BS Biology Degree Requirements | School of Biological Sciences | Georgia Institute of Technology | Atlanta, GA | Georgia Institute of Technology (2024)

A Bachelor of Science in Biology requires a minimum of 122 credit hours. All courses must be taken for a letter grade, except for Free Electives which can include pass/fail courses. All letter grades of D and higher are accepted in the Biology degree.Always refer to theUndergraduate Handbookspecific to your catalog year (the year you entered the Biology major) for information, rules, and regulations specific to your Biology degree requirements.

Quick Links:
  • Biology degreeUndergraduate Handbook
  • Biology degree requirements
  • Introductory and Core courses
  • Quantitative Biology Requirement
  • Senior Research Requirement
  • Biology Electives
  • Required Non-Biology courses
    • *New US and Georgia Constitution and History Requirements (beginning May 2023)*
  • Free Electives
  • Biology degree 4-year plan
  • Biology degree checklist

BS Biology 2022-2023 degree requirements

For degree requirements prior to the current year, please refer to the Biology Undergraduate Handbook for your specific catalog year.

Required Biology Introductory and Core Courses

BIOS 1207 Majors Biological Principles or1107 Biological Principles (credit also accepted for BIOS 1107)
BIOS 1207L Biological Principles Project Lab or1107L Biological Principles Lab (credit also accepted for BIOS 1107L)
BIOS 1208 Majors Organismal Biology or1108 Organismal Biology (credit also accepted for BIOS 1108)
BIOS 1208L Organismal Biology Project Lab or1108L Organismal Biology Lab (credit also accepted for BIOS 1108L)
BIOS 2300 or 2310 Ecology or Problem-Based Ecology
BIOS 2600 or 2610 Genetics or Integrative Genetics
BIOS 3450 Cell and Molecular Biology
BIOS 3600 Evolutionary Biology
BIOS 4460 Communicating Biological Research
Two of these three lab categories: Ecology or Problem-Based Ecology Lab (BIOS 2301 or 2311); Genetics or Integrative Genetics Lab (BIOS 2601 or 2611); Cell and Molecular Biology Lab (BIOS 3451). Each lab should be taken concurrently with the associated lecture course when possible. If you choose to take all three lab courses, then the 3000-level course may count toward Biology Electives instead of the Core Lab requirement.

Quantitative Biology Requirement

One of the following:
BIOS 3400 Mathematical Models in Biology
BIOS 4150 Genomics & Applied Bioinformatics
BIOS 4401 Experimental Design & Statistical Methods
If you choose to take more than one of the courses above, then the othercourse(s) may be used to fulfill Biology Elective credits instead of the Quantitative Biology requirement

Senior Research Experience Requirement

One of the following:
BIOS 4590 Research Project Lab
BIOS 4690 Independent Research Project

More information on how and when to completethe Senior Research Experience

Biology Electives

Students complete 21 credits of Biology electives defined as follows: 12 "depth" credit hours must be courses with a “BIOS” prefix, excluding BIOS 4694-BIOS 4699. Biology Elective courses that are cross-listed with other departments are included in these 12 depth credit hours. The remaining 9 "breadth" credit hours can be selected from: other BIOS 3000-level and higher courses, BIOS 4695, BIOS 4697, BIOS 4699, 3000 or 4000-level VIP courses with a Biological Sciences instructor, and a list of approved courses offered in the other departments.

