Major/Minor Requirements

Biological Sciences Major

[Nine courses in Biology, seven of which must be taken at Wellesley; including one 300-level laboratory course; two courses in Chemistry]

See Course Catalog for more information. 

See Minor Requirements for Biology Minor Requirements. 

Introductory BiologyMicroscope field and student working in the background


Intermediate Level Biology

Four courses, with at least one from each of the following three groups:
Group I:   Cellular Biology 219, 220
Group II:   Systems Biology 203, 207, 216
Group III:   Community Biology 201, 202, 204, 209, 210, 214, BISC/ES 247
Cannot include Independent Research (250, 250H)

Upper Level Biology

At least two units at the 300 level, including at least one laboratory course.
Cannot include independent research (350, 350H, 355, 360, 365, 370)


Two courses: Chem 105, 105P, 116, 120 or higher

Recommended Courses:

Four courses in chemistry, including 1 semester in organic chemistry
Those applying to graduate school may need to include physical chemistry or biochemistry
Two courses in physics
Two courses in math: statistics, calculus
Independent Research is strongly recommended
*or the equivalent (see catalog and/or contact Dept. Chair)
A major in Biological Sciences includes: nine biological sciences courses, at least seven of which must be taken at Wellesley, plus two units of college chemistry (CHEM 105 or higher). BISC 110 and 111 or their equivalent are required for the major. Four 200-level courses are required, with at least one course from each of the following three groups: cell biology (219, 220); systems biology (203, 207, 216); and community biology (201, 202, 204, 209, 210, 214, BISC/ES 247). A minimum of two 300-level courses are also required for the major. One of these courses, exclusive of 350, 355, 360, 365, or 370, must include laboratory. The ninth course can be any BISC course in addition to those requirements listed above. Additional chemistry beyond the two required units is strongly recommended or required for certain 300-level courses. BISC 250, 250H, 350, 350H, 355, 360, 365, and 370 do not count toward the minimum major.
BISC 101, 103, 104, 105, 108, 109 and 198 count toward the minimum major in Biological Sciences, and may also be used to fulfill the College distribution requirements; 108 and 109 as laboratory sciences; 104 and 105 as nonlaboratory science courses. BISC 109, 111, 111T, 113, 113Y, 198 and 201 fulfill the Quantitative Reasoning overlay course requirement.