Program: B.S., Biology

Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Option

Program Description

The Ecology and Evolutionary Biology option of the B.S. degree prepares graduates for employment in positions such as ecologist or wildlife preserve manager; for positions with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Bureau of Land Management, National or State Parks, and other government agencies and private organizations; or for consulting positions in formulating environmental impact reports. A modified version of this option is appropriate for students seeking a teaching credential (see Credential Programs section of this Catalog and the disclosure statement regarding Programs Leading to Licensure and Credentialing). This option also prepares the student for advanced graduate study.

Program Requirements

Each student pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree must complete the designated core program, plus all required courses and the selective program of one of the options.

A. Core Requirements for All B.S. Options

1. Lower Division Courses (27 units)

BIOL 106 Biological Principles I (3)
BIOL 106L Biological Principles I Lab (1)
BIOL 107 Biological Principles II (3)
BIOL 107L Biological Principles II and Lab (1)
CHEM 101 General Chemistry I (3)
CHEM 101D Problem Solving in General Chemistry I (1)
CHEM 101L General Chemistry I Lab (1)
CHEM 102 General Chemistry II (3)
CHEM 102D Problem Solving in General Chemistry II (1)
CHEM 102L General Chemistry II Lab (1)
MATH 255A Calculus for the Life Sciences I (3)
PHYS 100A General Physics I (3)
PHYS 100B General Physics II (3)

2. Upper Division Courses (9 units)

BIOL 322 Evolutionary Biology (3)
BIOL 360 Genetics (3)
BIOL 380 Cell Biology (3)

B. Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Option Requirements

Areas of interest: Before electing upper division courses in the Selective Program, each student should consult an advisor in his or her area of interest to select a program of courses appropriate to the student’s goals.

1. Required Courses (7-13 units)

BIOL 330/L Design and Analysis of Experiments and Lab (2/1)
or BIOL 502/BIOL 502L Biometry and Lab (3/1)

CHEM 235/L Introductory Organic Chemistry and Lab (3/1)
or CHEM 333/L and CHEM 333D and CHEM 334/L Principles of Organic Chemistry I and II and Labs (3/1/1) and (3/1)

2. Selective Program (32 units)

Select an additional 32 units at the upper division level from the following lists.

a. Ecology (11-13 units)
Choose three from the following:

BIOL 407/L/BIOL 492N Plant Ecology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)*
BIOL 414/L/BIOL 492A Avian Ecology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)**
BIOL 422/L Physiological Ecology and Lab (2/2)
BIOL 423/BIOL 492F Field Ecology/Field Studies (2/2)
BIOL 424/L/BIOL 492G Ecological Modeling and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 426/L/BIOL 492P Biology of Deserts and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 427/L/BIOL 492H Principles of Ecology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 428/L/BIOL 492W Wildlife Ecology and Management and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 429/L/BIOL 492I Marine Ecology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 439/L/BIOL 492S Tropical Ecology and Conservation and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/2)
BIOL 448/BIOL 492U Tropical Biodiversity/Field Studies (2/1)
BIOL 453/L/BIOL 492Z Behavioral Ecology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 456/BIOL 492O Conservation Biology/Field Studies (3/1)

b. Botany (4-5 units)
Choose one from the following:

BIOL 316CS/LCS Plant Biology and Lab (2/2)
BIOL 403/L Plant Morphology and Lab (2/2)
BIOL 404/L/BIOL 492Y Phycology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 406/L/BIOL 492K Flowering Plant Systematics and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 407/L/BIOL 492N Plant Ecology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)*
BIOL 409/L/BIOL 492J Non-Flowering Plants and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 438/L/BIOL 492R Tropical Botany and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/2)
BIOL 481/L Plant Physiology and Lab (2/2)

c. Zoology (3-5 units)
Choose one from the following:

BIOL 312/L/BIOL 392F Vertebrate Biology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 313/L/BIOL 392B Invertebrate Zoology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 412/L/BIOL 492E Herpetology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 413/L/BIOL 492AA Entomology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 414/L/BIOL 492A Avian Ecology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)**
BIOL 415/L/BIOL 492M Mammalogy and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 425 Animal Behavior (3)***
BIOL 430/L/BIOL 492BB Ichthyology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)
BIOL 433/L Biology of Marine Tetrapods and Lab (2/1)
BIOL 446/L/BIOL 492T Biology of Tropical Vertebrates and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/2)

*Plant Ecology (BIOL 407/L/BIOL 492N) may be used to fulfill the Botany requirement or the Ecology requirement, but not both.
**Avian Ecology (BIOL 414/L/BIOL 492A) may be used to fulfill the Zoology requirement or the Ecology requirement, but not both.
***An optional field course in animal behavior, BIOL 492D, is listed under electives.

d. Electives (9-14 units)
  1. Select one additional course from the Botany or Zoology sections above.
  2. Select additional courses from the Ecology, Botany or Zoology sections above or from the courses listed below for a total of 32 units at the upper division level in the Selective Program. Other courses may be substituted with the approval of an Environmental Biology advisor.

BIOL 315/L Principles of Microbiology and Lab (2/2)

BIOL 419/L/BIOL 492C Microbial Ecology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)

BIOL 421/L/BIOL 492B Marine Biology and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)

BIOL 427A/AL/BIOL 492L Biology of Pelagic Organisms and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)

BIOL 435/L Parasitology and Lab (2/2)

BIOL 437/L/BIOL 492V Biology of Fungi and Lab/Field Studies (2/1/1)

BIOL 449 Seminars on Topics in Tropical Biology (3)

BIOL 452/L Molecular Markers in Evolutionary Studies and Lab (2/2)

BIOL 490BIOL 495BIOL 499, BIOL 526 (no more than 3 units combined)

BIOL 492D Animal Behavior Field Studies (1)

GEOL 508/L Invertebrate Paleontology and Lab (3/1)
or GEOL 513/L Micropaleontology and Lab (2/2)

BIOL 492D requires concurrent enrollment in BIOL 425; see listing under Zoology.

C. General Education (48 units)

Undergraduate students must complete 48 units of General Education as described in this Catalog, including 3 units of coursework meeting the Ethnic Studies (ES) graduation requirement.

12 units are satisfied by the following courses in the major: CHEM 101 satisfies B1 Physical Science; BIOL 106 satisfies B2 Life Science; BIOL 106L satisfies B3 Science Laboratory Activity; MATH 255A fulfills Basic Skills B4 Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning; and BIOL 360 satisfies B5 Scientific Inquiry and Quantitative Reasoning.

Total Units in the Major/Option: 75-81

General Education Units: 36

Additional Units: 3-9

Total Units Required for the B.S. Degree: 120


Department of Biology
Chair: Cheryl Courtney-Hogue
Chaparral Hall (CR) 5101
(818) 677-3356

Program Learning Outcomes

Students receiving a Bachelor of Science in Biology will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of the structure and metabolism of cells, the transmission and expression of genetic information, and the immediate and long-term (evolutionary) consequences of interactions between organisms and their environment.
  2. Demonstrate specialized knowledge in one or more disciplines of biology.
  3. Be aware of and/or capable of using new and existing methods and technologies in these disciplines.
  4. Demonstrate facility in applying the methods of scientific inquiry, including observation, hypothesis testing, data collection and analysis.
  5. Engage the biology literature and to communicate scientific information verbally and/or in writing.