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updated 8-18-16


  1. Core Courses:

    All majors are required to complete the following four classes:

       RELG 2650       Theological Bioethics
       PHS 3050          Introduction to Public Health
       BIOL 3000         Cell Biology
       BIOL 3010         Genetics & Molecular Biology        

    Students are strongly encouraged to complete RELG 2650 and PHS 3050 by the end of their second year. It is desirable to have all core classes completed by the end of the third year.

  2. Required Science Elective Credits (Two courses):

    In addition to the core classes listed above, all majors are required to complete two additional upper level courses in advanced science. At least one course must be from Biology (BIOL) and be at the 3000-level or higher.Students are encouraged to take at least one laboratory based course at the 3000-level or higher.

    Students interested in professional school (Medical, Dental, etc.) should consider taking BIOL 3030 (Biochemistry) to fulfill part of this requirement.

    Courses in Biology designated as Independent Research in the Life Sciences (BIOL 4910), Independent Research in Biology (4920), Independent Readings in Biology (BIOL 4900), and Independent Research in Human Biology (HBIO 4950-4960) cannot be used to satisfy this requirement.

    Public Health Sciences courses used to meet elective credit must be at the 5000-level or higher, must be non-policy based, and must be approved by the Program Director.

    Courses being applied for Science Elective Credit taken outside of Biology (e.g., CHEM, ENVS, etc.) may not be counted for elective credit without prior approval from the Program Director; courses being applied for Science Elective Credit in departments outside of the college (e.g., courses being taught through the Curry School) similarly require approval by the Program Director.

    Science electives should be chosen based on the student's interests and relevance to their proposed career path. Students are strongly advised to take science elective courses that deal as directly with their thesis research topics as possible. If students have questions about the relevance or applicability of courses they should consult with the Program Director and their thesis advisor.

  3. Required Third Year Coursework in Public Health Sciences:

    Fall Term: PHS 4050 Public Health Policy
         or an approved equivalent course designated by the program

    Spring Term: PHS 3130 Introduction to Public Health Research Methods
         or approved equivalent course designated by the program

    Human Biology majors are required to complete PHS 4050 and PHS 3130 during their third year, or an approved (designated) alternative set of classes being offered in their place. PHS 4050 and PHS 3130 are only offered in the Fall and Spring semesters, respectively, so students need to plan their schedule accordingly.

  4. Fourth Year Capstone Seminar Series and Thesis Research (two semesters each):

    Fall Semester: HBIO 4810 Capstone Seminar in Human Biology I (2 hours)
                            HBIO 4998 Thesis Research in Human Biology I (2 Credit)

    Spring Semester: HBIO 4820 Capstone Seminar in Human Biology II (2 hours)
                                HBIO 4999 Thesis Research in Human Biology II (2 Credit)

    All Fourth Year Human Biology majors are required to be enrolled in and successfully complete both fall and spring semesters of the Capstone Seminar in Human Biology (HBIO 4810 and HBIO 4820, respectively) and two semesters of thesis research under faculty supervision (HBIO 4998 and HBIO 4999, respectively). All semesters of HBIO 4810, HBIO 4820, HBIO 4998, and HBIO 4999 are graded credit.

  5. Required Humanities Elective Credits: (Three courses)

    Majors are required to complete three 3000-level or higher courses from the humanities and social sciences. Courses used to fulfill this requirement are relevant to bioethics, healthcare economics, etc. A wide variety of courses are available that could potentially fulfill this area, but those dealing with bioethics, health economics, global health policy, etc., are preferred.

    When in doubt about the applicability of a course to fulfilling this requirement it is best to seek approval from the Program Director in order to assure that the credits will count toward the degree.

    A number of 3000 to 5000-level Public Health Sciences courses can also be used to fulfill this requirement.

    Examples of courses that could be taken include, but are not limited to, the following: PHIL 3590 Research Ethics, RELG 3860 Human Bodies and Parts as Property, PHIL 4530 Ethics in Human Reproduction, ECON 4160 Economics of Health Care, PHIL 3650 Justice and Health Care, or SOC 4260 Health Care Systems.

Independent Research in Human Biology (Optional credits -- Third Year only)

Students carrying out independent research related to their thesis in the Third Year can sign up for credit by enrolling in the following classes:

          Independent Research in Human Biology HBIO 4950 (2 credits per semester)

          Independent Research in Human Biology HBIO 4960 (2 credits per semester)

Note: These classes do not replace the fourth year HBIO 4998, 4999 Thesis research requirements or science elective credits.

General Prerequisite Classes:

Students entering the Human Biology Distinguished Major Program should have completed the following courses:

Majors are required to complete two semesters of introductory biology (BIOL 2100 & BIOL 2200) or have received AP credit for BIOL 2100 & 2200 (i.e., a score of 5 on the AP Biology examination) or at least a 6 on upper-level examinations in the International Baccalaureate Program).

Majors are required to complete two semesters of introductory chemistry with lab. The chemistry requirement may be satisfied by completing CHEM 1410,1420, 1411, and 1421, or CHEM 1810,1820,1811, and 1821, or CHEM 1610, 1620, 1611, and 1621. Students with AP chemistry credit for 1410 and 1420 must still complete the laboratory courses (1411 plus 1421 or 1811 plus 1821 or 1611 plus 1621, or two higher level lab courses). Students planning a career in the biological sciences are also strongly advised to take two semesters of organic chemistry with lab.

Majors are required to complete one course calculus or statistics. A number of courses are acceptable to meet this requirement including: MATH 1210, 1220, 1310, 1320, STAT 1110, 2559, 2120, SOC 3110, PSYC 3005, PSYC 3006, ECON 3710, ANTH 5589, EVSC 5030.

Students anticipating a career in the medical profession or biological sciences are strongly advised to take two semesters of physics with lab (PHYS 2010, 2020, 2030, and 2040). Advanced Placement (AP) credit can be applied to fulfill one or more of these prerequisites.

College Requirements

All Human Biology DMP students are required to meet the general requirements for graduation from the College of Arts and Sciences. Students are not exempt from foreign language, humanities, or writing requirements (excepting Echols students). Students must successfully complete the minimum 120 credit hours to graduate, of which 102 must be taken within the College of Arts and Sciences. Students are also subject to the same restrictions for taking classes outside of the College as all other students in the College of Arts and Sciences.

The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only. The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record represent the official repository for academic program requirements. These publications may be found at


Human w/DNA Shadow Image courtesy of U.S. Dept. of Energy Genomics:GTL Program