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Department of Biology Biology Degree

Major, Minor


Join us at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and learn how you can build a biological sciences career in fields such as education, private industry, government programs and medicine. In pursuing a biology degree, you will learn how life develops, functions and changes.

We are continually adding new, cutting-edge courses across the entire biology curriculum. There are outstanding collections of fish, reptiles, fossils, mammals, birds and plants. On-campus facilities for students include scanning and transmission electron microscopes, DNA sequencers, aquaculture labs, aquaria, greenhouses, and the only student-run vivarium in the state. Our proximity to 40,000 acres of private, county and state land is a tremendous asset for UWSP students.

Why Study Biology at UW-Stevens Point?

The department places a high priority on collaborating with our students in both research and discovery to establish a deeper understanding of life and its natural processes. Students study in the state-of-the-art Chemistry Biology Building (CBB) and the Daniel O. Trainer Natural Resources Building (TNR). The CBB, opened in 2018, is the best-equipped facility of its kind among 11 teaching-focused University of Wisconsin schools.  Students can shape their studies around their scientific interests and aspirations.


Our Hands-on Experiences

UW-Stevens Point offers its students dedicated labs for molecular genetics, cell biology, human and animal physiology, plant taxonomy, human anatomy, higher vertebrates and lower vertebrates. We are able to study in 40,000 acres of private, county and state land within 20 miles of campus, providing a great diversity of habitats for scientific investigations. The department is also home to two leading centers for aquaculture research, the Northern Aquaculture Demonstration Facility and Aquaponics Innovation Center. Plus, we have the only student-run vivarium in the state.

Explore Living Labs

Field courses take students off campus to conduct research with faculty. Students gain valuable, hands-on experience through research and field opportunities, including courses in Florida and Hawaii. These intense learning experiences provide hands-on, living labs to apply and understand ecological principles. Students may also take part in museum curation, greenhouse work, and shadowing of working professionals.

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Our students begin with a year-long introduction to the biological sciences, then take courses in genetics, evolutionary biology, ecology, physiology (plant, animal, or human), and cell and molecular biology. Students also complete courses in chemistry and mathematics, and have up to 15 elective credits to complete the major. The biology major consists of a range of 55 to 62 credits, depending on the 100-level chemistry and cellular/molecular biology options taken.

Navigate the major with our Biology Major Map tool. Students should consult with the Biology Department faculty when selecting courses required to fulfill the major.

Required biology core and collateral course:

  1. Intro biology sequence – BIOL 110, 5 cr and BIOL 111 or BIOL 130 and 160. 
  2. BIOL 210 – Principles of Genetics, 3 cr
  3. BIOL 270 – Principles of Evolution, 4 cr
  4. BIOL 305 – General Ecology, 3 cr
  5. BIOL 306 – Ecological Methods, 1 cr
  6. BIOL 490 – Senior Seminar, 2 cr
  7. One Physiology Course: BIOL 351 Plant Physiology, 4 cr or BIOL 381 Animal Physiology, 4 cr or BIOL 385 – Human Physiology, 4cr
  8. Cellular and Molecular Biology Course: BIOL 302 Cellular and Molecular Biology, 3 cr or BIOL 314 – Cell Biology, 4 cr and BIOL 320 Molecular Biology, 4 cr
  9. Chemistry Courses – CHEM 105 – Fundamental Chemistry, 5 cr and CHEM 106 Fundamental Chemistry, 5 cr or  CHEM 117 – General Chemistry Principles, 5 cr.  CHEM 220 Survey of Organic Chemistry, 4 cr or CHEM 325 – Organic Chemistry, 4 cr
  10. Mathematics Courses- MATH 111 – Applied Calculus, 4 cr or MATH 225 Calculus I, 5 cr or MATH 255 Elementary Statistical Methods, 4 cr
  11. Elective credits in biology, 12 cr. For full listing of electives refer to the Course Catalog: Biology Major

Common areas of emphasis in biology include aquatic biology, biobusiness, biotechnology, botany, ecology/environmental, education, graduate work/research, horticulture, microbiology, natural history, pharmaceutical and biomedical sales, zoos and aquaria, and zoology. Students looking to advance in their profession after employment or enter graduate school, medical school, or veterinary medicine should consult their adviser about additional math, physics and chemistry coursework.


Student-run organizations at UW-Stevens Point offer a number of opportunities to get involved with fellow students, professors, and the community. Biology student organizations include the Herpetology Society, the Pre-Med and Allied Health Club, Botany Club, and the Animal and Pre-Vet Club.

More opportunities can be found on the Stevens Point Involvement Network (SPIN).


Meet Your Faculty

Student-professor interaction is a high priority at UW-Stevens Point, with a low student-to-teacher ratio. Most of our classes and labs are taught by a Ph.D.-trained instructor with expertise in the field, and we offer many opportunities for undergraduate research.

Student Employment

The UW-Stevens Point Department of Biology employs a large number of students who provide essential support and assistance in all parts of the department.

Student workers gain valuable experience working with faculty and staff in laboratories, the stockroom, plant or animal care, and many other activities! Many faculty members also hire students to work in their research labs.

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