Track Descriptions

General Biology Track Description

Wet labThe biology discipline offers two tracks of coursework:

General biology (or "non-majors") courses are intended for anyone interested in the field of biology, and fulfill a science requirement for non-science majors. They are taught either as "core" courses (called "Survey of Biology"), which cover the broadest spectrum of topics and concepts, or through term-long special emphasis courses, which teach the theme of the group in the context of a specialized area of biology. A variety of emphasis courses are available each quarter, in areas such as marine biology, birds, botany, genetics, and zoology. 

General biology courses are placed into BI101, BI102, and BI103 groups. The theme and general concepts of each group are different in their coverage of fundamental biological principles:

  • BI101 courses emphasize cellular processes
  • BI102 courses deal with systems within living organisms
  • BI103 courses address the concepts of evolution, ecology, and the diversity of life

(Note: General biology course numbers have suffixes to indicate different special emphasis topics; BI101A, BI101B, BI101C, BI101D, and so on, are considered equivalent. Because of this, only one each of the BI101s, BI102s, and BI103s can be used toward degree requirements for science credits.) 

If you have any questions, contact the science office (from our science office page) or the instructors (from our faculty page). We are available to discuss your academic needs with you at any time.