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The Biology major and minor programs assist students in developing an understanding and knowledge of the unifying theories of biology and their interrelationships, while engaging in the process of scientific inquiry and developing important science process skills. We journey with you in providing opportunities to achieve your career interests, whether they be graduate education, teaching or the workplace. Depending on your career goals, select your Biology major with an emphasis on either a health-related profession or on one that is environmentally related.


  • Biochemist
  • Environmental Educator
  • Food Scientist
  • Health Educator
  • Microbiologist


  • Medical
  • Dental
  • Pharmacy
  • Physical Therapy
  • Veterinary




Program Learning outcomes

  1. Students will develop content knowledge, having a working understanding of basic concepts in the biological sciences. Demonstrate detailed knowledge within at least two areas of biology from among the following:
    1. Ecology/Environmental/Evolutionary Biology
    2. Molecular/Cellular Biology/ Biochemistry
    3. Physiology/Organism Biology
  2. Students will develop problem-solving skills applicable to the biological sciences.
    1. Accurately interpret data.
    2. Design an experiment to address a specific hypothesis.
    3. Critically analyze research from the original scientific literature or a professional report.
    4. Demonstrate mastery of technical skills in biological sciences.
  3. Students will apply  methods  of  laboratory/fieldwork data collection. 
    1. Effectively communicate scientific material in a written format.
    2. Effectively communicate scientific material orally.
    3. Construct graphs or tables to accurately represent scientific information.
  4. Students will explore career opportunities in the biological sciences.
    1. Appraise learning and application of knowledge in an internship experience.




To be accepted into a Biology major or minor program at Holy Family College, a student must achieve  a GPA  of 2.5 in science courses taken at Holy Family College. The status of traditional students will be reviewed at the completion of the first year of classes or when at least three science courses have been completed. Transfer students entering Holy Family College with  a GPA less than 2.5 in science courses already taken will be put on probationary status for the first year, followed by an assessment of progress. Students holding a bachelor’s degree in science transferring to Holy Family College for teacher certification must take at least one course in biology at Holy Family College. More courses may be required if previous science courses were taken more than 10 years ago.


  • A minimum of one-third of the required courses must be completed through Holy Family College.


The Biology major will be asked to do a self-assessment of the Biology Program taken at this half-way point. For each of the program goals, the student will indicate to what extent he or she has accomplished them by referring to courses or activities and provide examples of progress toward goals.


  • Internship. To prepare for a future in biology, students will complete at least two credits of a career-related internship under the guidance of Biology faculty. Students work closely with faculty to determine the best opportunity to serve their community and gain essential work experience.
  • Capstone. Building on work done in classes such as BIO 290 to prepare each student for their own unique research experience, Biology majors will conduct a research project and communicate their results as a capstone to their Biology degree. During this semester-long course, students will complete a Senior Thesis, reflecting on how they have met Biology Program goals and hone their skills in analysis and presentation of their original research. Each student will work with faculty to conduct a literature review, develop a hypothesis, create an experimental methodology, collect, interpret, and display data, formulate a conclusion that includes ideas for further study and the impact of this study on society.


All Biology majors are required to develop an academic plan in collaboration with their adviser by the end of their sophomore year. Students are required to complete a minor. Biology majors have a choice of the following minors:

  • Any Holy Family College minor offered.
  • Student-designed minor; Chemistry strongly recommended.



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BETA BETA BETA (National Biological Honor Society)


Program Curriculum

Biology Major 36 credits

The following required courses represent the spectrum of all levels of organization, as well as the major taxonomic divisions.

BIO 104 General Biology 4
BIO 290 Scientific Literacy, Technology & Research 3
BIO 490 Student Research 2
Biology electives* 27
*BIO459 must be taken as part of the biology electives 2-8


Suggested elective courses for Biology majors interested in specific career directions:

Organismal/Ecosystem  Biology Courses

BIO 203 Plant Biology 4
BIO 271 Environmental Science 3
BIO 300 General Ecology 4
BIO 306 Invertebrate Biology  4
BIO 405 Advanced Ecology 4

Human Health Courses

BIO 204 General Microbiology 4
BIO 211 Human Anatomy & Physiology 5
BIO 201 Human Heredity
or BIO 301 Genetics
BIO 406 Immunology 2

Required support courses: General Chemistry I (CHM 101) General Chemistry II, (CHM 102) and Probability and Statistics (MTH 271).


Biology Minor 24 credits

Required courses are as follows:

BIO 104 General Biology 4
Choose two courses from each: 20
  • Organismal/Ecosystem Biology Courses
  • Human Health Courses
  • Electives


Go to our course information page to browse our current course schedule.

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