Biology: Pre-graduate/Pre-professional

​​​​​​​​​​​Program Description

Mitosis, meiosis and microscopes. If you can say that fast five times, you might have the tiny foundational beginnings for a hugely successful career as a biologist. Whether you’re interested in graduate school, medical school or finding a rewarding job right after graduation, you’ll find real-world research opportunities to purse studies in the field of life.

Points of Pride

  • CMU’s $95 million Biosciences Building is the largest capital project ever in the university’s 120-plus year history. The four-story, 169,000-square-foot building, opening for classes in January 2017, will dramatically advance the university’s instructional learning and scientific research space.
  • CMU is a Carnegie-classified doctoral research institution. Its faculty and students – including undergrads – work elbow to elbow to change lives by researching cancer vaccines and better treatment for Huntington's, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases.
  • You can develop your research skills in biology and other areas by working at the CMU Biological Station on Beaver Island. CMU is the only university in Michigan and one of two in the Midwest to operate an island research station.
  • The mesocosm research facility at the Beaver Island Biological Station is funded by a National Science Foundation grant and allows faculty and students to replicate Great Lakes conditions in a dozen 250-gallon experimental tanks.
  • A CMU biology researcher and his student assistants were the first to discover evidence of Asian carp in the Great Lakes. They also do research in Antarctica, thanks to a National Science Foundation grant.
  • Biologists in CMU's Institute for Great Lakes Research study the sustainability and management of the world's largest supply of surface fresh water. They also oversee a $10 million grant from the Environmental Protection Agency to monitor and assess Great Lakes coastal wetlands.
  • CMU also offers the nation's only bachelor's degree concentration in microscopy.

Put Your Degree to Work

With a biology degree, you can be a research biologist, cell biologist, elementary or high school teacher, forestry technician, microscopist, soil scientist, university or college professor, veterinarian, wildlife biologist, or zoologist, to name a few.

​U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics sample data

JobMedian PayJob Growth through ​2022​
Biological technician$39,750 per year10% (8,000 more jobs)
Microbiologist$66,260 per year7% (1,400 more jobs)
Zoologist$57,710 per year5% (1,000 more jobs)

Program Overview

The course listings below are a representation of what this academic program requires. For a full review of this program in detail please see our official online academic bulletin AND consult with an academic advisor. This listing does not include the General Education courses required for all majors and may not include some program specific information, such as admissions, retention, and termination standards.

(Click on the course name or number for a complete course description.)

Biology Major: Pregraduate/Preprofessional Option

Pregraduate/Preprofessional option is for students who plan to enter a graduate or professional school after graduation from CMU.
Total: 70-74 semester hours Note: CHM 425 or 521, MTH 133, and CPS 110 OR CPS 150 are recommended courses.
Core Courses II
Students selecting the Pre-Graduate/Pre-Professional option are required to take 7 hours in addition to the required core courses. Choose from the options listed below:
Option A
Option B
Option C
Core Courses I
BIO 110
Concepts of Biology
BIO 203
General Botany
BIO 208
Required Courses II
PHY 131
College Physics II
Required Courses I
Select one of the following options
Option A
Option B
BIO 218
General Zoology
BIO 326
BIO 340
CHM 345
Organic Chemistry I
CHM 346
Organic Chemistry II
CHM 349
Organic Chemistry Laboratory
MTH 132
Calculus I
College Physics I
Other Requirements I
Select one of the following:
If BIO 500 is selected, it may count toward the 42 hours required in BIO.
BIO 500
Biological Statistics
Elementary Statistical Analysis
Biology electives to be selected in consultation with a biology advisor. BIO 403 is recommended as an elective course.

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