Department of Biological Sciences

The Bachelor of Science degree in the Biological Sciences provides a flexible program of coursework in contemporary biology. After two years of required biology core courses, students take 24 hours of biology electives.

Student Learning Outcomes

College of Science
Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences

  1. Explain core concepts for biological literacy including: evolution; biological structure-function relationships; information flow; pathways and transformations of energy and matter; interconnectedness and interactions of living systems.
  2. Communicate biological information in written and oral form. 
  3. Critically evaluate scientific literature and communicate research findings to broad audiences.
  4. Interpret and accurately communicate data and analyses.
  5. Use basic scientific techniques and instrumentation to generate biological data.
  6. Effective application of laboratory and/or field techniques.
  7. Collaborate effectively as a member of a laboratory/research group.
  8. Use quantitative reasoning, modeling and statistics to describe living systems.
  9. Ability to draw biological inferences from raw data.
  10. Proficiency in data analysis and interpretation.

Curriculum in Biological Sciences

Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences

General Education Requirements
Course Name/ # Credit Hours  Course Name/#  Credit Hours
English    CHEM 1017  3
ENGL 1157 3  Humanities  
ENGL 1158 or 11591 3  Foreign Language I and II3  6
Mathematics    Literature4  3
MATH 11252 3  Social Sciences  
MATH 11262 3  Social Sciences elective4 6
Science    Arts  
BIOS 1083 3 Arts elective2 3
BIOS 1073 3    
    Total 39
Other Requirements
Course Name/ # Credit Hours  Course Name/#  Credit Hours
CHEM 1007 1  PHYS 1031 or 1061  3
CHEM 1008 1  PHYS 1033 or 1063  1
CHEM 1018 3  PHYS 1032 or 1062  3
CHEM 2217 3  PHYS 1034 or 1065  1
CHEM 3218 3  Approved Electives5  25
MATH 2314 3    
    Total 47
Course Requirements for Major
Course Name/ # Credit Hours  Course Name/#  Credit Hours
BIOS 1071  1  BIOS Elective6,7,8,9,10  24
BIOS 1081  1  BIOS 4010 (exit exam)  0
BIOS 2014  4    
BIOS 2114  4    
    Total 34
Total Credit Hours Required Credit Hours
  120
Additional Requirement
 Minimum grade of C in all Mathematics and Science courses (BIOS, CHEM, CSCI, EES, MATH, PHYS, PSYC)
  1.  "C" or better required
  2.  Math 2114, 2124 may be substituted for Math 1125, 1126
  3.  Completion of six credit hours in one foreign language is required
  4.  Check General Education Courses to confirm what courses fulfill this requirement.
  5.  Approved electives: Math 1115 may count as a free elective.
  6.  A maximum of 4 BIOS elective credit hours may be at the 2000 level (BIOS 2002, 2082, 2090, 2092, 2313, 2553, 2663, 2743, 2741, 2904, 2914).
  7.  A maximum of 7 credit hours may consist of research/apprenticeship (BIOS 2002, 2082, 2092, 3091, 3092, 4091) or seminar (BIOS 3091) courses.
  8.  A minimum of 17 credit hours must be lecture or lecture/laboratory courses at the 3000/4000 level (BIOS 3113, 3284, 3354, 3453, 3490, 3590, 3651, 3653, 3854, 3953, 4103, 4113, 4153, 4490, 4524, 4534, 4543, 4590, 4644, 4713, 4723, 4844, 4974).
  9.  A minimum of two courses at the 3000/4000 level must have a laboratory component (BIOS 3354, 3651 and 3653, 3854, 4524, 4534, 4644, 4844, 4974).
  10.  A minimum of two courses must be at the 4000 level (BIOS 4103, 4113, 4153, 4490, 4524, 4534, 4543, 4590, 4644, 4713, 4723, 4844, 4974).

Recommended Four-Year Plan of Study
Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences

Four Year Plan of Study
First Year of Enrollment 
First Term  Second Term
Course Prefix & Number Credit Hours Course Prefix & Number Credit Hours
ENGL 1157  3  BIOS 1073, 1071  4
BIOS 1083, 1081  4  ENGL 1158 or 1159  3
MATH 1125  3  MATH 1126  3
Social Science elective  3  CHEM 1017, 1007  4
Elective (BIOS 1001 or 1002)  1    
UNIV 10011  1    
Total Hours  15 Total Hours 14
Second Year of Enrollment
First Term  Second Term
Course Prefix & Number Credit Hours Course Prefix & Number Credit Hours
BIOS 2014  4  BIOS 2114  4
Foreign Language I  3  Foreign Language II  3
CHEM 1018, 1008  4  BIOS elective 2000 level  4
MATH 2314  3  Literature  3
     CHEM 2217  3
Total Hours  14 Total Hours 17
Third Year of Enrollment
First Term  Second Term
Course Prefix & Number Credit Hours Course Prefix & Number Credit Hours
BIOS 3000+  3  BIOS 3000+  3
CHEM 3218  3  BIOS 3000+  3
PHYS 1031 and 1033, or 1061 and 1063  4  PHYS 1032 and 1034, or 1062 and 1065  4
ARTS  3  Social Science Elective  3
Elective  3    
Total Hours  16 Total Hours 13
Fourth Year of Enrollment
First Term Second Term
Course Prefix & Number Credit Hours Course Prefix & Number Credit Hours
BIOS 3000+  4  BIOS 4010 (exit exam)  0
BIOS 3000+  3  BIOS 3000+  4
Elective  9  Elective 11
Total Hours  16 Total Hours 15
Total Degree Hours 120
  1. Required for all first-time full-time students.

Minor in Biological Sciences

An undergraduate minor in biological sciences may be obtained by completing at least 18 credit hours in biological sciences with a grade of C or better in each course. Departmental and course prerequisites must be observed. Biological Sciences electives may not be chosen from courses designed for non-majors only. At least 9 hours must be at the 3000 level or above, with a maximum of 3 credit hours of BIOS 3092. At least 9 hours must be completed at UNO.

Honors in Biological Sciences

An honors program is available to students enrolled in the biological sciences curriculum. To be admitted to the Program a student must have completed Biological Sciences 2014 and 2114, while achieving minimal grade point averages of 3.25 cumulative and 3.5 in biological sciences. In order to graduate with Honors in Biological Sciences the student must complete the curriculum with the minimum grade point averages required for admission to the Program, complete six credit hours in biological sciences honors courses, earn six additional credit hours in Biological Sciences 4091, and defend a written honors thesis before a committee composed of the faculty research director, another faculty member appointed by the chairman, and a representative of the Honors Program.