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University of Pittsburgh    
2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog 
  Jul 15, 2024
2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Molecular Biology, BS

Molecular biology emphasizes the study of molecules that make up an organism, how they interact, and how they are controlled. With the development of the field of genomics, biologists also study one class of molecules (DNA) at the whole genome level. Molecular biology and genomics are applied within all biological disciplines, including biochemistry, cell biology, and developmental biology. Molecular biology and genomics developments have revolutionized biological research, fueling the explosive growth in the biotechnology industry and rapid increase of molecular medicine.

The Molecular Biology and Genomics major provides a strong background for many science careers, incorporating the requirements expected for admission to medical, dental, and other health professional schools and to graduate schools in cell and molecular biology, biochemistry, and related disciplines. Positions for molecular biologists at the BS, MS, and PhD levels are available in the biotechnology industries as well as in universities, medical schools, hospitals, government laboratories, research institutes, and public health institutions.

Requirements for the Molecular Biology and Genomics Major are described below.

Biological Sciences courses

Majors must complete a minimum of 32 credits of Biological Sciences coursework as described below.

Writing-intensive course

Choose one of the following courses.

Molecular Biology and Genomics elective courses

Choose two lecture courses and one lab course from the following lists.

Grade requirements

  • Each required BIOSC course for the major must be completed with a grade of C or better.
  • The elective courses for the major must also be completed with a grade of C or better.
  • A minimum GPA of 2.0 in all departmental courses taken is required for graduation. If a C- or lower is earned in an elective course for the major but is not repeated, the course will be used to calculate the departmental GPA but will not be counted toward the 32 credits required for the major.
  • Students must also earn a minimum GPA of 2.0 in the co-requisite courses. A passing grade of C- or lower in a co-requisite course can be accepted if balanced by a higher grade in another co-requisite course so that the co-requisite GPA is 2.0 or higher. Exceptions: CHEM 0110 and CHEM 0120 have to be C or better to declare the major; PHYS 0110/0174 has to be C or better to enroll in PHYS 0111/0175; MATH 0220 has to be C or better to enroll in MATH 0230.
  • Only one BIOSC course may be taken on a Satisfactory/No Credit (S/NC) basis.

University Honors College equivalent courses may be substituted for required or elective courses.

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