Traditional Programs Adult Programs Course Descriptions Graduate Catalog

Biology - Major/Minor

For information, contact Dr. Richard Kliman, rmkliman@cedarcrest.edu, 610-606-4666, ext. 3501

Program Description

The biology major is offered within a challenging, comprehensive liberal arts education, with state-of-the art laboratories and facilities and a very active program of undergraduate research. The same is true for all other majors within the department of biological sciences: environmental conservation, genetic engineering and biotechnology, neuroscience, nuclear medicine technology, and biology/secondary education, as well as the department’s minors in biology and global diseases. The department also provides pre-professional education for medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine and other allied health fields. All coursework and laboratories emphasize the development of skills in reading, questioning, analyzing, and evaluating assumptions along with development in technical writing and oral presentations. Highly motivated students commonly participate in research during their first year and all students are encouraged to participate in research during their sophomore, junior, and senior years at Cedar Crest College with the option of completing a senior thesis. Graduates with biology majors go on to advanced study, professional programs, and research positions in universities and pharmaceutical firms. Biologists work in agriculture and medical professions, in schools, hospitals, clinics, the government and zoos, and as naturalists, science writers, medical illustrators, and forensic scientists.

Program Mission Statement for the Biology Major (B.S.)

Within the broader mission of the department of biological sciences, the mission of the biology major is to promote an understanding of the structure and function of, and the interrelationships among, biological systems; and to promote a broad understanding of the physical world. To accomplish this mission, students study biological systems at all structural levels of the biological hierarchy: molecules and cells; organisms; and populations, communities, and ecosystems. Students also complete course work in chemistry, physics, and mathematics.

Program Requirements for the Biology Major (B.S.)

A minimum cumulative grade-point average of 2.000 and a minimum average in the major of 2.000 is required for the major and minor in Biology. A grade of C- or better is needed for all courses that fulfill the departmental requirements. Courses transferred in for all majors must be taken less than ten years ago. Students may not declare multiple majors in any combination of: Biology, Environmental Conservation (B.S. or B.A.), Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, Integrated Biology, Neuroscience, or Nuclear Medicine Technology. Students majoring in the Biological Sciences may not minor in Biology. Students must earn a grade of C- or better in prerequisite courses before proceeding to subsequent courses. Any student who withdraws from a course or earns a grade lower than a C- may repeat the course only one time.
Total number of credits required by program: 65 credits

Course Requirements

BIO 123 Foundations in Biology 4 credits
BIO 124 Principles of Cell and Molecular Biology 4 credits (Students with Advanced Placement credit for BIO 123 and/or 124 are required to take the BIO 123 and 124 Labs.)
BIO 239 Animal Ecology, Development and Evolution 4 credits
BIO 231 Genetics 4 credits
BIO 350 Junior Colloquium 2 credits
BIO 356 Science, Ethics, and Society 3 credits
CHE 111 Chemical Principles 4 credits
CHE 112 Chemical Equilibrium and Analysis 4 credits
CHE 205 Organic Chemistry I 4 credits
CHE 206 Organic Chemistry II or CHE 320 Environmental Chemistry 4 credits
MAT 141 Calculus I 3 credits
MAT 142 Calculus II or BIO 248 Biostatistics** 3 credits
PHY 101 Introductory College Physics I 4 credits
PHY 102 Introductory College Physics II 4 credits
Electives 16 credits

Any 200- or 300-level BIO courses (aside from the Core***), with the exception of BIO 243, BIO 354, and BIO 357. CHE 217 or CHE 307, CHE 308, and CHE 348, may be applied. A student may apply up to 2 credits of BIO 353 or CHE 391, and up to 1 credit of BIO 201. At least one course must be a 4-credit lecture/lab course (i.e., with the lab explicitly associated with the lecture).

**BIO 248 can be applied to either the math or elective requirement, but not both.

*** The Biology Core is defined as BIO 123, 124, 231, 239, BIO 350, and BIO 356.

(See additional information on Thesis Option, Fulfilling the LAC requirements, and combining with Secondary Education below section on Integrated Biology Major)

Program Outcomes

All Majors within the Department of Biological Sciences have the following three outcomes:

Biology B.S. Outcomes

Integrated Biology Major (B.A.)

Program Mission Statement – Integrated Biology Major B.A.

Within the broader mission of the department of biological sciences, the mission of the integrated biology major is to promote an understanding of the structure and function of, and the interrelationships among, biological systems; and to promote thoughtful reflection on the interrelationship between the biological sciences and another discipline. To accomplish this mission, students study biological systems at all structural levels of the biological hierarchy: molecules and cells; organisms; and populations, communities, and ecosystems. Students also complete course work in a second discipline and demonstrate an awareness of the ways in which the discipline integrates with biology.

Program Requirements for the Integrated Biology Major (B.A.)

