North Central College
Course Planning for the Life Sciences

Below are some sample four-year plans for biology and biochemistry majors. Use the tabs to see a plan which matches your situation, but remember that your plan should be designed based on your interests and future goals. You should discuss your plans with your academic advisor.

The tables below show how a transfer student may be able to complete a BA or BS in Biology in two or three years, depending on what science courses they have taken elsewhere. Each transfer case is unique, and students are encouraged to plan carefully in consultation with Biology faculty and their academic advisors; these basic plans are intended only to suggest possible ways to complete a degree in the minimum number of terms. These may not represent the best options for quality education for any given student.

Because transfer students enter with various amounts of credit for general education courses, only science courses are shown in the tables below. We caution that junior-college or community-college courses are usually not the equivalent of rigorous college science courses, and transfer students from these schools may find they do not have the same background or skills as students who have taken college science.

Options for students with no transfer credit in BIOL or CHEM
BS in Biology1
YearFallSpring
1 BIOL 195
CHEM 121
MATH 151
BIOL 210
CHEM 122
MATH 152
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
2 BIOL 220
CHEM 251 or PHYS 131
BIOL 230
BIOL 240 (2 cr)
CHEM 252 or PHYS 132
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
3 300-level BIOL
300-level BIOL
PHYS 131 or CHEM 251
CHEM 310
BIOL Capstone
300-level BIOL
BIOL 490 (1 cr)
PHYS 132 or CHM 252
BA in Biology2
YearFallSpring
1 BIOL 195
CHEM 121
BIOL 210
CHEM 122
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
2 BIOL 220
CHEM 251 or PHYS 131
BIOL 201
BIOL 230
BIOL 240 (2 cr)
BIOL 202
CHEM 252 or PHYS 132
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
3 300-level BIOL
300-level BIOL
PHIL 213, SOAR 215,
    or KINE 230 or 300
BIOL Capstone
BIOL 490 (1 cr)
BS or BA in Biochemistry3
YearFallSpring
1 BIOL 195
CHEM 121
MATH 151
BIOL 210
CHEM 122
2 CHEM 251
CHEM 391 (1 cr)
BIOL 230
CHEM 252
CHEM 392 (1 cr)
3 BIOL 360
BCHM 365
CHEM 310
PHYS 131
BCHM 465
CHEM 341 or 342
PHYS 132
CHEM 493 (1 cr)
Options for students with credit for a year of CHEM
BS in Biology1
YearFallSpring
1 BIOL 195
CHEM 251
MATH 151
BIOL 210
CHEM 252
MATH 152
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
2 BIOL 220
PHYS 131
BIOL 230
BIOL 240 (2 cr)
PHYS 132
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
3 300-level BIOL
300-level BIOL
CHEM 310
BIOL Capstone
300-level BIOL
BIOL 490 (1 cr)
BA in Biology2
YearFallSpring
1 BIOL 195
CHEM 251 or PHYS 131
BIOL 210
CHEM 252 or PHYS 132
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
2 BIOL 220
BIOL 201
PHIL 213, SOAR 215,
    or KINE 230 or 300
BIOL 230
BIOL 240 (2 cr)
BIOL 202
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
3 300-level BIOL
300-level BIOL
BIOL Capstone
BIOL 490 (1 cr)
BS or BA in Biochemistry3
YearFallSpring
1 BIOL 195
CHEM 251
MATH 151
BIOL 210
CHEM 252
2 BCHM 365
PHYS 131
CHEM 391 (1 cr)
BIOL 230
PHYS 132
CHEM 392 (1 cr)
3 BIOL 360
CHEM 310
BCHM 465
CHEM 341 or 342
CHEM 493 (1 cr)
Options for students with credit for a year of CHEM and either genetics or cell biology
BS in Biology1
YearFallSpring
1 BIOL 195
BIOL 220
CHEM 251
MATH 151
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
BIOL 210 or 230
BIOL 240 (2cr)
CHEM 252
MATH 152
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
2 300-level BIOL
300-level BIOL
PHYS 131
CHEM 310
BIOL Capstone
300-level BIOL
BIOL 490 (1 cr)
PHYS 132
BA in Biology2
YearFallSpring
1 BIOL 195
CHEM 251 or PHYS 131
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
BIOL 210 or 310
BIOL 240 (2cr)
CHEM 252 or PHYS 132
BIOL 290 (0 cr)
2 300-level BIOL
300-level BIOL
PHIL 213, SOAR 215,
    or KINE 230 or 300
BIOL Capstone
BIOL 490 (1 cr)
BS or BA in Biochemistry3
YearFallSpring
1 BIOL 195
CHEM 251
MATH 151
BIOL 210 or 230
CHEM 252
2 BIOL 360
BCHM 365
CHEM 310
PHYS 131
BCHM 465
CHEM 341 or 342
PHYS 132
CHEM 493 (1 cr)

Research experience is required for all BIOL majors. The 400-level Capstone courses (BIOL 410 or 450 or BCHM 465) have an independent research project as the laboratory, and presenting this project in seminar meets the research requirement. Students interested in research careers are encouraged to do summer research or independent study or to investigate additional research opportunities.

Notes:

1Courses shown are for the Biological Science track; for the Biomedical Science track, substitute BCHM 365 for one 300-level Biology course and add BIOL 201 & 202 and one of PHIL 213, SOAR 215, or KINE 230 or 300; MATH 152 is not required.

2Courses shown are for the Health Professions track; the Biology Professions track does not require BIOL 201 or 202, organic chemistry, physics, or a PHIL/SOAR/KINE course, but requires a second major.

3The BS degree requires three additional advanced courses in biology or chemistry not shown here; see the Biochemistry page for more details.