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Biochemistry B.S/B.A.

The Biochemistry Major focuses on the molecular understanding of biological processes.   A fascination with the molecular structure and function, the processes of life itself, is an indication that this major may be the one for you.  Courses you will take focus on the structure and function of nucleic acids, proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates, and how these molecules mediate chemical processes in the cell.  In addition, you will learn both qualitative and quantitative methodologies needed to fully probe the relationship between molecular structure and changes in biological processes, a thorough understanding of the biology of microorganisms, the application of both classical and modern genetics to living systems, and the transformation of molecular information in biological systems. You will earn a B.S. degree or B. A. degree which will prepare you for graduate or professional school or to work in a variety of fields. The B.S. degree is recommended if you intend to go to graduate school. The B.A. degree is ideal if you plan to pursue a career in medicine, pharmacy, or another allied health profession. It will also well serve students who are interested in using biochemistry in a business career. With a core of chemistry and biology courses, you can choose upper level electives in biology, nutrition, or exercise science, thus tailoring the degree to your specific interests. The B.A. requires two fewer courses than the B.S. degree, allowing more room for required courses outside of science for specific professional degree programs, or for a minor. Students in this major can choose between the Introductory and General Physics sequence. A key distinctive of the biochemistry major’s course of study is a strong emphasis on developing laboratory skills throughout the curriculum. The department has a variety of research opportunities available beginning in the second year.

The completion of this major provides considerable versatility to a student, who will be well qualified to work in any area of biochemistry, molecular biology, or biotechnology.  In addition, the hands-on use of analytical instrumentation throughout this program will allow a student to easily succeed in a career in chemical analysis.  These positions are abundant for Bachelor’s level scientists and include applications in environmental chemistry and forensic science.  Furthermore, this major is particularly well suited for students planning to pursue a career in medical school, or some other allied health profession.  Finally, the Biochemistry major is outstanding preparation for a student planning to attend graduate school in biochemistry or molecular biology, as well as interdisciplinary areas such as biophysics, neuroscience, genetics, cell biology and immunology.

For information about the American Chemical Society Certified Degree in Chemistry, please write the chair, Dr. Roseann K. Sachs, at



View the curriculum requirements and the types of courses you would be taking as a Biochemistry, B.S. major and Biochemistry, B.A. major. View the four-year plans for Biochemistry, B.S. major and Biochemistry, B.A. major.