Courses for Degree Requirements
The undergraduate curriculum allows students the option to gain general training in Plant Biology or to specialize in Ecology and Conservation Biology, Molecular and Biochemical Physiology, or Systematics and Biodiversity. The general plant biology option emphasizes breadth in Plant Biology rather than depth and allows students to select courses from the entire curriculum. Students who want to specialize in one of the three areas above would select from a list of specific courses, tailoring the available courses to their current and future interests. Students can switch between options during their program, but they are strongly advised to consult with the undergraduate advisor and faculty in the various nodes before choosing to do so.
The number of credits required for a major in Plant Biology depends upon whether students wish to pursue a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree. The primary differences between the two is that the BS degree requires additional courses in mathematics, chemistry, and physics and is intended primarily for students who intend to pursue a graduate degree in the sciences. Both degree programs require 76-78 semester-hour credits and begin with a core series of Plant Biology, Biology, and Chemistry courses. Students pursuing the BA option fulfill the remaining 18-20 credit hours with electives. For students pursuing the BS degree, additional Chemistry and/or Physics courses are required, with 7-9 credits left for electives. Choice of electives depends upon the student's interests and selection of the general or specialization option. Each node provides specific recommendations concerning the allocation of elective hours and advises students individually. View the undergraduate catalog (2015-16) and the course requirements for the two undergraduate majors and their specializations. To download a checklist that you can use to keep track of your course requirements, click here for the BA degree and here for the BS degree.