A minimum cumulative grade-point average of 2.000 and a minimum average in the major of 2.000 is required for the major and minor in Integrated Biology. A grade of C- or better is needed for all courses that fulfill the departmental requirements. Courses transferred in for all majors must be taken less than ten years ago. Students may not declare multiple majors in any combination of: Biology, Environmental Conservation (B.S. or B.A.) Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, Integrated Biology, Neuroscience or Nuclear Medicine Technology. Students majoring in the Biological Sciences may not minor in Biology. Students must earn a grade of C- or better in prerequisite courses before proceeding to subsequent courses. Any student who withdraws from a course or earns a grade lower than a C- may repeat the course only one time.
Total number of credits required by program: 56.5 credits

Course Requirements

Core
BIO 123 Foundations in Biology 4 credits
BIO 124 Principles of Cell and Molecular Biology 4 credits (Students with Advanced Placement credit for BIO 123 and/or 124 are required to take the BIO 123 and 124 Labs.)
BIO 239 Animal Ecology, Development and Evolution 4 credits
BIO 231 Genetics 4 credits
BIO 350 Junior Colloquium 2 credits
BIO 356 Science, Ethics, and Society 3 credits
BIO 357 Reflection on an Integrated Biology Major 0.5 credit
CHE 111 Chemical Principles 4 credits
CHE 112 Chemical Equilibrium and Analysis 4 credits
Mathematics Two courses 6 credits**

**Two math course appropriate for the student’s career plans, one being MAT 140 or above, to be chosen with advisor approval

Electives (12 Credits)

Any three 200- or 300-level BIO courses (aside from the Core***), with the exception of BIO 243 and BIO 354. CHE 217 or CHE 307, CHE 308 or CHE 348, may be applied. A student may apply up to 2 credits of BIO 353 or CHE 391, and up to 1 credit of BIO 201. At least one course must be a 4-credit lecture/lab course (i.e., with the lab explicitly associated with the lecture).
*** The Integrated Biology Core is defined as BIO 123, 124, 239, 231, 350, 356, and 357.

Integration Across the Disciplines (12 credits)

The Integrated Biology major offers the student the opportunity to make connections with other disciplines across the College. Students may choose 12 credits from one discipline outside the Biological Sciences, or may self-design a program across multiple disciplines with advisor approval.
Students are encouraged to consult with their academic advisors to choose courses appropriate for their future plans.

Transfer students must complete at least the following at Cedar Crest College for the B.S. in Biology or the B.A. in Integrated Biology:
BIO 350 Junior Colloquium 2 credits
BIO 356 Science, Ethics and Society 3 credits
A 4-credit lecture/lab course and additional Electives, such that a student’s Biology/Integrated Biology Electives taken at Cedar Crest College total 7 credits (see Electives above)
It is a general Cedar Crest College policy that a student must complete a minimum of 18 credits of major requirements through Cedar Crest College course work.

Additional course requirements for the Thesis Option:

All students, particularly those who are interested in attending graduate school or obtaining a research-based job following graduation, are highly encouraged to participate in independent research, which may culminate in a thesis. The thesis option begins during the student’s junior year as part of Junior Colloquium (BIO 350). Most majors from the Department of Biological Sciences require students to develop a research proposal to investigate an original research question. This experience allows the students to go beyond the basic course information, select a problem that interests them, and apply what they have learned in their coursework to a novel situation. As part of the thesis option, students will spend a minimum of two semesters working with a faculty member to conduct the research outlined in their proposal. They will then develop a written thesis detailing their project and present their final project to the department in the form of a seminar talk or poster. Requirements towards fulfilling the thesis include: a.) two semesters (4 credits) of Independent Research (BIO 353) or b.) two semesters of Independent Research (BIO 243); and one semester of Independent Research (BIO 353), and one semester (1 credit) of Senior Thesis and Presentation (BIO 354) with grades of C- or better.

Recommended courses for the B.S. in Biology or the B.A. in Integrated Biology for students also majoring in Secondary Education with a Biology concentration:

A student majoring in Secondary Education with a Biology Concentration may elect to also complete the B.S. in Biology or the B.A. in Integrated Biology. Students should note that the Secondary Education major with a Biology concentration has flexible requirements; in some cases, specific options should be selected in order to complete the requirements of both majors. While fulfilling all of the requirements of the B.S. in Biology or the B.A. in Integrated Biology (see above), taking the following courses will allow for the most efficient completion of the requirements for both majors.

Fulfillment of the LAC Requirements

Students fulfill Technology, Oral Presentation, and Information Literacy requirement through successful completion of the following required courses: BIO 123, 124, 239, 231, 350, and 356. Students also fulfill the Natural Science requirement by completing BIO 123 and 124, and the Mathematics and Logic requirement by completing the mathematics requirement of the major*. Students will fulfill the Writing 2 requirement with BIO 356.
* While a grade of C- or better is required for the major, a grade of C or better is required to fulfill LAC requirements.

Program Outcomes

All Majors within the Department of Biological Sciences have the following three outcomes:

Integrated Biology B.A. Outcomes

Biology Minor

Course Requirements

The Biology minor requires 18 credits of BIO courses (CHE 217, CHE 307, 308, and 348 are allowable). One of the courses must be a lecture/lab course and at least three credits must be taken at or above the 200-level. Students may not include both BIO 127/227, BIO 117/BIO 217, or BIO 118/218. For transfer students planning to minor in Biology, 12 of these credits must be completed at Cedar Crest College.


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