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Kickstart Your Career in Medicine, Health, Research and more!

Biology Major

Division of Natural Sciences

Your future is bright with a biology degree from Bridgewater College.

Advances in cell biology, molecular genetics and ecology mean that well-prepared biologists are always in demand. Bridgewater alumni have become successful physicians, research scientists, veterinarians, medical technologists, environmental lawyers, dentists, physical therapists, genetic counselors and forestry and wildlife specialists.

You’ll take a core of biology courses covering organismal biology, genetics, molecular biology, physiology, ecology and evolution. Then you can develop depth in any area of interest through upper-level classes and research.

Perform independent research projects  during the semester or the summer to apply what you’ve learned hands-on, with guidance from faculty mentors.

Add an emphasis in wildlife biology to study in depth wildlife management and techniques, botany, zoology, and policy and ethics.

Biology Major

Consists of a minimum of 43 credit hours of courses in biology, chemistry and mathematics. Students choose one of three tracks: General Biology, Pre-Health Sciences, or Ecology. The following core courses are required for each track, consisting of 26 credits:

Introduction to the biological sciences covering biological chemistry celltissue structure and function genetics and microevolution. Intended for biology health and human sciences and environmental science majors. Three lectures and one lab per week. Corequisites
Real numbers exponents radicals and algebraic operations with polynomial and rational functions. Solving equations and graphing expressions involving polynomial and rational functions and exponential and logarithmic functions. Credit may not be received for both MATH 118 and 110. General education master core skill 2016 Summer Session I offered as an online course

Unit(s): 3
or
This course is designed to provide development of basic computational skills and introductory algebra concepts like solutions of single variable equations. It will also cover some introductory statistics and probability concepts. Problem solving will be emphasized. The course will contain at least one project that requires students to make extensive use of spreadsheet software like Excel. General Education Master Core Skill

Unit(s): 3
Biology and environmental science majors should take
Real numbers exponents radicals and algebraic operations with polynomial and rational functions. Solving equations and graphing expressions involving polynomial and rational functions and exponential and logarithmic functions. Credit may not be received for both MATH 118 and 110. General education master core skill 2016 Summer Session I offered as an online course

Unit(s): 3
. Other students should consult with their advisor about which course to take. General Education natural and physical sciences

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the biological sciences covering macroevolution (systematic taxonomy phylogenetics) ecology and biodiversity. Intended for biology and environmental science majors. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 110

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the basic physical and chemical functions necessary for animal life. Topics include basic physiological functions (membrane physiology action potential generationpropagation muscle contraction) and complex physiological activities (osmoregulation and water balance thermoregulation metabolism neurophysiology neural and endocrine control of organ systems and behavior) in both invertebrate and vertebrate animals. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 Credit may not be received for both BIOL 311 and 314

Unit(s): 4

Examination of the mechanisms of biological evolution including mutation natural selection genetic drift nonrandom mating the genetic structure of species populations the origin of new species and DNA evidence regarding relationships among species and higher taxa. Prerequisites BIOL-309
Differential and integral calculus for the student who needs a working knowledge of the subject but does not plan to pursue more advanced study in mathematics. Includes theory and application of limits derivatives and integrals. Prerequisite MATH 120 or satisfactory performance on placement test Credit may not be received for both MATH 130 and MATH 131

Unit(s): 3
and senior standing or permission of instructor

Unit(s): 3

Principles of chemistry including stoichiometry states of matter atomic and molecular structure chemical bonding periodicity energy relationships and equilibria acid-base chemistry electrochemistry kinetics solubility thermodynamics kinetic molecular theory of gases and the systematic study of families of elements. Three hours of lecture and one four-hour laboratory per week. Prerequisite MATH 110 MATH 115 or MATH 118 General Education natural and physical sciences Credit may not be received for both CHEM 125 and 161

Unit(s): 4

Principles of chemistry including stoichiometry states of matter atomic and molecular structure chemical bonding periodicity energy relationships and equilibria acid-base chemistry electrochemistry kinetics solubility thermodynamics kinetic molecular theory of gases and the systematic study of families of elements. Three hours of lecture and one four-hour lab per week. Prerequisites CHEM 161 or permission of the instructor General Education natural and physical sciences Credit may not be received for both CHEM 125 and 161

Unit(s): 4

Differential and integral calculus for the student who needs a working knowledge of the subject but does not plan to pursue more advanced study in mathematics. Includes theory and application of limits derivatives and integrals. Prerequisite MATH 120 or satisfactory performance on placement test Credit may not be received for both MATH 130 and MATH 131

Unit(s): 3

The remaining credits come from the tracks as follows—students choose one:

Track 1-General Biology

Consists of 17 to 20 credits chosen from the following:

Cell Biology/Physiology (1 course)

Introduction to the basic physical and chemical functions necessary for animal life. Topics include basic physiological functions (membrane physiology action potential generationpropagation muscle contraction) and complex physiological activities (osmoregulation and water balance thermoregulation metabolism neurophysiology neural and endocrine control of organ systems and behavior) in both invertebrate and vertebrate animals. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 Credit may not be received for both BIOL 311 and 314

