Biological Science Bachelor of Science
Department of Biology
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OVERVIEW OF MAJOR
Are microscopic bacteria and viruses a curiosity to you? Do you enjoy learning about organ systems and cells in humans and animals? Would you like to have a role in the detection, diagnosis and treatment of diseases? Have you wondered about the effects of a forest fire and how new growth occurs? Do you enjoy doing research? Do you have a passion for biological sciences you want to share with others? Do you want to go further in your education and pursue a health care profession, such as a chiropractor or pharmacist, or even medical school? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you may want to consider biological science as a major.

Biology is the study of all living things--from bacteria and viruses that can be seen only under a microscope, to plants, animals, and humans and their relationship to their environments. As a biology major, you will study the structure and function of cells, organ systems and tissues in animals and humans, the structure and function of plants, ecology (the relationship between living things and their environment), and evolution. You will learn about forensic biology (identification of human remains), genetics and heredity, aquatic toxicology (methods that biologists use to measure the impact of pollution on water), microscopic organisms such as bacteria, and laboratory techniques that biologists use in research. As you can see, this major provides a broad background in the basic biological sciences. It also offers an opportunity to choose an area of emphasis within life sciences that is related to your particular career goal. (For example, anatomy for health professions, aquatic biology for marine biologists, etc.)

The curriculum includes a two-semester introductory biology sequence, cell biology, developmental biology, ecology, evolution, and genetics. Required courses in the physical sciences include a minimum of one year in introductory chemistry, and at least one course in organic chemistry, and two semesters of physics, each with labs. Biochemistry is also required. In addition, students choose a selected field of 12 credits in one of the following: anatomy/physiology, aquatic biology, behavioral biology, cellular/molecular and genetic biology, ecology, evolution/genetics and systematics, microbiology, integrative organismal biology or a self designed field. There is an additional requirement of one course in two other fields, which assures a broad base of study. A calculus course and a statistics course are also required.

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CHARACTERISTICS AND SKILLS
* Attention to detail
* Critical thinking
* Strong organization skills
* Analytical skills
* Problem solving skills
* Interpreting technical/scientific data
* Perceiving/defining cause and effect relationships
* Good decision maker
* Communication skills – oral and written

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POTENTIAL CAREER OPTIONS
Training in biology prepares you for a very large number of occupations. Some involve daily interaction with dozens of people, others can be done in complete isolation; some are narrowly specific, others require knowledge far beyond science. Without advanced degrees, the demand for this major has never been high in any given employment area, but because of the diversity of career options, most students find employment. Career options related to biology include water quality assessments, field and lab technician work, biotechnology, genetic research, agriculture, or sales (i.e. pharmaceutical, agricultural). Biological Sciences can also be the beginning of your education towards dental, medical, or veterinary school, and a number of health professions such as podiatry or optometry. Graduates are encouraged to pursue advanced degrees to attain higher salaried positions and opportunities for rising to top professional levels. Participation in internships and laboratory or research experience is highly recommended and encouraged by the Department to enhance your practical training and development.

Combining biology with non-science skills can involve some exciting careers as well. Incorporate biology and English to become a technical writer. Combine biology and art and go into medical and scientific illustration. Link biology and computer science to work in bioinformatics. Combine biology and psychology as a neuroscientist or genetic counselor. Join biology and political science to work in environmental law or be a patent lawyer in biotechnology. Try mixing biology and business to get into hospital administration and biotechnology administration. There are specialized Master’s degrees designed for many of these unique career paths.

The following are some of the career opportunities for biology majors, some requiring a Master’s or Ph.D.:

* Aquarium & museum worker
* Assistant research scientist
* Biological researcher
* Biotechnologist
* Brewery laboratory assistant
* Consumer product researcher
* Marine bacteriologist, biologist, or ecologist
* Nuclear medicine technician
* Park naturalist
* Conservationist
* Pharmaceutical researcher or salesperson
* Public health officer
* Science librarian
* Environmental educator, health specialist, or impact specialist
* Ecologist
* Industrial hygienist
* Medical or clinical laboratory technologist
* Peace Corps
* Various animal and human health professions

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RELATED STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS
* Biology Club
* Premedica Club
* Pre-Veterinary Medicine Association
* Pre-Physical Therapy Club
* Buglore Club
* Pre-Dental Club
* Natural Sciences College Council

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MORE INFORMATION
Department of Biology
E106 Anatomy/Zoology Bldg
1878 Campus Delivery
Colorado State University
Fort Collins, CO 80523-1878
970-491-7011
http://www.colostate.edu/Depts/Biology/
* Academic and career advising for majors


Center for Advising and Student Achievement (CASA)
TILT Building
801 Oval Drive
Colorado State University
Fort Collins, CO 80523-1032
970-491-7095
http://www.casa.colostate.edu
* Academic advising/Major exploration


Career Center
120 Lory Student Center
Fort Collins, CO 80523
970-491-5707
http://career.colostate.edu
* Major and career exploration/Job search information


Admissions and Undergraduate Recruitment
Ammons Hall
711 Oval Drive
Colorado State University
Fort Collins, CO 80523
970-491-6909
http://www.admissions.colostate.edu
* Admission applications/University visits and tours


General Catalog Online
http://www.catalog.colostate.edu/

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