Biology (B.S.), Biomedical Emphasis

Southwestern Adventist University offers two Biology degrees, the Bachelor’s of Science (BS) and the Bachelor’s of Arts (BA). Typically, students wishing to use their biology degree as a launching point toward professional school (medical, dental, physician’s assistant, physical therapy, occupational therapy, etc.,) take the BS degree because it includes required chemistry classes that are prerequisites for professional school. The B.S. degree allows a choice between two areas of emphasis: Biomedical emphasis or Ecology and Conservation Biology emphasis. 

Molecular and cell biology are increasingly important in biomedical research and professional healthcare careers. Cultivating a deep understanding of the cell at the molecular level is not only exciting, but it develops the analytic thinking skills that are critical for both research and healthcare. Southwestern Adventist University's Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with a Biomedical emphasis offers students the training and knowledge base necessary to pursue a career in biomedical research, medicine, dentistry, physician assistant, pharmacy, or physical therapy among others. Students will have the opportunity to take courses in molecular biology, cell biology, genetics, histology, immunology, parasitology, and physiology. While at Southwestern Adventist University, many students work as teaching assistants for lower division labs, gaining valuable experience in the lab and in teaching. Students will also have the opportunity to work alongside faculty on real-world research projects.

Our department prepares students to competently sit admissions tests for these professions and our graduates have gone on to prestigious health professional schools as well as graduate schools. Students in the biology department are presented with rare leadership opportunities through the Biology Club and the potential to work with professors as laboratory and research assistants. Biology majors receive research experience which can include cancer research, molecular biology applications, microbiological investigation, plant studies, animal ecology and conservation, or dinosaur bone analysis, among other things, depending on the student’s individual interests. 

A solid science foundation is essential to many career paths. A degree in Biology with a Biomedical emphasis can prepare students to become a Medical Doctor, Respiratory Therapist, Radiographer, Physician Assistant, Pharmacist, Biotechnology Laboratory Technician, Publis Health Officer, Health Educator, Science Writer, Physical Therapist, Dentist, Occupational Therapist, Speech-Language Pathologist, Biomedical Research Scientist, Optometrist, Orthotist & Prosthetist, or Veterinarian. (Note that some of these careers require additional graduate training. Please consult with your academic advisor for career planning.)  In fact, a degree in biology is the most common college degree of medical professionals. It is also the most common degree of scientists working on exciting and critical research questions such as the spread of infectious disease (ie, HIV, malaria, influenza), the cure for cancer, and why people age. 

The career potential for graduates with a Biology degree is very large. If a student does not wish to pursue further education after the college degree, there are jobs available as technical assistants for biotech, academic, or government positions. Alternatively, when combined with a teaching certificate, biology graduates are prepared to teach high school biology. Another career option for biology graduates is to pursue further education in the form of professional or graduate school. This is the path most students choose. Professional schools can be costly but offer high salaries upon completion whereas Ph.D. level graduate school is usually free including tuition and living stipends. A Ph.D. offers varied salaries upon completion. 

Physicians and Surgeons, Median Pay: $187,200/year; Job Outlook (next 10 years): 14% growth (much faster average). Physicion Assistant, Median Pay: $98,180/year; Job Outlook (next 10 years): 30% (faster than average). Pharmacists, Median Pay: $121,500/year; Job Outlook (next 10 years): 3% (slower average). Biological Technicians, Median Pay: $41,650; Job Outlook (next 10 years): 10% (faster than average).

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/ (visited March 14, 2017).

To view general education requirements for this major please visit catalog.swau.edu/Undergraduate/2017-2018. 

BIOL 111, 112 General Biology.............................................8

BIOL 180 Biology Freshman Seminar.....................................1

BIOL 230 Ecology..................................................................4

BIOL 320 Genetics.................................................................4

BIOL 419 Philosophy of Science.............................................3

BIOL 340 Cell & Molecular Biology I.......................................4

BIOL Biology Electives (x3)...............................................9-12

TOTAL: 33-36

Required Cognates:

CHEM 111 General Chemistry I........................................... 4

CHEM 112 General Chemistry II.......................................... 4

CHEM 231 Organic Chemistry I........................................... 4

CHEM 232 Organic Chemistry II.......................................... 4

MATH 121 Precalculus or

MATH 241 Introduction to Probability & Statistics............... 3

PHYS 121 General Physics I................................................. 4

PHYS 122 General Physics II................................................ 4

COMM 111 Speech.............................................................. 3

CSIS Computer Science Elective........................................ 1-3

TOTAL: 31-33

*BIOL 480 is a one credit hour course. In order to count as an elective, it
must be repeated three times and a final presentation must be given.

 

First Year

First Semester

BIOL 111—General Biology I...................................................4

CHEM 111—General Chemistry I.............................................4

BIOL 180—Biology Research Seminar......................................1

UNIV 110—Principles of Active Learning...............................1

ENGL 121—Freshman Composition.........................................3

MATH 121—Precalculus...........................................................3

TOTAL:​ 16

Second Semester

BIOL 112—General Biology II.................................................4

CHEM 112—General Chemistry II...........................................4

CSIS ELEC—Computer Science Elective..................................3

RELG ELEC—Religion Elective..................................................3

KINT 111—Physical Fitness.....................................................1

TOTAL:​ 15

Second Year

BIOL 230—General Ecology.....................................................4

CHEM 231—Organic Chemistry I............................................4

ENGL 220—Research & Professional Writing........................3

COMM 111—Speech.................................................................3

KINA ELEC—Kinesiology Activity Elective.................................3

TOTAL:​ 15

BIOL 280—Biology Research Statistics..................................1

CHEM 232—Organic Chemistry II..............................................4

BIOL 320—Genetics..................................................................4

ELEC—Social/Beh Science Elective...........................................3

RELG ELEC—Religion Elective....................................................3

TOTAL:​ 15

Third Year

BIOL 340—Cell & Molecular Biology I.....................................4

BIOL 380—Research Proposal Development..........................1

CHEM 431—Biochemistry I......................................................3

PHYS 121—General Physics......................................................4

RELG ELEC—Religion Elective...................................................3

TOTAL:​ 16

BIOL 480—Research in Biology..............................................1

BIOL ELEC—Biology Elective (U.D.).........................................4

CHEM 433—Biochemistry II....................................................3

PHYS 122—General Physics....................................................4

ELEC—Social/Beh Science Elective.........................................3

TOTAL:​ 15

Fourth Year

BIOL 480—Research in Biology...............................................1

BIOL ELEC—Biology Elective (U.D.)..........................................4

RELG ELEC—Religion Elective (U.D.)........................................3

HIST ELEC—History Elective......................................................3

KINA ELEC—Kinesiology Activity Elective.................................1

ELEC—Upper Division Elective.................................................4

TOTAL:​ 16

BIOL 419—Philosophy of Science ......................................3

BIOL 481—Senior Thesis ......................................................1

BIOL ELEC—Biology Elective (U.D.).....................................4

ENGL ELEC—Literature Elective............................................3

HIST ELEC—History Elective .................................................3

KINA ELEC—Kinesiology Activity Elective .......................1

TOTAL:​ 15