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the physiology of the human body including the physiology of enzymes and membranes tissue physiology (nervous muscular) and a detailed survey of the physiology of the major organ systems. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 or BIOL 110 and 305 Credit may not be received for both BIOL 311 and 314

Unit(s): 4

The molecular basis of cell structure and function. Topics include the chemistry architecture and analysis of macromolecules overview of thermodynamics and metabolism enzymology genetic processes and controls recombinant DNA technology and cell signaling mechanisms. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and CHEM 161 or permission of instructor Credit may not be received for both BIOL-216 and BIOL-325

Unit(s): 4

Ecology (1 course)

Analysis of the distribution and abundance of organisms population growth and regulation and species interactions as well as community and ecosystem processes. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and MATH 130 2016 Summer Session I Begins 5-23-16

Unit(s): 4

Field-based study of what effects winter temperatures have on local flora and fauna and how they cope during these cold months. The potential impact of global warming on these seasonally dependent systems is addressed. Students learn how to identify plants in their winter state and make observations of what animals are active. Prerequisites BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 3

BIOL/
An exploration of how microorganisms interact with their environment and the implications of these interactions for humans. Specific topics will include antibiotic resistance biodegradation biodiversity biofuels bioremediation extreme environments geochemical cycles methods for sampling culture and analysis of environmental microorganisms microbiology of air water and soil environmental pathogens and microbiological treatment of sewage and water. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or ENVRCHEM 320 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

BIOL/
An introduction to aquatic ecosystems (lakes ponds streams and wetlands). Students will learn about the major chemical and physical processes that determine the function of freshwater systems. Students will be introduced to the major groups of aquatic organisms (algae vascular plants invertebrates and fish). Includes strong emphasis on the impacts that humans have on freshwater systems. The lab will introduce the basic skills necessary for the study and management of fresh waters. Prerequisite ENVRBIOL 301 or BIOL 350 or permission of the instructor Alternate years offered 2015-2016

Unit(s): 4

Organismal Biology (1 course)

Explores the anatomy physiology ecology and behaviors that have produced an extraordinary biodiversity of bird species. The major groups of modern birds are introduced and their origin and ecology are examined. Students learn to recognize local species in the field and examine them in the lab using the ornithology collections. Suitable for both biology majors and non-majors. Prerequisites BIOL 100 or 110 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to developmental biology with a focus on its fundamental aspects embryogenesis growth cellular differentiation and morphogenesis. The study of theory is supplemented with hands-on observations of early development in animal embryos (salamander andor mouse or other animals). We also consider the impact of recent advances in developmental biology on our society by exploring the ethical moral and religious implications as well as the legal issues that inevitably arise from work in this field. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and one additional BIOL course numbered 200 or above Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 3

An introduction to the study of amphibians and reptiles. Lectures will focus on the origin and evolution of amphibians and reptiles and on their biology ecology and conservation. Lab will emphasize taxonomy anatomy species identification and common field techniques used to study these groups. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

A comprehensive survey of mammals. Lectures will focus on phylogenetics the origin and evolution of mammals and their biology ecology and conservation. Lab will emphasize taxonomy species identification and common field techniques used to study mammals. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

A comprehensive survey of the plant kingdom that will include topics ranging from plant anatomy physiology diversity and ecology. Students interested in ecology forestry and wildlife biology will find this course particularly useful. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

Introductory survey of microbiology with an emphasis on bacteriology. The lecture component covers the structure nutrition metabolism and genetics of microbes medical microbiology diagnostic techniques microbial ecology and industrial microbiology. The lab component includes biological safety microscopy culture techniques media staining identification of unknown bacteria and an independent research project. Two lectures and two labs per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or permission of instructor BIOL 325 recommended

Unit(s): 4

Exploration of major human pathogens including viruses bacteria fungi protozoa and helminths. Topics include host-parasite interactions host defenses pathogenic mechanisms control of microorganisms diagnosis and identification of infectious agents antibiotic therapy disease transmission and epidemiology. Class activities include discussion of medical case studies literature analysis identification of unknowns and field trips. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisite BIOL-309 or permission of instructor
The molecular basis of cell structure and function. Topics include the chemistry architecture and analysis of macromolecules overview of thermodynamics and metabolism enzymology genetic processes and controls recombinant DNA technology and cell signaling mechanisms. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and CHEM 161 or permission of instructor Credit may not be received for both BIOL-216 and BIOL-325

Unit(s): 4
and
Introductory survey of microbiology with an emphasis on bacteriology. The lecture component covers the structure nutrition metabolism and genetics of microbes medical microbiology diagnostic techniques microbial ecology and industrial microbiology. The lab component includes biological safety microscopy culture techniques media staining identification of unknown bacteria and an independent research project. Two lectures and two labs per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or permission of instructor BIOL 325 recommended

Unit(s): 4
strongly recommended)

