Biology Core Courses
    • BIOL 1511/1510 Biological Principles
    • BIOL 1521/1520 Intro to Organismal Biology
    • BIOL 2335/2337 Honors or General Ecology
    • BIOL 2344/2354 Honors or General Genetics
    • BIOL 3450 Cell and Molecular Biology
    • BIOL 3600 Intro to Evolution
    • BIOL 4460 Communicating Biological Research
    • BIOL 2400/4150/4401 Quantitative Biology requirement (see note above)
    • BIOL 4590/4690/4919 Senior Research requirement (see note above)
    • Two of the following three labs, each of which must be taken concurrently with the corresponding lecture course:
      • BIOL 2336/2338 (Honors/General Ecology Lab)
      • BIOL 2345/2355 (Honors/General Genetics Lab)
      • BIOL 3451 (Cell and Molecular Biology Lab)
 
  • Required Non-Biology Science Courses
    • APPH 1040/1050 Wellness
    • CHEM 1211K and 1212K Chemical Principles 1 and II (or CHEM 1310, 1311, and 1312 General Chemistry and Inorganic Chemistry with Lab)
    • CHEM 2311 and 2313 Organic Chemistry I and Bio-Organic Chemistry (CHEM 2312 Organic Chemistry II may be taken in place of CHEM 2313)
    • CHEM 2380 Synthesis Lab
    • CS 1301/1315/1371 Computing requirement
    • MATH 1551, 1553, and 1552/1555 Math core requirement
    • PHYS 2211 and 2212 Intro Physics I and II
 
  • Biology Electives (21 hours)
  • Biology electives allow you to customize your biology degree to be specific to your biological area of interest using 21 hours of Biology elective credit. You can focus your Biology Electives in a particular concentration to earn a Biology Certificate. All Biology electives must be taken for a letter grade.
    • Depth electives: 12 "depth" credits must be courses with a “BIOL” prefix, excluding BIOL 4694-4699. Biology Elective courses that are cross-listed with other Schools are included in these 12 depth credits.
    • Breadth electives: up to 9 "breadth" credits can be selected from other BIOL 3XXX and higher courses, Biology experiential learning courses (BIOL 4695, 4697, 4699), and a list of approved courses offered in other Schools (see below).
  • More information about Biology electives can be found here.
 

More information on Biology courses:

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