Bachelor of Science: Biology
UMKC Essentials is the university-wide curriculum that all undergraduate students will complete. The 30-credit hour program includes a First Year Experience course; three critical thinking courses in the areas of Arts & Humanities, Natural & Physical Sciences, and Social & Behavioral Sciences; a Culture and Diversity course; a Civic & Urban Engagement course; two courses in Written Composition and one course in Oral Communication; and a Math Pathway course. Transfer students entering UMKC will elect from the UMKC Essentials General Education Program or the Missouri Core 42 General Education Curriculum. Academic advisors will meet with incoming transfer students to determine which option best serves the student’s educational needs. More information about General Education may be found here: https://catalog.umkc.edu/undergraduate-academic-regulations-information/general-education-requirements/
Every undergraduate student must take a course covering the United States Constitution and the Missouri State Constitution before graduation. Course options are included in the program requirements section below.
Information on exit examinations is available in the Undergraduate Academic Regulations and Information section of the catalog.
Missouri Higher Education Civics Achievement Examination
In accordance with Missouri Senate Bill 807 (section 170.013.1), 'any student entering a public institution of higher education for the first time after July 2019 who is pursuing an associate's or bachelor's degree from such institution shall successfully pass an examination on the provisions and principles of American civics with a score of seventy percent or greater as a condition of graduation from such institution'. To satisfy this requirement at UMKC, students access the exam through the Canvas site. This requirement will be listed in the degree audit system as, 'Take State Mandated Missouri Higher Education Civics Achievement Examination', and listed on the transcript as 'Missouri Civics Examination'.
Student Learning Outcomes
Students graduating from this program will:
- Identify fundamental concepts in the biological sciences, including the relationship between structure and function at all levels of biological organization, evolution and the role of natural selection in the process, ecological relationships between organisms and their environment.
- Describe cellular structure and explain the major biochemical processes that occur in cells.
- Describe and explain the mechanisms of heredity and the flow of genetic information.
- Apply knowledge in basic mathematics, chemistry, and physics to solve biological problems.
- Employ techniques and procedures commonly used in modern biology laboratories.
- Analyze and critically evaluate scientific data.
- Write clearly about topics in the biological sciences for a peer or professional audience.
The B.S. degree program is a rigorous curriculum designed for students interested in preparing for graduate studies or a professional school, or pursuing entry level employment in a science-related field.
Students interested in pursuing undergraduate degree programs offered by Biological Sciences are admitted through the UMKC Office of Admissions. Transfer and Readmitted students should contact the University admissions office and the School of Biological and Chemical Sciences for information about transfer admissions and evaluation of transfer coursework. Transfer admission eligibility includes an overall grade-point average of at least 2.0 for all college-level coursework attempted at previous institutions, an overall GPA of at least 2.0 in courses used to fulfill School of Biological Sciences major requirements, and a University of Missouri Biology GPA of at least 2.0.
|First Semester Experience Course (GEFSE)||3|
|ENGLISH 110||Introduction to Academic Prose||3|
|ENGLISH 225||English II: Intermediate Academic Prose||3|
|Oral Communication (choose one of the following):||3|
|Fundamentals of Effective Speaking and Listening|
|Introduction to Communication|
|Argumentation And Debate (offered via dual credit only)|
|Math Pathway (satisfied in major requirements below)|
|Critical Thinking in Arts & Humanities (GECRT-AH)||3|
|Critical Thinking in Natural & Physical Sciences (GECRT-SC)||3|
|Critical Thinking in Social & Behavioral Sciences (GECRT-SS)||3|
|Culture & Diversity Course (GECDV)||3|
|Civic & Urban Engagement Course (GECUE)||3|
Constitution Course Requirement
Section 170.011.1 of the Missouri Revised Statutes, 2015, states that all candidates for a degree issued by a college or university in the state of Missouri must have “satisfactorily passed an examination on the provisions and principles of the Constitution of the United States and of the state of Missouri, and in American history and American institutions.”
Courses at UMKC that satisfy this state requirement are:
|Choose one of the following:||3|
|The Supreme Court And The Criminal Process|
|U.S. History to 1877|
|U.S. History Since 1877|
|Honors American Government|
There are a few other ways this requirement can be satisfied for students transferring to UMKC:
- Take an equivalent course from the list above at a regionally accredited institution.
- Earn credit for one of the above courses through AP, IB, or CLEP.
- Take a course that directly satisfies the Missouri Constitution Requirement at another Missouri institution.
- Have a previous bachelors degree (or higher) from a regionally accredited institution.
- Have an Associate of Arts degree from a regionally accredited institution.
- Complete the 42 Hour Core at a Missouri institution and have it listed on the official transcript.