Unit(s): 4

Broad survey of the diversity and classification of vascular plants. Students will learn to recognize common and important plant families as well as learn to identify local taxa. Traditional and modern methods of taxonomy and systematics are presented. Prerequisite BIOL 111 BIOL 430 recommended Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

BIOL/
A survey of diversity of fish (with an emphasis on freshwater fish of North America). Topics will include taxonomy anatomy physiology behavior and ecology. There will be special emphasis on management of fish populations and diversity in the face of environmental threats including pollution habitat alteration overharvest and invasive species. Lab will include basic ecology and behavior but will focus heavily on common fisheries techniques. Prerequisite ENVRBIOL 301 or BIOL 350 or permission of the instructor Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the theoretical framework and the methodology of animal behavior research. Students examine the causation development current function and evolutionary history of behavior of invertebrates and vertebrates. Integrates concepts and principles from multiple disciplines to understand behaviors such as foraging and predation mating systems communication parental care social hierarchies and territoriality. Students also review the history of the field of animal behavior and the contributions that animal behavior research can make to applied disciplines such as environmental conservation biomedical research and human psychology. Prerequisites Any one of the following BIOL 311 314 or 350 PSY 210 or permission of the instructor Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

And 2 elective BIOL courses numbered 300 or higher

Track 2-Pre-Health Sciences

Consists of 18 to 20 credits chosen from the following:

Cell Biology (1 course)

The molecular basis of cell structure and function. Topics include the chemistry architecture and analysis of macromolecules overview of thermodynamics and metabolism enzymology genetic processes and controls recombinant DNA technology and cell signaling mechanisms. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and CHEM 161 or permission of instructor Credit may not be received for both BIOL-216 and BIOL-325

Unit(s): 4

Physiology (1 course)

Introduction to the basic physical and chemical functions necessary for animal life. Topics include basic physiological functions (membrane physiology action potential generationpropagation muscle contraction) and complex physiological activities (osmoregulation and water balance thermoregulation metabolism neurophysiology neural and endocrine control of organ systems and behavior) in both invertebrate and vertebrate animals. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 Credit may not be received for both BIOL 311 and 314

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the physiology of the human body including the physiology of enzymes and membranes tissue physiology (nervous muscular) and a detailed survey of the physiology of the major organ systems. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 or BIOL 110 and 305 Credit may not be received for both BIOL 311 and 314

Unit(s): 4

Ecology (1 course)

Analysis of the distribution and abundance of organisms population growth and regulation and species interactions as well as community and ecosystem processes. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and MATH 130 2016 Summer Session I Begins 5-23-16

Unit(s): 4

BIOL/
An exploration of how microorganisms interact with their environment and the implications of these interactions for humans. Specific topics will include antibiotic resistance biodegradation biodiversity biofuels bioremediation extreme environments geochemical cycles methods for sampling culture and analysis of environmental microorganisms microbiology of air water and soil environmental pathogens and microbiological treatment of sewage and water. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or ENVRCHEM 320 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

Organismal Biology (1 course)

Introduction to developmental biology with a focus on its fundamental aspects embryogenesis growth cellular differentiation and morphogenesis. The study of theory is supplemented with hands-on observations of early development in animal embryos (salamander andor mouse or other animals). We also consider the impact of recent advances in developmental biology on our society by exploring the ethical moral and religious implications as well as the legal issues that inevitably arise from work in this field. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and one additional BIOL course numbered 200 or above Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 3

A comprehensive survey of mammals. Lectures will focus on phylogenetics the origin and evolution of mammals and their biology ecology and conservation. Lab will emphasize taxonomy species identification and common field techniques used to study mammals. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

Introductory survey of microbiology with an emphasis on bacteriology. The lecture component covers the structure nutrition metabolism and genetics of microbes medical microbiology diagnostic techniques microbial ecology and industrial microbiology. The lab component includes biological safety microscopy culture techniques media staining identification of unknown bacteria and an independent research project. Two lectures and two labs per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or permission of instructor BIOL 325 recommended

Unit(s): 4

Exploration of major human pathogens including viruses bacteria fungi protozoa and helminths. Topics include host-parasite interactions host defenses pathogenic mechanisms control of microorganisms diagnosis and identification of infectious agents antibiotic therapy disease transmission and epidemiology. Class activities include discussion of medical case studies literature analysis identification of unknowns and field trips. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisite BIOL-309 or permission of instructor
The molecular basis of cell structure and function. Topics include the chemistry architecture and analysis of macromolecules overview of thermodynamics and metabolism enzymology genetic processes and controls recombinant DNA technology and cell signaling mechanisms. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and CHEM 161 or permission of instructor Credit may not be received for both BIOL-216 and BIOL-325

Unit(s): 4
and
Introductory survey of microbiology with an emphasis on bacteriology. The lecture component covers the structure nutrition metabolism and genetics of microbes medical microbiology diagnostic techniques microbial ecology and industrial microbiology. The lab component includes biological safety microscopy culture techniques media staining identification of unknown bacteria and an independent research project. Two lectures and two labs per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or permission of instructor BIOL 325 recommended

