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Department of Biology

Biology Honors Program

Honors in Biology:

Departmental Honors Coordinator: Dr. Joel Slade


The Department of Biology strives to be a regional and national leader in biology research and education. We aim to improve student success by offering a diverse curriculum, and by developing innovative instructional techniques. We aim to prepare our students for careers in science and education by offering active student involvement in externally funded collaborative and integrative biological research programs.  The honors program will elevate the research opportunities for upper-division students.


The Department of Biology focuses on innovative student-centered strategies, research-focused teaching, and faculty mentoring to advance student success. The honors program will provide motivated upper-division students with the opportunity to explore biology through enhanced educational study and engagement with their intellectual peers.


Build a strong undergraduate research program anchored by honors student engagement

Develop a foundation for undergraduate success through peer mentoring and instruction in introductory biology courses

Provide creative and scholarly upper-division students with opportunities to maximize their educational pursuits


Program Overview:

Students will apply for the Honors program in the Fall semester when they have 4 semesters remaining.


Fall Semester 1

Students identify research mentor 

Students submit applications  (Biology Honors Application)

Faculty review applications and select students

Students notified of acceptance to honors program


Spring Semester 2

BIOL 111H – Research Methods (1 unit)

Develop plan for honors thesis

Submit honors thesis plan to council for approval


Fall Semester 3

BIOL 112H – Undergraduate Peer Instruction (PI) Training (1 unit)

Student submits mid-term and end of term report on progress

Fulfill Peer instruction requirement


Spring Semester 4 

BIOL 113H – Biology Honors Colloquium (1 unit)

Participate in invitation of speakers

Introduce speakers

Present project at end of semester to students and faculty

Complete Honors Thesis (199H – 3 units)