  • 12 credits of Biology Depth Electives:Depth electives allow you to gain deeper understanding in specific biological areas of your choice. Depth electives must have a "BIOS" prefix (or be cross-listed with a BIOSprefix). Biologyinternships,teaching, orresearch(BIOS4695, 4697, 4699) cannot count toward Depth electives.Alist of Biology Depth elective courses is available at the Courses and Syllabi page.
  • 9 credits of Biology Breadth Electives:Breadth electives provide the opportunity to add a wider base of experience and knowledge to your Biology degree. Breadth electives can be selected from:
    • Biology Depth Electives (most BIOS3000 and 4000 levelcourses)
    • Biologyinternships,teaching, orresearch(BIOL 4695, 4697, 4699) or 3000 or 4000-levelVIP coursestaught by a faculty member from the School of Biological Sciences.A maximum of 6 credits can be applied to the 9 breadth credits from each of BIOS4695, 4697, 4699, or 3000 or 4000-level VIP courses.​Any additional credits of BIOS 4695, 4697, 4699, or VIP coursework can be applied to Free Electives
    • A list ofapproved courses offered in other Schools (see below). ForBusiness Optionstudents, a maximum of 6 credits of Business Option electives can be applied to the 9 breadth credits. ForResearch Optionstudents, a maximum of 2 credits ofLMC4701 and 4702 can be applied to the 9 breadth credits.
Required Non-Biology Science Courses

CHEM1211KChemical Principles I
CHEM1212KChemical Principles II
CHEM 2311 Organic Chem I, Principles (sections P and higher)
CHEM 2312 Organic Chem II
CHEM 2380 Synthesis Lab
MATH 1551 Differential Calculus
MATH 1553 Linear Algebra
MATH 1552 Integral Calculus
PHYS 2211 Intro Physics I for Life Sciences (section LS or C)
PHYS 2212 Intro Physics II for Life Sciences (section LS or C)

Computing Requirement: Students must complete CS 1301, CS 1315, CS 1371, or CS 13X1 (transfer course).

Wellness Requirement: Georgia Tech requires students to complete APPH 1040,APPH 1050, or APPH 1060.

Communication Requirement:All students are required to take ENGL 1101* and 1102*.

Humanities Electives:All students are required to take a total of 6 hours of Humanities electives; taking 3000-level or higher is recommended to help fulfill the 39 hour rule+.

Social Sciences Electives and Political Science & US History for Students in Catalog Years starting Summer 2024 and Later: Students starting at Georgia Tech in Summer 2024 or later (or any student updating their Catalog year to 2024-2025 or later) are required to take a total of 9 hours of Social Sciences and . The Political Science & US History requirement also counts toward the Georgia Legislative Requirements (GLRs – see below) and is fulfilled by taking one of the following five courses: HIST 2111, HIST 2212, INTA 1200, POL 1101, or PUBP 3000. Courses may be completed at GT or via AP/IB/Transfer credit.

Social Sciences Electivesfor Students in Catalog Years Prior to Summer 2024: Students starting at Tech prior to Summer 2024 are required to take a total of 12 hours of Social Sciences, which must include at least one of the following five courses to count toward the Georgia Legislative Requirements (GLRs – see below): HIST 2111, HIST 2212, INTA 1200, POL 1101, or PUBP 3000. Courses may be completed at GT or via AP/IB/Transfer credit.

Georgia Legislative Requirements/US and Georgia Constitution and History Requirements: See OUE's information on the GLR requirement for more information. For students who first entered GT in May 2023 or later, all students must satisfy four legislative requirements to graduate. For students starting at Georgia Tech Requirements must be fulfilled before completing 90 or more credit hours:

  1. United States History: fulfilled by HIST 2111, HIST 2112, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit (see the transfer equivalency catalog to confirm), or passing the United States History Module Examination. Note that the examination does not carry any academic credit.
  2. Georgia History: fulfilled byHIST 2111, HIST 2112, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit (see the transfer equivalency catalog to confirm), or passing the Georgia History Module Examination. Note that the examination does not carry any academic credit.
  3. United States Constitution: fulfilled byINTA 1200, POL 1101, PUBP 3000, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit (see the transfer equivalency catalog to confirm), or passing the United States Constitution Module Examination. Note that the examination does not carry any academic credit.
  4. Georgia Constitution: fulfilled byINTA 1200, POL 1101, PUBP 3000, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit (see the transfer equivalency catalog to confirm), or passing the Georgia Constitution Module Examination. Note that the examination does not carry any academic credit.