Unit(s): 4
strongly recommended)

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the theoretical framework and the methodology of animal behavior research. Students examine the causation development current function and evolutionary history of behavior of invertebrates and vertebrates. Integrates concepts and principles from multiple disciplines to understand behaviors such as foraging and predation mating systems communication parental care social hierarchies and territoriality. Students also review the history of the field of animal behavior and the contributions that animal behavior research can make to applied disciplines such as environmental conservation biomedical research and human psychology. Prerequisites Any one of the following BIOL 311 314 or 350 PSY 210 or permission of the instructor Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

Pre-Health (1 elective)

Introduction to the structure and function of the human body examining the skeletal muscular circulatory nervous digestive respiratory urinary and reproductive systems. Lecture focuses on topics of physiologyfunction histology and their relation to anatomical structure while the lab focuses on descriptive anatomy. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 110 or permission of instructor 2016 Summer Session I Begins 5-23-16

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to nutrition and digestion in domestic animals designed primarily for students in the pre-veterinary program. Topics include major nutrient classes and their functions in the body feed classification and chemical analysis feed processing and nutrient requirements. Prerequisites BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 3

Development of immune responses through humoral and cell-mediated mechanisms transplantation and tumor immunology hypersensitivity reactions autoimmunity and serology. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 325 or permission of instructor Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

Comparative study of the major organ systems in vertebrate animals. Lectures examine topics such as the origin and adaptive evolution of vertebrate anatomy and the systematic relationships between vertebrate groups. The lab provides a detailed examination of vertebrate anatomy. Two lectures and two labs per week. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

BIOL/
Introduction to the major biomolecular compound classes including carbohydrates proteins lipids and nucleic acids along with a survey of enzyme kinetics and the overall regulation of key metabolic pathways. Three lectures per week. Prerequisite
Overview of the functional groups and reactivity of organic molecules using biological examples. Three hours of lecture and one two-hour lab per week. Prerequisites CHEM 125 or 162 Credit may not be received for both CHEM 250 and 305

Unit(s): 4
or CHEM-306310

Unit(s): 3

-or-
BIOL/
Introduction to the major biomolecular compound classes including carbohydrates proteins lipids and nucleic acids along with a survey of enzyme kinetics and the overall regulation of key metabolic pathways. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisite
Overview of the functional groups and reactivity of organic molecules using biological examples. Three hours of lecture and one two-hour lab per week. Prerequisites CHEM 125 or 162 Credit may not be received for both CHEM 250 and 305

Unit(s): 4
or CHEM-306310

Unit(s): 4

BIOL/
A continuation of the topics covered in Biochemistry I with special attention paid to the classic chemical reactions at work in biological systems. The intersection of biochemical principles with such applications as drug discovery and computational modeling will be emphasized as a mechanism for understanding the fundamental relationship between structure and function. Three lectures per week. Prerequisite BIOLCHEM-355 or 356

Unit(s): 3

Track 3-Ecology

Consists of 17 to 20 credits chosen from the following:

Cell Biology/Physiology (1 course)

Introduction to the basic physical and chemical functions necessary for animal life. Topics include basic physiological functions (membrane physiology action potential generationpropagation muscle contraction) and complex physiological activities (osmoregulation and water balance thermoregulation metabolism neurophysiology neural and endocrine control of organ systems and behavior) in both invertebrate and vertebrate animals. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 Credit may not be received for both BIOL 311 and 314

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the physiology of the human body including the physiology of enzymes and membranes tissue physiology (nervous muscular) and a detailed survey of the physiology of the major organ systems. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 or BIOL 110 and 305 Credit may not be received for both BIOL 311 and 314

Unit(s): 4

The molecular basis of cell structure and function. Topics include the chemistry architecture and analysis of macromolecules overview of thermodynamics and metabolism enzymology genetic processes and controls recombinant DNA technology and cell signaling mechanisms. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and CHEM 161 or permission of instructor Credit may not be received for both BIOL-216 and BIOL-325

Unit(s): 4

Ecology (1 course)

Analysis of the distribution and abundance of organisms population growth and regulation and species interactions as well as community and ecosystem processes. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and MATH 130 2016 Summer Session I Begins 5-23-16

Unit(s): 4

Organismal Biology (1 course)

Explores the anatomy physiology ecology and behaviors that have produced an extraordinary biodiversity of bird species. The major groups of modern birds are introduced and their origin and ecology are examined. Students learn to recognize local species in the field and examine them in the lab using the ornithology collections. Suitable for both biology majors and non-majors. Prerequisites BIOL 100 or 110 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

An introduction to the study of amphibians and reptiles. Lectures will focus on the origin and evolution of amphibians and reptiles and on their biology ecology and conservation. Lab will emphasize taxonomy anatomy species identification and common field techniques used to study these groups. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

A comprehensive survey of mammals. Lectures will focus on phylogenetics the origin and evolution of mammals and their biology ecology and conservation. Lab will emphasize taxonomy species identification and common field techniques used to study mammals. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

