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Major in Biology

Note: The UBC Okanagan campus also offers Majors in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology, Microbiology, and Zoology.

The Biology Major is designed to provide students with an excellent grounding in all fields of biology and the basic practical skills of the working biologist. This program prepares students for graduate school and professional programs. Students graduating from the UBC Okanagan campus with a B.Sc. in Biology will have a wide variety of practical experience and skills in laboratory, fieldwork, and communications (both oral and written).

Electives to satisfy B.Sc. Degree Requirements should include a minimum of 12 credits of Arts electives (in addition to 6 credits in English) and 12 credits of other courses (chosen, if needed, to ensure prerequisites are met for third- and fourth-year elective courses).

A minimum of 42 upper-level credits are required, which include at least 36 credits of Science courses (including at least 30 credits of Biology courses).


First Year Credits
BIOL 116, 1251 6
CHEM 111 or CHEM 121 3
CHEM 113 or CHEM 123 3
ENGL 109, or two of ENGL 1122, 113, 1142, 150, 151, 153, 154, 155, or 156 6
MATH 1001 3
MATH 101 or 1031 3
PHYS 111 or 112 3
PHYS 121 or 122 3
Total credits 30


Second Year  
BIOL 200, 201 6
BIOL 202, 265 6
Two of BIOL 204, 205, 209, 210, 228 6
CHEM 203, 204; or CHEM 213, 2143 6
Electives 6
Total Credits 30


Third and Fourth Years  
BIOL 311 3
BIOL 354 3
Biology electives numbered 300 or higher 24
Science electives numbered 300 or higher 6
Other electives numbered 300 or higher 6
Electives to satisfy B.Sc. credit requirements 18
Total Credits 60
Minimum credits for degree 120

1BIOL 116, 125; CHEM 111, 113 or 121, 123; and MATH 100, 101 or 103 should be taken in the first year to ensure students have the prerequisites for second year.

2Credit will only be granted for one of ENGL 112 OR 114.

3Strongly recommended.

Biology Honours Program

The Honours in Biology is an intensive program of study based on coursework and research experience. Students who complete this program will have the ability to work independently and with a high level of competency. The course requirements are the same as in the Major in Biology program, except students must complete 6 credits of BIOL 440.

Admission Requirements

  • Fourth-year standing.
  • A minimum overall grade average of 75% over all courses completed.
  • Enrolment in BIOL 440 with a research project and research supervisor approved by the department head.

Graduation Requirements

  • Completion of the course requirements for the Major in Biology.
  • A 75% overall grade average.
  • BIOL 440, with a minimum grade of 75%. A written thesis is required, with a public presentation of the thesis in the form of a poster session or a seminar.

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