HIST 2111 or HIST 2112 may be used to fulfill both the United States and Georgia History requirements and also count toward Social Science electives or the Political Science & US History requirement. INTA 1200, POL 1101, or PUBP 3000 may be used to fulfill both the United States and GeorgiaConstitution requirements and also count toward Social Science electives or the Political Science & US History requirement. Note that all students must take at least one of these five courses (HIST 2111, HIST 2212, INTA 1200, POL 1101, or PUBP 3000); courses may be completed at GT or via AP/IB/Transfer credit.

For students who first entered GTprior toMay 2023,one course from HIST 2111, HIST 2112, POL 1101, PUBP 3000, or INTA 1200 can be used to satisfy the Georgia Legislative Requirements (GLRs). For more information, please refer to the Biology Undergraduate Handbook for your specific catalog year.

Free Electives: The remaining 11 credits beyond those listed above are free electives, which may be taken for letter grade or pass/fail. Pass-fail is allowed for Free Electives only. Refer to Institute rules for maximum pass-fail credits allowed.

*Timing: Students must complete a MATH course† and ENGL 1101 and 1102 courses within their first 30 credit hours as part of the state’s required Communication and Quantitative Outcomes. After reaching 30 credit hours, a student must enroll in the next course necessary to make progress toward completing this requirement in every semester in which they take classes.

†Consult the registrar’s website and your academic advisor for the exact MATH sequence required by the 30 credit hour mark.

+A minimum of 39 hours of upper division coursework (3000-level or higher) is required for all Georgia Tech undergraduate degrees. The 39 hours of upper division coursework can fulfill any category of degree requirements, including free electives and "fall-through" courses. See the Georgia Tech Catalog section XIII, rule D2

Allowable Non-Biological Sciences Breadth Electives (see above for full details regarding Biology Electives):

AllBMED3XXXand higher courses EXCEPT:

BMED4698 Research Assistantship

BMED4699 Undergraduate Research

BMED4900-4903 Special Problems

All CHEM3XXXand higher courses EXCEPT:

CHEM 4601 Chemistry Seminar

CHEM 4698 Research Assistantship

CHEM 4699 Undergraduate Research

CHEM 4901- 4903 Special Problems in Chemistry

AllEAS3XXXand higher courses EXCEPT:

EAS4651 Practical Internship

EAS4698 Research Assistantship

EAS4699 Undergraduate Research

EAS4900 Special Problems

All MATH 3XXX*and higher courses EXCEPT:

MATH 4080 Senior Project I

MATH 4090 Senior Project II

MATH 4698 Research Assistantship

MATH 4699 Undergraduate Research

MATH 4999 Special Problems

*NOTE that credit is not awarded for MATH 2550 if taken with MATH 1555

All NEUR 3XXXand higher courses EXCEPT:

NEUR 4698 Research Assistantship

NEUR4699 Undergraduate Research

NEUR 4901Special Problems

All PHYS3XXXand higher courses EXCEPT:

PHYS 4601 Senior Seminar I

PHYS 4602 Senior Seminar II

PHYS 4698 Research Assistantship

PHYS 4699 Undergraduate Research

AllPSYC3XXXand higher EXCEPT:

PSYC4600 Senior Thesis I

PSYC4601 Senior Thesis II

PSYC4698 Research Assistantship

PSYC4699 Undergraduate Research

PSYC4900-4910 Special Problems

LMC(Research Option studentsonly):

LMC4701 Undergraduate Research Proposal Writing

LMC4702 Undergraduate Research Thesis Writing

MGT(Business Option studentsonly; maximum 6 hours):

See the Biology Business Option page for details on allowable MGT electives; for students pursuing the Business Option only

Suggested plan of study (4 year plan)

The suggested plan of study (4 year plan)proposed here helps you balance the Biology major requirements over four academic years without taking summer classes. Please consult with your academic advisor for questions about taking courses in a different order than suggested here.

