Dr. Joanna B. Mott, Department Head
Phone: (540) 568-6225
Dr. Kyle Seifert, Undergraduate Coordinator
Location: Bioscience Building, Room 2001C
M. Gabriele, N. Garrison, H. Griscom, C. Lantz, C. McMullen, J. Monroe, J. Mott, M. Renfroe, C. Rose, K. Seifert, B. Wiggins, R. Wunderlich, G. Wyngaard
S. Babcock, M. Bechtel, T. Bloss, J. Brown, C. Cleland, D. Cocking, S. Cresawn, J. Daniel, K. Gobetz, S. Halsell, J. Herrick,
C. May, T. Rife, K. Slekar
I. Cooper, K. Cresawn, R. Enke, J. Harsh, K. Kubow, P. Ludwig, D. McLeod, M. Parker, M. Steffen, D. Strong, P. Vasudevan, B. Velayudhan, G. Vidal, M. Walker, L. Wurch
Visiting Assistant Professor
B. Cage, E. Doyle, O. Hyman, T. Hynd, P. Kilkenny, A. Pesce
The Department of Biology holds as its primary core value a commitment to providing superlative teaching for students. To accomplish this mission, we will create an environment for learning that will include opportunities for undergraduate research, a broadly based academic program, a supportive, diverse and collaborative faculty, an understanding of the process of science and a recognition of the importance of community outreach and involvement.
Career Opportunities and Advanced Fields of Study
- Aquatic Science
- Clinical Laboratory Sciences
- Ecology and Environmental Science
- Forensic Science
- Genetic Counseling
- Graduate School in the Biological Sciences
- Landscape Architecture
- Occupational Therapy
- Physical Therapy
- Physician Assistant
- Research Assistant
- Scientific Writing
- Secondary Education
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
- Veterinary Medicine
Students interested in pursuing any of these career opportunities should contact the biology office. An appropriate adviser will be assigned for mentoring and course selection.
Co-curricular Activities and Organizations
Biology majors participate in activities such as:
- Weekly departmental seminars
- Tri-Beta, a national biology society
- Pre-professional health clubs and honor society
- EARTH, an environmental action club
- Summer and academic-year research opportunities
- Summer courses at biological field stations
- Internships with various organizations
- Aiding in teaching as student assistants
- Presenting papers at meetings
- Volunteering at Rockingham Memorial Hospital and with the rescue squad
To be used as prerequisites for biology courses, grades of “C-” or higher should be earned in the following: BIO 140 , BIO 150 , BIO 240 , BIO 250 , CHEM 131 , CHEM 131L , and CHEM 132 . It is the student’s responsibility to provide evidence to demonstrate that the subject content of the sequence taken is the same as BIO 140 and BIO 150 combined. In order for BIO 270 and BIO 290 credit to be transferred, both semesters of an Anatomy and Physiology course (A&P I and A&P II) must be completed at the “C” or higher level. A single semester of either of these sequences transfers as BIO 000. Practical hands-on experience in the field and/or laboratory is important content of laboratory based courses.
Transfer credit for courses including laboratories will only be awarded for those having skill and application content comparable to that of JMU courses. Upper division biology credits applicable toward the major or minor are transferred as specific courses or as BIO 300 or BIO 426 . Credits not applicable toward the major or minor, but applicable toward the 120 hour degree requirement, are transferred as BIO 000. A maximum of eight credit hours of first year (100) level BIO courses may be applied to the biology major or minor requirements.
Students who declared a major in biology before fall 2016 should consult with their adviser about course requirements.
Degree and Major Requirements
The department offers a four-year B.S. degree program for a major in biology and for a major in biology qualifying for the Secondary Collegiate Professional License. Requirements for the B.A. degree can be met by adding the completion of an intermediate level foreign language and three credit hours in philosophy. Students may not receive dual credit toward the biology major for 300- and 400-level BIO courses that are applied toward the biotechnology major.
Biology majors must complete 40 credit hours of biology courses including 16 credit hours at the 300 and 400 level. Specific requirements include four core courses (BIO 140 , BIO 150 , BIO 240 and BIO 250 ), at least two upper-division laboratory courses and one course from a list of courses with an emphasis on organismal diversity. In addition, biology majors must complete a set of cognate courses in chemistry, mathematics, statistics and physics that are listed below. Students are encouraged to participate in independent research with a faculty mentor. Credits earned doing research will count toward the biology major but some restrictions apply.
When requested, senior biology majors are expected to participate in program assessment test activities as a graduation requirement. Assessment information helps the department modify the curriculum to meet student needs.