Biology (BIO)

The biology major has the dual mission of introducing students to the information and technological tools of various disciplines of biology while instilling the confidence to critically assess a biological phenomenon and to design and carry out an appropriate research program.

WATCH A DEPARTMENTAL VIDEO ➤

Typical First Year Schedule (with Chemistry taken in the first year)

Fall
  • FYS 120 or WRIT 120 or Conversation Program
  • CHEM 122 or 125 or CH/BI 125*
  • MATH 119 (offered Fall only)/120/126/128 or OLE Core/Elective
  • World Language

MATH 120 can be taken in Fall, Interim, or Spring for students who are not in CH/BI. MATH 119 is only offered in Fall.

Interim
  • MATH 120 or OLE Core/Elective
Spring
  • FYS 120 or WRIT 120 or Conversation Program
  • CHEM 126 or CH/BI 227
  • BIO 150 or MATH 120/126
  • World Language

Typical First Year Schedule (with Chemistry taken in the second year)

Fall
  • FYS 120 or WRIT 120 or Conversation Program
  • BIO 150 or OLE Core/Elective
  • MATH 119 (offered Fall only)/120/126/128 or OLE Core/Elective
  • World Language

MATH 120 can be taken in Fall, Interim, or Spring for students who are not in CH/BI. MATH 119 is only offered in Fall.

Interim
  • MATH 120 or OLE Core/Elective
Spring
  • FYS 120 or WRIT 120 or Conversation Program
  • MATH 120/126 or OLE Core/Elective
  • BIO 150 or OLE Core/Elective
  • World Language
Additional Information

*Note: Students in CH/BI must take MATH 119/120 in Fall unless they have equivalent transfer credit or place into Math 126/128.

*Note: CH/BI makes use of Interim, which is incompatible with most conversation programs.

CREDIT FOR PREVIOUS COURSEWORK
  • 100-level elective credit toward the major is given for: AP score of 4 or 5, IB HL score of 5-7, or Cambridge A-level score of A (unless other credit is arranged).
  • Credit for transfer courses is done in consultation with the Registrar and the Biology Department Chair.
Placement

The first biology course in the major is BIO 150 for all students. Rare exceptions include certain transfer courses or a score of A on Cambridge A-level Biology.

For chemistry, students should follow their placement recommendation found in the Student Information System (SIS).

CONTACT INFORMATION

Chair, Department of Biology – Steve Freedberg (freedber@stolaf.edu)
Associate Professor of Biology – Jean Porterfield (porterfi@stolaf.edu)