The Undergraduate Concentration in Biology

A concentration in biology provides excellent preparation for students intent on careers in biological research who want to go to graduate school, for those seeking careers in medicine, veterinary medicine, and dentistry, and for those interested in the allied health professions such as public health, genetic counseling, physical therapy, or physician assistant. For those seeking courses concerned with ecology or environmental science, the biology department offers study in those areas and participates in a program for a residential semester in Environmental Science at the Woods Hole Biological Laboratory.

Two different degrees are offered. The Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology provides students with a general background in biology and provides flexibility with fewer requirements for quantitative and physical science courses. The Bachelor of Science degree in Biology is an intensive biology option that provides students with a strong background in several areas of biology and is recommended for students pursuing a career in research.

The undergraduate degree programs in Biology have been revised for students matriculating in Fall 2013 or later. The cornerstone of the new curriculum is the introduction of a new three semester set of courses: BIOL 14a (Genetics and Genomics), BIOL 15b (Cells and Organisms) and BIOL 16a (Evolution and Biodiversity). This sequence replaces the existing two semester sequence BIOL 22a/22b, and follows new pedagogical principles for teaching Biology.  At the same time, the expanded course sequence will help cover additional material that premedical students will need for the new MCAT exams that was not covered in core courses in the past.

The new set of courses can be taken in any order and is designed to be accessible to freshmen. Students who take these courses early in their stay at Brandeis will have opportunities to take more advanced, specialized courses and to do research in their junior and senior years.  

The biology department has approximately 30 active full-time faculty members with teaching and research interests in the fields of genetics, molecular biology, development, immunology, neurobiology, motility, cell biology, and structural biology. Students have the opportunity to become integral members of research laboratories in the department. A rich schedule of colloquia and seminars features faculty from around the world talking about current research.

Many students find research opportunities in our labs. A list of papers that undergraduates have contributed to can be found here.

Biology UDRs

The UDR (Undergraduate Departmental Representative) program has been created to foster communication between Brandeis undergraduates and faculty. The Biology UDRs have created a facebook page.

Combined B.S./M.S. Program

The Biology undergraduate program does offer a B.S./M.S. option. More information about this program is available.

Graduate Programs in the Biological Sciences

For M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in the biological sciences, see the separate listings for Biochemistry and Biophysics, Biotechnology, Genetic Counseling, Molecular and Cell Biology, and Neuroscience programs.

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