Feb 08, 2023
The general education, writing, foreign language and diversity requirements for a degree in the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences apply. All students will take foundational courses in biological sciences, chemistry, math, statistics and physics. The Ecology, Evolution and Environment emphasis empowers students with the experimental and theoretical tools required to understand the forces that drive and maintain biodiversity on the planet. This fundamental question spans many different hierarchies in biology – from genes and molecules, to organisms and populations, to species and ecosystems. How do all these interactions work, and what causes them to fail? The Ecology, Evolution and Environment curriculum was designed by active research faculty with an eye towards modern biological techniques and a strong emphasis on field biology. Ecology, Evolution and Environment students will be uniquely prepared to pursue a career in sustainability in addition to careers with a strong focus on ecology, evolution and environment in both the public and private sector.
Lower-Division BISC Core Courses (8 units)
Collateral Sciences Courses (32 units)
General Chemistry Requirement: 8 units
Organic Chemistry Requirement: 8 units
Calculus Requirement: 4 units
Statistics Requirement: 4 units
Physics Requirement: 8 units
Introduction to Research-Active Faculty (1 to 2 units)
Enroll in one or both courses.
Upper-Division Core Courses (12 units)
Research-Based Learning Requirement (2 units)
Ecology, Evolution and Environment Seminar Requirement (2 units)
Enroll in an emphasis-relevant section of the seminar course.
Ecology, Evolution and Environment Capstone Requirement (4 units)
Enroll in 4 units of BISC 490.
Upper-Division Electives (10 to 12 units)
Select three or four electives from the course options listed below.
Scholarship in Major Subject
The department requires that students receive a grade no lower than C- in the five lower- and upper-division core courses. Students must maintain a 2.0 GPA in the upper-division course work required for the major, as well as an overall 2.0 GPA. All major core courses must be taken on a letter grade basis.
Honors Program in Biological Sciences
The department offers an honors program to outstanding students already pursuing studies for the BA or BS degree in Biological Sciences. This program offers students an opportunity to participate in undergraduate research, experience in writing an honors thesis summarizing the completed research, and experience in an honors seminar. Honors students are required to take two semesters of BISC 493x Honors Seminar (1 unit/ - semester) and one semester of BISC 494x Honors Thesis (2 units) in addition to fulfilling all requirements of the BA or BS degree. Honors students must also choose BISC 490x as one of their upper division electives. This program leads to the designation on the transcript of Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences with Honors.
Honors Admission Requirements
Students may apply to the department for admission to the honors program after having completed at least one year of work at USC with a minimum GPA of 3.5 in all science and math courses required for the major.
Honors Scholarship Requirements
For continuation in the honors programs, students must maintain a minimum GPA of 3.5 in the sciences and mathematics courses required for the major.