A comprehensive survey of the plant kingdom that will include topics ranging from plant anatomy physiology diversity and ecology. Students interested in ecology forestry and wildlife biology will find this course particularly useful. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

Introductory survey of microbiology with an emphasis on bacteriology. The lecture component covers the structure nutrition metabolism and genetics of microbes medical microbiology diagnostic techniques microbial ecology and industrial microbiology. The lab component includes biological safety microscopy culture techniques media staining identification of unknown bacteria and an independent research project. Two lectures and two labs per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or permission of instructor BIOL 325 recommended

Unit(s): 4

Exploration of major human pathogens including viruses bacteria fungi protozoa and helminths. Topics include host-parasite interactions host defenses pathogenic mechanisms control of microorganisms diagnosis and identification of infectious agents antibiotic therapy disease transmission and epidemiology. Class activities include discussion of medical case studies literature analysis identification of unknowns and field trips. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisite BIOL-309 or permission of instructor
The molecular basis of cell structure and function. Topics include the chemistry architecture and analysis of macromolecules overview of thermodynamics and metabolism enzymology genetic processes and controls recombinant DNA technology and cell signaling mechanisms. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and CHEM 161 or permission of instructor Credit may not be received for both BIOL-216 and BIOL-325

Unit(s): 4
and
Introductory survey of microbiology with an emphasis on bacteriology. The lecture component covers the structure nutrition metabolism and genetics of microbes medical microbiology diagnostic techniques microbial ecology and industrial microbiology. The lab component includes biological safety microscopy culture techniques media staining identification of unknown bacteria and an independent research project. Two lectures and two labs per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or permission of instructor BIOL 325 recommended

Unit(s): 4
strongly recommended)

Unit(s): 4

Broad survey of the diversity and classification of vascular plants. Students will learn to recognize common and important plant families as well as learn to identify local taxa. Traditional and modern methods of taxonomy and systematics are presented. Prerequisite BIOL 111 BIOL 430 recommended Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

BIOL/
A survey of diversity of fish (with an emphasis on freshwater fish of North America). Topics will include taxonomy anatomy physiology behavior and ecology. There will be special emphasis on management of fish populations and diversity in the face of environmental threats including pollution habitat alteration overharvest and invasive species. Lab will include basic ecology and behavior but will focus heavily on common fisheries techniques. Prerequisite ENVRBIOL 301 or BIOL 350 or permission of the instructor Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the theoretical framework and the methodology of animal behavior research. Students examine the causation development current function and evolutionary history of behavior of invertebrates and vertebrates. Integrates concepts and principles from multiple disciplines to understand behaviors such as foraging and predation mating systems communication parental care social hierarchies and territoriality. Students also review the history of the field of animal behavior and the contributions that animal behavior research can make to applied disciplines such as environmental conservation biomedical research and human psychology. Prerequisites Any one of the following BIOL 311 314 or 350 PSY 210 or permission of the instructor Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

Ecology and Organismal Biology (1 course)

Explores the anatomy physiology ecology and behaviors that have produced an extraordinary biodiversity of bird species. The major groups of modern birds are introduced and their origin and ecology are examined. Students learn to recognize local species in the field and examine them in the lab using the ornithology collections. Suitable for both biology majors and non-majors. Prerequisites BIOL 100 or 110 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to developmental biology with a focus on its fundamental aspects embryogenesis growth cellular differentiation and morphogenesis. The study of theory is supplemented with hands-on observations of early development in animal embryos (salamander andor mouse or other animals). We also consider the impact of recent advances in developmental biology on our society by exploring the ethical moral and religious implications as well as the legal issues that inevitably arise from work in this field. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and one additional BIOL course numbered 200 or above Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 3

An introduction to the study of amphibians and reptiles. Lectures will focus on the origin and evolution of amphibians and reptiles and on their biology ecology and conservation. Lab will emphasize taxonomy anatomy species identification and common field techniques used to study these groups. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

A comprehensive survey of mammals. Lectures will focus on phylogenetics the origin and evolution of mammals and their biology ecology and conservation. Lab will emphasize taxonomy species identification and common field techniques used to study mammals. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

A comprehensive survey of the plant kingdom that will include topics ranging from plant anatomy physiology diversity and ecology. Students interested in ecology forestry and wildlife biology will find this course particularly useful. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

Field-based study of what effects winter temperatures have on local flora and fauna and how they cope during these cold months. The potential impact of global warming on these seasonally dependent systems is addressed. Students learn how to identify plants in their winter state and make observations of what animals are active. Prerequisites BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 3

Introductory survey of microbiology with an emphasis on bacteriology. The lecture component covers the structure nutrition metabolism and genetics of microbes medical microbiology diagnostic techniques microbial ecology and industrial microbiology. The lab component includes biological safety microscopy culture techniques media staining identification of unknown bacteria and an independent research project. Two lectures and two labs per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or permission of instructor BIOL 325 recommended