Bachelor of Science in Biology 2024-2025 degree requirements

BS Biology Degree Requirements | School of Biological Sciences | Georgia Institute of Technology | Atlanta, GA | Georgia Institute of Technology (1)

Important notes

Pass-fail allowed for Free Electives only. Refer to the Institute rules for maximum pass-fail credits allowed.

  1. BIOS 1107 and 1107L may be substituted for BIOS 1207 and 1207L; BIOS 1108 and 1108L may be substituted for BIOS 1208 and 1208L
  2. Four credit hours of Biology elective may be substituted for BIOS 1208 and 1208L if a score of 5 was achieved on the AP Biology test. A maximum of 1 of these credits may be BIOS 4697 or BIOS 4699. Please discuss this option with your advisor. It is important to note that substituting for BIOS 1208 and 1208L often results in a student needing to take more than a single Biology elective class, because most Biology electives are only 3 credit hours.
  3. Biology lab courses: Ecology, Genetics, and Cell & Molecular Biology each have an associated laboratory course. You must take two of these three labs, each of which must be taken concurrently with the corresponding lecture course: Ecology Lab (BIOS 2301/2311), Genetics Lab (BIOS 2601/2611), or Cell and Molecular Biology Lab (BIOS 3451). Be aware that 3451 is typically only offered in the Spring semester; students who take 3450 in the Fall are eligible to take 3451 the following spring.
  4. The four Georgia Legislative Requirements (GLRs) must be completed before 90 credit hours and may be completed as follows: US HISTORY fulfilled by HIST 2111, HIST 2112, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit, or passing the United States History Module Examination*; GA HISTORY fulfilled by HIST 2111, HIST 2112, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit, or passing the Georgia History Module Examination; US CONSTITUTION fulfilled by INTA 1200, POL 1101, PUBP 3000, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit, or passing the United States Constitution Module Examination*; GA CONSTITUTION fulfilled by INTA 1200, POL 1101, PUBP 3000, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit, equivalent transfer/AP/IB credit, or passing the Georgia Constitution Module Examination*. Note that all students must complete one of these five courses (HIST 2111, HIST 2112, INTA 1200, POL 1101, or PUBP 3000) to fulfill the Political Science & US History requirement; courses may be completed at GT or via AP/IB/Transfer credit. *Note that the Module Examinations do not carry any academic credit.
  5. The following courses meet the Quantitative Biology Course requirement (Note that MATH 1551 and MATH 1553 are pre-requisites for most of the Quantitative Requirement courses): BIOS 3400 Mathematical Models in Biology, BIOS 4150 Genomics, BIOS 4401 Experimental Design & Biostatistics (meets MCAT statistics requirement).
  6. The prerequisite for BIOS 3600 is either BIOS 2300, BIOS 2310, BIOS 2600, or BIOS 2610.
  7. The Senior Research Experience can be met with any of the following during the fourth year fall or spring semesters: BIOS 4590 Research Project Lab, BIOS 4690 Independent Research Project (requires at least one previous semester of BIOS 4699/2699).
  8. A minimum of 39 hours of upper division coursework (3000-level or higher) is required for all Georgia Tech undergraduate degrees. The 39 hours of upper division coursework can fulfill any category of degree requirements, including free electives and "fall-through" courses.

Biology degree checklist

The Biology degree checklist provides a convenient way to keep track of your progress toward your degree. You can also refer to Degreeworks(available in Buzzport) to review your progress.

More information on Biology courses:

  • Biology course descriptions
  • Biology course syllabi
  • BIOS-BIOL-APPH course conversiontable
  • Biology 2-year teaching plan
  • The Undergraduate Handbook has more information about customizing your Biology degree and the answer to almost any question you can think of!
  • See the Georgia Tech Catalog for more information about core curriculum requirements
BS Biology Degree Requirements | School of Biological Sciences | Georgia Institute of Technology | Atlanta, GA | Georgia Institute of Technology (2024)

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