Biology Bachelor Degrees

Undergraduate students pursuing the biology major have a broad selection of courses and unique opportunities to gain experience in field and laboratory work.  Students are  encouraged to participate in the active research with faculty both on and off campus. The baccalaureate curricula are designed to prepare students for graduate work in biological sciences, admission to professional schools, or advanced specialized training.

2023-2024 Biology Degree Requirements

Introduction to Biology I + Lab (BIOL 171+171L)XX
Introduction to Biology II + Lab (BIOL 172+172L)XX
Cell and Molecular Biology + Lab (BIOL 275+275L)XX
Genetics + Lab (BIOL 375+375L)XX
Biochemistry or Molecular Biology (choose one):
Principles of Biochemistry (BIOL 402)
Molecular Biology I (BIOL 407)
Basic Biochemistry (BIOC 441)
Synthetic Biology (MBBE 451)
Morphology and Biodiversity(choose one):
Biology of the Vertebrates + Lab (BIOL 325+325L)
Biology of Invertebrates + Lab (BIOL 485+485L)
Plant Form and Function (BOT 420)
Biology of Microorganisms + Lab (MICR 351+351L)
General Entomology (PEPS 363+363L)
Physiology (choose one):
Physiology of Domestic Animals (ANSC 451)
Plant Form and Function (BOT 420)
Microbial Physiology (MICR 431)
Advance Anatomy and Physiology (PHYL 301)
Animal Physiology (ZOOL 430)
Comparative Physiology (ZOOL 432)
Biology Electives3 Credits9 Credits
Related Requirements
General Chemistry I + Lab (CHEM 161+161L)XX
General Chemistry II + Lab (CHEM 162+162L)XX
Organic Chemistry I + Lab (CHEM 272+272L)XX
Organic Chemistry II (CHEM 273) [CHEM 273L recommended]XX
Physics I + Lab (PHYS 151+151L or 170+170L)XX
Physics II + Lab (PHYS 152+152L or 272+272L)XX
Calculus I (MATH 215, 241, or 251A)XX
Calculus II (MATH 216, 242, 252A)X
Biostatistics (BIOL 220)X

Participating in Undergraduate Research

All Biology majors, regardless of what their desired career path, are encouraged to participate in undergraduate research. Engaging in research is a great way to experience science first-hand and develop a better appreciation for the field of Biology.

Individual research opportunities:

Students interested in participating in undergraduate research, known as Directed Research (BIOL 499), can count those credits towards their biology elective requirements. All students are encouraged to participate in research, even if they do not plan to pursue a Masters or PhD. The College of Natural Sciences Student Academic Success Center created a great resource to teach you all about what you need to do to find a research lab and enroll in Directed Research credits. More information about how to register for BIOL 499 can be found here.

Honors Project:

For students participating in the UH Mānoa Honors Program, their honors project credits (HON 496) can be used to fulfill Biology Elective credit requirements. Find more information about the Biology Honors Track here.

Group research opportunities:

Science Education Alliance – Phage Hunters Advancing Genomics and Evolutionary Science (SEA PHAGES) – Students complete Introductory Biology labs while learning to conduct research. This experience is perfect for any students requiring a full year of Introductory Biology Lab and desiring to engage in their first research project.

Our Project in Hawai‘i’s Intertidal (OPiHI) – ​Complete a research project in small groups—collecting data related to coastal marine ecosystem management and conservation.

Course and Program Requirement Information

Online Class Availability 

SoLS Catalog

Listing by Programs: Biology (BIOL), Botany (BOT), Microbiology (MICR), Molecular Cell Biology (MCB), Zoology (ZOOL)

Program Sheets and 4 Year plans

Student Learning Outcomes

For a BS or BA in Biology, student will be able to:
Biological Knowledge:
Synthesis and Application
1. Explain biological processes from molecules to ecosystems in an evolutionary context, including being able to use examples from Hawai‘i.
Critical Thinking and Reasoning Skills2. Demonstrate scientific literacy by critically evaluating scientific evidence, identifying gaps in knowledge, and applying strong evidence-based biological arguments to real-world problems.
3. Apply the scientific method to generate new hypotheses, formulate experimental approaches and outline potential outcomes, applying appropriate logical and quantitative methods.
Values4. Work individually and in teams in an ethical manner, and demonstrate respect for diversity of viewpoints
Communication skills5. In oral and written forms, be able to communicate biological information clearly and professionally.