Unit(s): 4

BIOL/
An exploration of how microorganisms interact with their environment and the implications of these interactions for humans. Specific topics will include antibiotic resistance biodegradation biodiversity biofuels bioremediation extreme environments geochemical cycles methods for sampling culture and analysis of environmental microorganisms microbiology of air water and soil environmental pathogens and microbiological treatment of sewage and water. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or ENVRCHEM 320 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

Exploration of major human pathogens including viruses bacteria fungi protozoa and helminths. Topics include host-parasite interactions host defenses pathogenic mechanisms control of microorganisms diagnosis and identification of infectious agents antibiotic therapy disease transmission and epidemiology. Class activities include discussion of medical case studies literature analysis identification of unknowns and field trips. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisite BIOL-309 or permission of instructor
The molecular basis of cell structure and function. Topics include the chemistry architecture and analysis of macromolecules overview of thermodynamics and metabolism enzymology genetic processes and controls recombinant DNA technology and cell signaling mechanisms. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and CHEM 161 or permission of instructor Credit may not be received for both BIOL-216 and BIOL-325

Unit(s): 4
and
Introductory survey of microbiology with an emphasis on bacteriology. The lecture component covers the structure nutrition metabolism and genetics of microbes medical microbiology diagnostic techniques microbial ecology and industrial microbiology. The lab component includes biological safety microscopy culture techniques media staining identification of unknown bacteria and an independent research project. Two lectures and two labs per week. Prerequisites BIOL 309 or permission of instructor BIOL 325 recommended

Unit(s): 4
strongly recommended)

Unit(s): 4

Broad survey of the diversity and classification of vascular plants. Students will learn to recognize common and important plant families as well as learn to identify local taxa. Traditional and modern methods of taxonomy and systematics are presented. Prerequisite BIOL 111 BIOL 430 recommended Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

BIOL/
A survey of diversity of fish (with an emphasis on freshwater fish of North America). Topics will include taxonomy anatomy physiology behavior and ecology. There will be special emphasis on management of fish populations and diversity in the face of environmental threats including pollution habitat alteration overharvest and invasive species. Lab will include basic ecology and behavior but will focus heavily on common fisheries techniques. Prerequisite ENVRBIOL 301 or BIOL 350 or permission of the instructor Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

BIOL/
An introduction to aquatic ecosystems (lakes ponds streams and wetlands). Students will learn about the major chemical and physical processes that determine the function of freshwater systems. Students will be introduced to the major groups of aquatic organisms (algae vascular plants invertebrates and fish). Includes strong emphasis on the impacts that humans have on freshwater systems. The lab will introduce the basic skills necessary for the study and management of fresh waters. Prerequisite ENVRBIOL 301 or BIOL 350 or permission of the instructor Alternate years offered 2015-2016

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the theoretical framework and the methodology of animal behavior research. Students examine the causation development current function and evolutionary history of behavior of invertebrates and vertebrates. Integrates concepts and principles from multiple disciplines to understand behaviors such as foraging and predation mating systems communication parental care social hierarchies and territoriality. Students also review the history of the field of animal behavior and the contributions that animal behavior research can make to applied disciplines such as environmental conservation biomedical research and human psychology. Prerequisites Any one of the following BIOL 311 314 or 350 PSY 210 or permission of the instructor Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

And 1 Environmental Science course numbered 300 or higher, listed as BIOL/ENVR (3-4 credits)

For the elective BIOL or ENVR courses in the tracks, only 3 credits may be chosen from BIOL or ENVR 460, 490, 491 or 499, and Internship (BIOL or ENVR 480) cannot be used to meet this requirement.

Wildlife Biology Emphasis

The Wildlife Biology emphasis allows students wanting the breadth of the biology or environmental science major to also focus in areas of wildlife biology and management. In this program, students will take 11–17 additional credits on top of their major to specialize in wildlife. The program offers directed study in wildlife management and techniques, botany, zoology, and policy and ethics. This program along with the biology or environmental science major and the general education requirements will support students wishing to pursue careers with state and federal agencies, graduate degree programs in wildlife biology, as well as those who wish to pursue Wildlife Biologist Certification through the Wildlife Society.

Consists of 23 credits. Biology majors may overlap two courses with their major electives and Environmental Science majors may overlap three courses with their major electives. The requirements are as follows:

Wildlife Management and Techniques
Environmental Science majors take one course; Biology majors take two courses:

Ecology and management of forest lands and their animal populations including principles and policy in support of diverse goals such as preservation of wilderness management for harvest parks and recreation and habitat recovery. Effects of geology soils water and climate on habitat quality and management implications. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites PDP 150 or 350 ENG 110 and BIOL 111 or permission of instructor Alternate years offered 2016-2017 General education Writing Intensive

Unit(s): 4

ENVR/
Field-based course providing a broad overview of techniques and concepts involved in field biology (especially ecology) including basic scientific method and a variety of sampling techniques. Course content also has a strong emphasis on basic natural history as students learn about and experience a wide variety of organisms (e.g. plant fungi insects fish amphibians and mammals) ecosystems (e.g. forests grasslands wetlands ponds and streams) and ecological interactions. Students will also discuss techniques for interpretingteaching these biological concepts to others. Prerequisites BIOL 111 or permission of instructor 2016 Summer Session I Begins 5-23-16 Hybrid Online Course Meets on Campus June 13-17 2016