Biology Course Requirements
The following core courses are required:
& BIOLOGY 108
|General Biology I Laboratory|
and General Biology I
|or MOTRBIOL 100LB||MOTR Essentials in Biology w/ Lab - Botany|
|or MOTRBIOL 150LB||MOTR Biology with Lab|
& BIOLOGY 109
|General Biology II Laboratory|
and General Biology II
|or MOTRBIOL 100LZ||MOTR Essentials in Biology with Lab|
|or MOTRBIOL 150LZ||MOTR Biology w/Lab|
|BIOLOGY 202||Cell Biology||3|
Biology Lab Requirements
Two of the following laboratory courses are required.
|Select two of the following:||4-6|
|Introductory Anatomy Laboratory|
|MOTR Anatomy focused Essentials in Human Biology with Lab|
|MOTR Anatomy focused Human Biology w/Lab|
|Laboratory in Developmental Biology, Genetics and Cell Biology|
|Laboratory in Microbiology (WI)|
or BIOLOGY 313L
|Laboratory in Microbiology|
|Laboratory in Histology and Cellular Ultrastructure (WI)|
or BIOLOGY 328L
|Laboratory in Histology and Cellular Ultrastructure|
|Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy Laboratory|
|Laboratory in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (WI)|
or BIOLOGY 360L
|Laboratory in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology|
Biology Synthesis requirement:
|Select from the following for a total of three credit hours:||3|
|Critical Analysis of Biological Issues (WI)|
|Directed Studies—Biological Sciences|
|Directed Studies—Biological Sciences|
|Undergraduate Research-Biological Sciences|
|Undergraduate Research-Biological Sciences|
Students must complete additional biology majors coursework for a total of 42 credit hours of biology courses with grades of C- or better. 26 of these hours must be 300- or 400-level. At least one biology course must be writing intensive (WI or WL). A minimum of 21 credit hours of biology courses must be taken from BIOLOGY or LIFE-SCI coursework at UMKC. The UM Biology GPA Must be at least 2.0.
|Additional Majors Coursework Options 1||17|
|First Year Seminar|
|Methods in Biological Research|
|Preparing for Careers in Biology|
or LIFE-SCI 202
|Careers in Health II|
|Careers in Biological & Chemical Sciences I|
or LIFE-SCI 201
|Careers in Health I|
|Marine and Freshwater Biology|
|Global Health: New and Emerging Infectious Diseases|
|Biogeography and Biodiversity|
|Assisting Undergraduate Learning in Biology|
|Experience Based Education|
|Introduction to Evolution|
Physical Sciences and Mathematics Course Requirements
The following courses must be completed with grades of C- or better.
|CHEM 211||General Chemistry I||4|
|or MOTRCHEM 150||MOTR Chemistry I|
|CHEM 211L||Experimental General Chemistry I||1|
|CHEM 212R||General Chemistry II||4|
|CHEM 212LR||Experimental General Chemistry II||1|
|CHEM 321||Organic Chemistry I||3|
|CHEM 321L||Organic Chemistry Laboratory I||1|
|CHEM 322R||Organic Chemistry II||3|
|CHEM 322L||Organic Chemistry Laboratory II||1|
|MATH 120||Precalculus (satisfies Math Pathway)||5|
|MATH 210||Calculus I||4|
|Select one of the following:||3-4|
or STAT 115
or MOTRMATH 110
|MOTR Statistical Reasoning|
|PHYSICS 210||General Physics I||4-5|
|or PHYSICS 240||Physics For Scientists and Engineers I|
|PHYSICS 220||General Physics II||4|
|or PHYSICS 250||Physics For Scientists and Engineers II|
A maximum of 12 hours for a combination of 399, 497, and 499 coursework may be applied toward the major with only 4 credit hours at the 400-level.
Minimum GPA: 2.0 (UM cumulative; UM Biology)
Total Credit Hours: 120
Tools for Planning and Fulfilling Academic Requirements
UMKC's Major Maps are detailed, semester by semester plans that lead a student to complete all degree requirements within four years. Plans include benchmarks and critical courses by term that assist a student’s evaluation of progress and major “fit”. In order to ensure that the appropriate courses are taken, students are encouraged to consult with the undergraduate advisor for this major. Please see the tab above to view the major map for this program.
UMKC’s Transfer Guides provide detailed guidance on recommended transfer coursework, plans of study, transfer timelines, and transfer contact information. To ensure a seamless transfer experience, students are encouraged to work with both their community college advisor and a UMKC advisor when planning their coursework.
UMKC’s PlanMyDegree ‘Audit’ degree audit system provides an individual evaluation of all degree requirements (General Education, Degree Specific, Major Specific, etc.) for students' officially recorded (Office of Registration and Records) and “what if” exploratory plans of study. This evaluation is used to certify all graduation requirements.
UMKC’s PlanMyDegree ‘Plans’ degree planning tool enables students to develop a personalized semester by semester plan of study towards completion of degree requirements for student’s officially recorded (Office of Registration and Records) and “what if” exploratory plans of study. Update and edit your full plan to degree completion each term and confirm accuracy each semester with your Academic Advisor(s).