Our program offers opportunities for research and study using the latest technology and equipment, in the lab or in the field. In faraway tropical rainforests and coral reef habitats or New Hampshire’s own lakes and forests, PSU students work hands-on with faculty members to answer some of life’s toughest questions.
The BA program in Biology is a broad overview of the principles of biology and the functions of biological systems with supportive courses in mathematics, physics, and chemistry. It can be used to fulfill the goals of students primarily interested in biology or those who plan to go on to professional programs or graduate degrees in the biological sciences. For the latter case, it should be noted that some professional/graduate schools require a full year each of organic chemistry, physics, and calculus; this program is less restrictive. Thus, students should work closely with their academic advisor to plan their coursework.
Biological Sciences Honors Program
The Department of Biological Sciences encourages eligible students to develop an Honors research project working with an individual faculty member. A Biology Faculty Advisor will serve as a research mentor throughout the process, but the student is responsible for the design, data collection, analysis, and writing required to complete and communicate the results of the project. Students must understand that faculty can more readily advise Honors projects that integrate with their existing research interests. The Honors project can assist students wishing to pursue admission to competitive graduate and professional programs in biological sciences. Along with letters of recommendation, solid grade point average and Graduate Record Exam scores, participating in research is an important criterion such programs use to select students.
Requirements for Admission to the Honors Program
- 3.25 minimum grade point average
- completion of at least 45 credit hours
- completion of Biological Science I (BI 1110) and Biological Science II (BI 1120) or their equivalents and at least one 3000/4000 level Biology course that involves a research project, or approval of the faculty sponsor
- availability and support of a Faculty Advisor
- submission of an Honors Application to the Department of Biological Sciences. The Application consists of a research proposal that is developed with the guidance and approval of a Faculty Advisor and contains a literature review, hypotheses, methods (including a budget), and references (formatted according to discipline-specific standards)
- approval of the Honors Application by the Biological Sciences faculty.
Completing the Program
- completion of four credits of Undergraduate Research (BI 4950)
- presentation of the research findings
- submission of a final paper (in discipline-specific format) to the Department of Biological Sciences by May 1 of the year Honors distinction is sought
- presentation of the results at an appropriate scientific conference or seminar series, either at PSU or in the New England region
- overall approval of both the final paper and the presentation from the Biological Science faculty
- maintenance of a 3.25 minimum grade point average.