Unit(s): 4

ENVR/
Survey of the methods used by the public and private sectors to manage the environment and natural resources. Primary emphasis on restoration ecology and conservation biology. Other topics addressed include environmental engineering (e.g. green chemistry and design of pollution control devices) economic considerations in conservation (e.g. conservation land easements and ecotourism) and government regulation. The lab provides students with experience applying standard methods of monitoring biological resources. The lab also provides an opportunity for students to hear talks from environmental experts and to travel to local sites where management activities are occurring. Prerequisites BIOL 111 or permission of instructor Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

Molecules, Anatomy and Physiology
Environmental Science majors take one course; Biology majors take no courses:

Introduction to both classical Mendelian inheritance and molecular genetics with one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 or permission of instructor CHEM 161 recommended
Application of genetics to the human population including familial genetics cytogenetics population genetics medical genetics genetic counseling pedigree analysis the human genome bioinformatics DNA fingerprinting gene therapy and therapeutic cloning. The latest advances in this dynamic field are explored. Prerequisites BIOL 100 101 or 110 Alternate years offered 2016-2017 Credit may not be received for both BIOL 216 and 309 or 325

Unit(s): 3
may not be substituted for BIOL-309

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the basic physical and chemical functions necessary for animal life. Topics include basic physiological functions (membrane physiology action potential generationpropagation muscle contraction) and complex physiological activities (osmoregulation and water balance thermoregulation metabolism neurophysiology neural and endocrine control of organ systems and behavior) in both invertebrate and vertebrate animals. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 Credit may not be received for both BIOL 311 and 314

Unit(s): 4

The molecular basis of cell structure and function. Topics include the chemistry architecture and analysis of macromolecules overview of thermodynamics and metabolism enzymology genetic processes and controls recombinant DNA technology and cell signaling mechanisms. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisites BIOL 111 and CHEM 161 or permission of instructor Credit may not be received for both BIOL-216 and BIOL-325

Unit(s): 4

Comparative study of the major organ systems in vertebrate animals. Lectures examine topics such as the origin and adaptive evolution of vertebrate anatomy and the systematic relationships between vertebrate groups. The lab provides a detailed examination of vertebrate anatomy. Two lectures and two labs per week. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

Botany
Environmental Science and Biology majors take one course:

Survey of the vascular flora of the Shenandoah Valley and surrounding mountain areas. Field-based course that introduces students to the identification of plants in the field of their ecology. Plant collection and specimen preservation are also included. Prerequisites BIOL 111 2014 Summer Session I Begins 5-27-14

Unit(s): 4

A comprehensive survey of the plant kingdom that will include topics ranging from plant anatomy physiology diversity and ecology. Students interested in ecology forestry and wildlife biology will find this course particularly useful. Three lectures and one lab per week. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

Broad survey of the diversity and classification of vascular plants. Students will learn to recognize common and important plant families as well as learn to identify local taxa. Traditional and modern methods of taxonomy and systematics are presented. Prerequisite BIOL 111 BIOL 430 recommended Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

Zoology/Organisms
Environmental Science and Biology majors take two courses:

Explores the anatomy physiology ecology and behaviors that have produced an extraordinary biodiversity of bird species. The major groups of modern birds are introduced and their origin and ecology are examined. Students learn to recognize local species in the field and examine them in the lab using the ornithology collections. Suitable for both biology majors and non-majors. Prerequisites BIOL 100 or 110 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

An introduction to the study of amphibians and reptiles. Lectures will focus on the origin and evolution of amphibians and reptiles and on their biology ecology and conservation. Lab will emphasize taxonomy anatomy species identification and common field techniques used to study these groups. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

A comprehensive survey of mammals. Lectures will focus on phylogenetics the origin and evolution of mammals and their biology ecology and conservation. Lab will emphasize taxonomy species identification and common field techniques used to study mammals. Prerequisite BIOL 111 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

ENVR/
Survey of diversity of fish (with an emphasis on freshwater fish of North America). Topics include taxonomy anatomy physiology behavior and ecology. Special emphasis on management of fish populations and diversity in the face of environmental threats including pollution habitat alteration overharvest and invasive species. Lab includes basic ecology and behavior but focuses heavily on common fisheries techniques. Prerequisites BIOLENVR 301 or BIOL 350 or permission of instructor Alternate years offered 2016-2017

Unit(s): 4

Introduction to the theoretical framework and the methodology of animal behavior research. Students examine the causation development current function and evolutionary history of behavior of invertebrates and vertebrates. Integrates concepts and principles from multiple disciplines to understand behaviors such as foraging and predation mating systems communication parental care social hierarchies and territoriality. Students also review the history of the field of animal behavior and the contributions that animal behavior research can make to applied disciplines such as environmental conservation biomedical research and human psychology. Prerequisites Any one of the following BIOL 311 314 or 350 PSY 210 or permission of the instructor Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 4

