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Biology/Biological Sciences, General

Program Description

Just the Facts

Biology/Biological Sciences, General. A general program of biology at the introductory, basic level or a program in biology or the biological sciences that is undifferentiated as to title or content. Includes instruction in general biology and programs covering a variety of biological specializations.

This program is available in these options:

  • Certificate / Diploma
  • Associate degree
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Graduate Certificate
  • Master's degree
  • Doctoral degree

High School Courses

See the high school courses recommended for programs in this career cluster:

See the high school courses recommended for programs in this pathway:

Additional Information

Dissecting frogs. That's what many people think of when they hear the word biology. But that's a very small part of what biology students do. They study every aspect of the living world around us, from microbes to ecosystems.

An undergraduate degree may prepare you for entry-level positions in a variety of scientific fields, but for the most part you'll need further study. If you want to be a researcher, you'll likely need at least a master's degree, and often a PhD.

Students majoring in biology take a wide variety of classes. These might include microbiology, cell biology, botany, animal and marine biology, genetics, ecology and evolution.

That means it's important to concentrate on math, chemistry and physics, as well as biology, early in your high school studies.

Students shouldn't neglect English either, says Michael Lizotte. He is an assistant professor of biology at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh.

"The skills learned in a good high school course in comparative literature could be more useful than taking one more high school biology course," he says. That's because biology students need to read and write reports and studies.

There's more to getting ready for college than simply taking classes. "The real key to being prepared for college is developing self-discipline and good study skills," says Sarah Armstrong. She is a biology professor at Millsaps College.

Don't forget about volunteer work. It can provide you with great experience.

"Students will find having laboratory or field experience useful, as our program is research-based," says Kathryn L. Edwards. She is a biology professor at Kenyon College in Ohio. "However, other activities are also useful, such as hospital or geriatric service, veterinary clinic aid, and any activity in which you can show leadership skills."

Textbooks are not cheap in biology programs. Some schools may also charge a minimal fee for laboratory costs.


Occupational Outlook Handbook
Find current information related to the field of study for Biological Scientists

Biology Resources and Links
Review sites dedicated to biology and science education

Online Biology Book
Estrella Mountain Community College's list of helpful links

Science Careers
Check out the latest career opportunities and news from the journal Science


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