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The Department of Biological Sciences offers two B.S. degree paths: The B.S. in Biological Sciences and the B.S. in Microbiology.

The B.S. in Biological Sciences program provides majors with a broad education in the study of life.  This curriculum exposes students to the fundamentals of the discipline: genetics, cell and molecular biology, evolutionary biology, and ecology.  In addition, Biological Sciences majors may take advantage of over 70 different elective courses on topics such as macromolecular structure, pathogenic bacteriology, cancer biology, infectious disease ecology, human genetics, and global change ecology.  

The B.S. in Microbiology program provides majors with a more focused education on the biology and roles of microscopic life forms that are active in all of our environments and daily activities.  The laboratory-intensive curriculum provides knowledge on the genetics and physiology common to all microbes and allows students to explore specific interests with a broad range of advanced electives such as pathogenic bacteriology, immunology, environmental and food microbiology, virology, microbial forensics, and bioinformatics.

Modern biology increasingly relies on knowledge, skills, and perspectives associated with other scientific fields, particularly chemistry, mathematics, physics and statistics.  Success in Biological Sciences-associated careers requires students to master the fundamentals of these cognate fields and to be able to apply these skill sets.

As a scientific discipline, biology is more than simply knowledge about living organisms.  By integrating education and research, our majors are training to be leaders in their field who practice innovative and interdisciplinary approaches in biological research. By participating in undergraduate research during the academic year, our students are discovering through hands-on experience what it means to Invent the Future. Our majors are strongly encouraged to explore internships and research opportunities here on campus and elsewhere during the summer.

To augment and hone their knowledge and techniques, many departmental majors also choose to double major or minor in applied life science programs in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences or the College of Natural Resources and the Environment.

The majority of our graduates continue on to advanced studies in the health professions or in various branches of the biological sciences.  Biological Sciences graduates pursue professional degrees in medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, pharmacy, and nursing, or M.S. or Ph.D. degrees in ecology, environmental biology, microbiology, botany, zoology, cell biology, molecular biology, and biomedical sciences (just to name a few).   Students interested in entering the workforce are provided the core background for opportunities in biotechnology, food science, bioinformatics, bio-business, and health-related industries.  

→Prospective Biological Sciences Majors

→Current Biological Sciences Majors

→Undergraduate Research


Contact Information


Derring Hall Room 2089
1405 Perry Street
Mail Code 0406
Blacksburg, VA  24061

(540) 231-6407
bioadvising@vt.edu

Monday through Friday
8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.


Degree Checksheets

B.S. in Biological Sciences

B.S. in Microbiology

B.S. in Biological Sciences
Microbiology/Immunology Option

Minor in Biological Sciences

Other forms