Policy/Ethics
Environmental Science and Biology majors take one course:

Confronts a number of modern scientific and ethical problems including abortion genetic testing genetically modified plants and animals stem cells gene therapy research on humans and physician-assisted suicide. Biology and biotechnology often confound our notions of right and wrong and what ethical behavior is. Prerequisites PDP 150 or PDP 350 and ENG 110 General Education philosophy or religion and Ethical Reasoning Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 3

Pressing issues confronting professionals in a technological era. Utilizing the insights of philosophical and religious ethics the course examines the responsibilities of the professional person in business medicine law education the ministry and other fields. Problems considered include confidentiality accountability whistleblowing governmental regulation and ethical codes. Prerequisites PDP 150 or PDP 350 ENG 110 and junior or senior standing General Education philosophy or religion Ethical Reasoning Course

Unit(s): 3

Examines the historical development of environmental ethics in the U.S. major ethical approaches to contemporary environmental issues and the application of those theories to particular topics such as ecojustice biodiversity and global warming. Readings will be drawn from a wide range of sources from ancient scripture to current news reports. Prerequisites PDP 150 or PDP 350 and ENG 110 General Education philosophy or religion Ethical Reasoning & Writing Intensive

Unit(s): 3

This course will explore the ethical implications of wildlife management research and stewardship by applying ethical frameworks to issues surrounding wildlife. Possible topics include reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone and subsequent delisting predator control supplemental feeding loggingwildlife conflicts hunting culture etc. Prerequisites PDP 150 or PDP 350 ENG 110 and BIOL 100 or 110 Ethical Reasoning

Unit(s): 3

This course will provide an overview of federal and state laws that are aimed at the conservation of natural resources andor protection of environmental quality. Major laws that will be covered include the National Environmental Protection Act Clean Air Act Clean Water Act the Endangered Species Act and others. Speakers from natural resourceenvironmental agencies such as the Va. Department of Environmental Quality Va. Department of Game and Inland Fisheries and U.S. Forest Service will provide practical insights into the application and implementation of environmental policy. Prerequisites BIOL 100 101 or 110 Alternate years offered 2017-2018

Unit(s): 3

Activities and Clubs

Pre-Med Society

As a Pre-Med Society member, you’ll have access to information and opportunities to explore a variety of medical careers. Pursue your interest in fields such as medicine, nursing, dentistry, optometry, veterinary medicine, clinical lab sciences, dental hygiene, and physical and occupational therapy.

For more information about joining the Pre-Med Society, contact:

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Beta Beta Beta (Tri-Beta) National Biological Honor Society

Network with your fellow students and faculty in the national honor society for biology.

Careers and Graduate Schools

What can you do with your biology degree?

Like our recent graduates, you might enter graduate or professional schools such as:

Biology/Biomedical Sciences –

  • Albert Einstein College of Medicine
  • Auburn University
  • Clemson University
  • George Mason University
  • James Madison University
  • Ohio State University
  • Tennessee Tech
  • West Virginia University

Nursing –

  • Johns Hopkins University
  • Shenandoah University
  • Virginia Commonwealth University

Optometry –

  • Pennsylvania School of Optometry

Pharmacy –

  • Virginia Commonwealth University

Physician Assistant –

  • Jefferson College of Health Sciences

Veterinary Science –

  • Colorado State University
  • North Carolina State University
  • Ohio State University
  • Ross University
  • University of Georgia
  • University of Tennessee
  • Virginia Tech

Or pursue a career in:

  • Environmental Quality and Consulting
  • Government
  • Hospital Administration
  • Industry
  • Laboratory Research
  • Marine Biology
  • Medicine and Health
  • Pharmacy
  • Quality Assurance and Control
  • Teaching
  • Veterinary Medicine

Learn more about career paths, employment and advancement in the field of biology from the American Institute of Biological Sciences.

The Smithsonian-Mason Semester for Conservation Studies

Bridgewater College is a member institution of the Smithsonian-Mason Semester which is run by George Mason University out of the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) in Front Royal, Va. In this program, students live on the SCBI campus (a world-class conservation research facility) and learn about the theory and application of conservation biology (including the social, political and economic dimensions). Students participate in one of two 16 credit hour programs: Ecology for Effective Conservation Practices or Applied Conservation Strategies (for any student interested in conservation). Interested students should visit the program’s website (smconservation.gmu.edu/programs/undergraduate) and contact the biology department or the coordinator of international education. Both programs are appropriate for juniors and seniors. There are no specific prerequisite classes for the Applied Conservation Strategies. That program is open to all majors. The Ecology for Effective Conservation Practices semester has Ecology (BIOL-350) as a prerequisite.

Students are charged Bridgewater’s standard tuition, fees, room and meals for the consortium semester and institutional financial aid from BC is limited to $7,000 for the semester.

Visit the Department Homepage

Questions? Contact us!

Dr. Robyn Puffenbarger, Department Chair
540-828-5713
rpuffenb@bridgewater.edu