Please note: The information displayed here is current as of Monday, May 25, 2015, but the official Course Catalog should be used for all official planning.

2014-2015 Course Catalog

Required for the biology major

  1. BIOL 130, 150, and 170
  2. CHEM 116
  3. At least seven six-unit courses in biology numbered 200 or above (excluding Senior Experience courses), of which at least five must be laboratory courses
  4. Completion of Biology Senior Experience (A student-directed project, 6 units of BIOL 650, 2 units of BIOL 600)
    Note: Only two six-unit courses designated as tutorial, directed study, or independent study can be counted toward the major or minor requirements and only one of those can be counted toward the upper-level laboratory requirement.

Required for the biology minor

  1. BIOL 130, 150, and 170. Students majoring in disciplines requiring a research methods and statistics course may request exemption from the BIOL 170 requirement.
  2. At least four six-unit courses in biology numbered 200 or above, of which at least two must be laboratory courses.
  3. C average in the minor
    Note: Only two six-unit courses designated as tutorial, directed study, or independent study can be counted toward the major or minor requirements and only one of these can be counted toward the upper-level laboratory requirement.

Required for the interdisciplinary major in the natural sciences in biology and physics or geology

  1. BIOL 130, 150, and 170
  2. PHYS 141 and 151 or 151 and 160
  3. GEOL 110 and GEOL 210, if geology is the secondary discipline.
  4. At least 10 six-unit courses in the natural sciences (biology, chemistry, geology, and physics) numbered 200 or above, with at least five in biology (of which at least three must be laboratory courses), and at least three in the secondary discipline in other departments
  5. Completion of the Biology Senior Experience
  6. Note: Previous interdisciplinary combinations of biology and chemistry have been replaced by the Biochemistry major.

Wisconsin Teacher Certification

Students who major in biology and who wish to gain certification to teach biology in Wisconsin public schools should choose a broad range of biology courses that includes ecology, plant and animal organismal biology, as well as molecular and cellular biology. Students should gain experience in both field and laboratory research. Beyond the coursework required for the biology major, students will need to take the following additional courses:

  • One 6-unit geology course
  • One 6-unit physics course
  • EDST 180: Psychology of Learning
  • EDST 350: Ethnicity, Cultural Diversity, and Education
  • EDST 440: Sociology of Education
  • EDUC 560: Methods in Middle and Secondary Teaching
  • EDUC 430: Educating All Learners
  • EDUC 650: Student Teaching
  • EDUC 660: Student Teaching Seminar
For more detailed information about the certification program refer to the course of study for the Department of Education.

Senior Experience in Biology

Required: A student-designed project, 6 units of BIOL 650, 2 units of BIOL 600.
Purposeful advising in the spring of the sophomore year and attendance at the spring BioFest is meant to inspire sophomore students to think about what they might want to undertake as their culminating project in biology. During the fall of the junior year, students will hear from department faculty, the internship coordinator, and others about opportunities available for senior experience projects at a junior retreat. Breakout groups will allow students to brainstorm ideas for projects. Project work (research, internship, creation of a curricular module, draft of a grant proposal, draft of a children's book on biology, production of art about biology, or other creative project) generally will be undertaken prior to term 2 of the senior year and may be based on an internship, tutorial, course work, independent study, or other work.
Usually in the senior year, students will take two terms of BIOL 600: Recent Advances in Biology Lecture Series (1 unit each), one term of BIOL 650 (5 units) in the winter term and 1 additional unit of BIOL 650 in the spring term for BioFest. The purpose of the BIOL 650 course is to bring to culmination each student’s individual senior experience project and to place that project in an academic context. Each student will prepare a paper that places her or his project into a biological context, compares it to our past and current understanding of the topic using primary literature, and summarizes the student’s project or results. Students will begin gathering and organizing academic resources for this paper in the term 1 BIOL 600 course. In BIOL 650, students preparing a thesis for honors will prepare a significant portion of their thesis, while a student creating a visual product or curriculum will describe the biological underpinnings of the work and reflect on the production of the work itself, for example. The senior experience will culminate with a symposium, BioFest, in the spring term, at which all students will present the results of their projects (or the project itself) as a poster, demonstration, or other visual display.

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