Biological Sciences (Ecology & Evolution)

What Is Biological Sciences (Ecology & Evolution) ?

This concentration within the biology major is an opportunity for students to explore, in greater detail, the interactions among living organisms and their environments. It also allows the further exploration of evolutionary processes at molecular, organismal and ecosystem levels. Students are able to focus their upper level elective courses on ecology, evolution and related topics.

Biology is the scientific study of life and life processes. Biologists study the organization of life: the structures of molecules to the balance of ecosystems. Biology majors learn to observe critically the details of all life; they analyze data and apply biological knowledge learned in the classroom to draw conclusions about their observations. 

Biologists are able to make significant contributions to maintaining the health and well-being of the human population, as well as preserving and protecting the environment. They develop a knowledge base and scientific way of thinking that enables them to make informed personal health and public policy decisions.


This curriculum information is intended as a general information guide for students considering enrollment in this major. These online tools are designed to assist you, but are not a substitute for planning with an academic or faculty advisor.

If you are currently enrolled at UC, you can audit your degree online. If you are considering transferring to this major from another school use the course applicability system (CAS) to see how credits you have earned will apply to this major at UC. For course descriptions by college.

Biology Major Requirements Checklist

Note: After entering the College of Arts and Sciences, biology majors must take all required courses in mathematics, chemistry, physics and biology from the College of Arts and Sciences unless prior permission is obtained. See details below. [1]

First Year Courses
First Year Course Number Credits
*English Composition ENGL 101, 102 6
Foundations of Applied Calculus (or substitution, or waiver) MATH 224 (QR) 0-3
Applied Calculus I & II MATH 226, 227 (QR) [2] 6
Biology Lecture and Lab BIOL 101/111, 102/112, 103-113 15
First Year Chemistry Lecture and Lab CHEM 101/111, 102/112, 103/113 15
Introduction to Statistics (if not taking 224) STAT 241 [3] 0-4
Total for first year   45-46
(a) Applied Calculus I & II, MATH 226 & 227 (6 credits)    
Second Year Courses
Second Year
Course Number
*Intermediate Composition ENGL 289 3
Introduction to Statistics (if not already completed) STAT 241 [3] 0-4
Sophomore Biology BIOL 302, 301, 303 [4] 12
Organic Chemistry Lecture and Lab CHEM 201/211, 202/212, 203/213 [5] 16
*Humanities (HU)   3
*Social Sciences (SS)   3
*Literature (LT)   3
Free electives (recommended to count in a minor or other program)   1-4
Total for second year   45
(b) Calculus I & II, MATH 251 & 252/256 (10 credits)    
Third & Fourth Year Courses
Third & Fourth Years
Course Number Credits
Two Upper Level Biology Major Elective Courses with Lab see course list [6] Minimum 6
Four Upper Level Biology Major Elective Courses see course list [6] Minimum 12
College Physics PHYS 101/111, 102/112, 103/113 [7] 15
Biology Capstone (added to a certain biology course) BIOL 686 [8] 1
*Foreign Language see checklist   15-18
*Social Sciences (SS)   6
*Historical Perspectives (HP)   9
*Humanities, Literature, or Fine Arts (HU, LT, or FA)   3
*Social & Ethical Issues (if not already taken, SE)   3
Free electives (recommended to count in a minor or other program)   17-20
Total for third & fourth years   90
Total overall   Minimum 180