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Academic Programs

As the largest instructional unit in the College of Science, Engineering & Technology (COSET), the Department of Biology offers courses in Biology (BIOL) to the general student population, the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree in Biology, the Master of Science (M.S.) Degree in Biology, and a minor in Biology for students pursuing majors in other departments where the declaration of a minor is required. In addition, the Department of Biology serves as the academic unit overseeing the Texas Southern University’s Pre-Nursing Program. The teaching, research, and office facilities for faculty members are housed on the second and third floors of the TSU Science Center with the Department Office located in Room 203Z.

In pursuing the B. S. in Biology, students may select from the Comprehensive or the Pre-Health Professional curricula. The Comprehensive Concentration is designed to prepare students to enter the workforce or for dditional study at the graduate level, while the Pre-Health Professional Concentration is intended to prepare students for professional schools (Medical, Dental, Veterinary, Optometry, Physical Theraphyand etc.) upon graduation. Students should contact professional schools directly to ascertain specific admission requirements. The specific requirements for the B. S. in Biology are described in detail below. All students majoring in Biology must declare and complete a minor in a second academic discipline if they are first-time degree seekers. Grades of “C” or better, where grades of “C-” are unacceptable, must be earned in all courses needed to satisfy the major and the minor.

The Biology undergraduate curriculum at Texas Southern Uiversity is designed to provide a comprehensive general education in the natural sciences, humanities, and social sciences and a strong foundation in the principles of modern biology. Interested students must gain admission to the university, satisfy TSI or any equivalent test requirements, and remove deficiencies identified at the time of admission, with the University’s TSI Testing Center. Shortly after arriving at Texas Southern University, all students interested in pursuing a degree in Biology will be assigned a pre-major advisor, who will assist in planning their program of study and mentoring them in achieving their goals. Biology pre-majors may petition the department to declare their major as Biology upon the successful completion of Biology 111, 112, 131 and 132 with a cumulative GPA of 2.75. All students following the Pre-Health Professional Concentration will be required to maintain a GPA of 2.75 with respect to courses in the following cognate areas: Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics. All students following the Pre-Health Professional Concentration will be required to maintain an overall GPA of 3.5. If a student’s overall GPA falls below 2.75 for two consecutive semesters the student will be removed from the list of designated majors and minors in Biology. Once admitted, students are each assigned an official faculty advisor who must approve their individual schedule of courses for each semester or term of enrollment. All majors should request that the Faculty Chair or the Department Appointee evaluate their transcripts at the beginning of their senior year to verify eligibility for degree conferral at the end of that year. Additionally, all Biology majors are required to pass an Exit Examination prior to conferral of their degree. It is recommended that all Biology majors enroll to take the exit examination in the spring semester (2nd Monday in April) of the junior year. Students who do not pass the exit exam may take as a remedial course BIOL 439 (Principles of Biology). NOTE: If a student fails the exit exam and takes BIOL 439, these credits will not be applicable to the total biology hours required for the student’s specific curriculum.

Individuals interested in seeking certification for teaching in the public schools of Texas in Biology should contact the Teacher Certification Officer in the College of Education at Texas Southern University for application instructions. For the minor in Biology, 21 semester credit hours are required through enrollment in the following courses: BIOL 131 (3 credits), BIOL 132 (3 credits), BIOL 231 Cell Biology (3 credits), BIOL 232 Developmental Biology (3 credits), and 9 additional 300-level or 400-level BIOL credits. Although studetns are required to take BIOL 111 (1 credit) and BIOL 112 (1 credit) as co-requisites with BIOL 132 and BIOL 132, respectively, these 2 credits are not counted toward the completion of the minor in Biology. In conjunction with these 21 credits, at least one year of college chemistry must be completed along with Mathematics 133 and 134 or 136. Grades of “C” or better, where grades of “C” are unacceptable, must be earned in all courses needed to satisfy the minor.

Further information may be obtained by contacting the Department Office at (713) 313-7005.