Biological Sciences


Why study Biological Sciences?

Biology is the scientific study of life and life processes. Biologists study the organization of life from 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 will enable them to make informed personal health and public policy decisions.

Admission Requirements

Freshmen applicants, please visit the Admission Requirements page for more information.

Students who have an interest in the living world around them, how the body works, the causes of diseases, etc. will often find a biology major very rewarding. Successful biology majors are good at making careful observations and recording information in a logical way. They excel at analyzing that information (critical thinking), which often involves employing basic math skills. Since many science courses involve laboratories, students who enjoy active, hands-on learning will enjoy the biology major. Visual learners will especially appreciate the beauty and complexity of the natural world. The major requires a significant amount of hard work and study time, but can result in a very rewarding career.

Graduates with a BS in biology have a wide range of career options as well as options for graduate study in biology.  The BA degree may be preferable for students seeking a second major in biology or those interested in careers in teaching or entering the workforce in areas such as ecology/environment, working with animals, and laboratory research upon graduation. The BA degree will generally not serve the needs of a pre-Professional student (pre-med, pre-vet, etc.) who should instead select the BS degree in biology. A few examples of career fields open to BA biology majors include the following (many of which require additional degrees):

  • Academic, industrial, environmental/organismal, medical/pharmaceutical researcher
  • Occupational therapist, physical therapist
  • Hospital / healthcare administration
  • Law, specifically areas that include environmental issues and patent law requiring a solid scientific background
  • Medical lab technologist
  • Nurse
  • Middle/high school educator
  • Forestry, horticulture, park service, wildlife/fishery biologist
  • Pharmaceutical / medical device sales or marketing
  • Regulatory affairs specialist
  • Scientific writing
  • Zookeeper, naturalist

Students working toward an undergraduate degree at UC can earn a minor, while non-degree students (e.g., graduate students, non-matriculated students) can earn a certificate. The requirements are the same for both. See an undergraduate student advisor in the Department of Biological Sciences to create a plan to meet the requirements.

Course Requirements (31-32 hours):

  • Biology I & II with Labs, BIOL 1081-1082, 1081L-1082L  (8 hours)
  • Genetics , BIOL 2083  (3 hours)
  • Evolution and Ecology, BIOL 2084C OR Cell Biology, BIOL 2085C  (4 hours)
  • General Chemistry I & II with Labs, CHEM 1040-1041, 1040L-1041L  (10 hours)
  • Two upper level electives, BIOL 3000 and above  (6-7 hours)* *Two courses are required;  consult list of upper level courses posted by Biology department each academic year.  One must have a lab component - this may be taken either by completing a combined course (designated C) or by completing a lecture course with a companion laboratory course, or by completing Undergraduate research for 3 credits in a single semester with a public presentation.

    Click here to declare the minor online

Contact department via information which appears on this page.

Students in the UC College of Arts and Sciences enjoy many benefits afforded through study at a research-intensive institution ranked among the nation's top 25 public research universities. UC's urban, Tristate location offers exciting opportunities for global education, research and service learning, while its student-centered focus includes an 11:1 student-faculty ratio, a nationally recognized Center for Exploratory Studies and a highly successful First Year Experience program that teaches critical skills for first-year students and provides connections with important campus resources.

Faculty within the Department of Biological Sciences are actively engaged in research in a variety of areas. Undergraduates have the opportunity to participate in this research and can earn academic credit that can be applied toward their upper-level biology course requirements. Outstanding undergraduates (with a GPA of at least 3.3 overall) may apply for admission to the honors program in biology as early as the spring semester of their sophomore year.

Teaching laboratories within the department are well-equipped and devoted to undergraduate education. Faculty are involved and dedicated to employing new teaching methods and technology that enrich students’ educational experiences.

To graduate from the UC College of Arts and Sciences, students must:

  • Earn at least 120 credits. This can include transfer credit, AP credit and free electives, but does not include preparatory coursework. Students who have met all other degree requirements must continue earning credit until the total number of their earned hours comes to at least 120.
  • Attain a 2.0 grade point average for all courses taken at the University of Cincinnati.
  • Attain a 2.0 grade point average for all courses within the biology major.
  • Be in good academic standing, that is, not on either academic probation or disciplinary probation or suspension.
  • Complete the residency requirement by earning at least 30 credits after matriculating into the college, including at least 12 credits from the A&S Biology Department that count toward major requirements.
  • Complete all of the requirements of at least one major (see major requirements above).
  • Complete the College Core Requirements.
  • Submit an application for graduation to the registrar's office by their posted deadline.

Admission to A&S is generally available for any off-campus student who was admissible directly from high school and has 2.0 GPA cum and a 2.0 in the most recent institution.

Students who were not admissible directly from high school must have:

  • 24 semester (36 quarter) hours earned
  • at least a 2.0 GPA

For more information, visit the Transfer and Transition Advising Center.

Transfer students should apply using our transfer student online application.

Transfer Articulation Agreements & Pathways

UC has developed clear pathways (articulation agreements) between select associate degrees at partner institutions and compatible bachelor’s degrees at UC.  Each pathway includes a Transfer Degree Map that offers a semester-by-semester course comparison to assist with your transfer planning. 

The following institutions have Transfer Degree Maps for this major:

  • Cincinnati State Technical & Community College
  • Sinclair Community College
  • Terra State Community College

Admission to A&S is generally available for any on-campus student who was admissible directly from high school and has 2.0 GPA cum.

Students who were not admissible directly from high school must have:

  • 24 semester (36 quarter) hours earned
  • at least a 2.0 GPA

Application Deadlines

While midyear admission is possible, fall semester is generally the best time to enter the college, since many course sequences begin in that semester. Applicants to the UC College of Arts and Sciences who are enrolled or who were previously enrolled as degree-seeking students in A&S or in other UC colleges should apply for admission directly to A&S (in French West, 2nd Floor). All other applicants who wish to earn an undergraduate degree from A&S should apply through the Office of Admissions (3rd Floor, University Pavilion).

The University of Cincinnati and all regional campuses are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Contact Information

Brian Kinkle
603B Rieveschl Hall
Cincinnati, OH 45221-0006
(513) 556-9756

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Program Code: 15BAC-BIOL-BA