Biology at Barnard
The mission of the Biology major is to provide students with a broad education in biology. To this end, students are offered a range of lecture courses that span the molecular, physiological, and ecological levels of organization. Students also complete laboratory courses that help them learn how to design and test hypotheses, use cutting edge equipment, and interpret data.
Meet Our Faculty!
Planning to declare a major in biology? As of spring 2022, in our department, students are assigned a major advisor but may suggest one on Slate if they are accepting advisees. The Associate Chair approves major declarations and will assign an advisor using Slate.
The Biology Department faculty and staff aim to provide students with a rigorous biological education in a supportive environment across the many areas of biology in which we specialize. We aim to help students develop scientific literacy through our lecture and laboratory courses as well as through well-rounded research experiences. By supporting faculty and student research, our department provides students with the opportunity to synthesize co-authored, peer-reviewed scientific publications.
Navigating the Major
Need help planning out your Biology major? Whether you want to pursue a General Biology major or specialize in one of our four tracks, the resources below will help guide you!
What We Offer
Biology explores the structure, function, and evolution of diverse living systems. It addresses some of the most important issues of our time—genetic engineering, stem cell research, obesity, cancer, and the effects of global warming. Majoring in Biology prepares students to pursue a career in research, teaching, or the allied health sciences. It is also relevant to careers as diverse as environmental policy, biotechnology, law, public health, and creative writing.
There are five possible ways to complete a major within Biology. A student can obtain a General Biology Major or may complete one of the four tracks to specialize in a level of Biological organization: Computational, Cellular & Molecular, Physiological & Organismal, or Ecological & Evolutionary.
Want to join our listserv to stay up-to-date with departmental news and events? Email the Department Administrator with your class year and request to join our email list today!
AY22–23 Course Offerings
Want to know what courses we're offering this year? Click on the link below to see our fall and spring courses!
Seminar & Coffee Hour Speaker Series
Created in the fall of 2020 and sponsored by the department's Anti-Racism Working Group, this Seminar & Coffee Hour Speaker Series hosted by the Barnard College Department of Biological Sciences aims to highlight and uplift the voices of BIPOC and other underrepresented STEM professionals. Our goal is to have distinguished scientists with diverse backgrounds and interests talk about their research as a way of inspiring our students to think broadly about their own futures.
Research in New York City
We strongly encourage students to get involved in research during the summer, academic year, or both. For many students, research is one of the most intellectually rewarding experiences at Barnard. In the summer, many students participate in the Summer Research Institute (SRI) and receive a stipend for their work, while during the academic year, they receive credit for their work.
The culmination of a yearlong research project by students enrolled in Guided Research & Seminar and Senior Thesis Research, this year's Symposium will showcase the work of 29 students presenting their findings across biological disciplines on Tuesday, May 3rd in the Diana Center Event Oval. Seniors will give 15-minute thesis presentations, followed by Guided Research students presenting lightning talks and posters. The program containing the Zoom link and a how-to-use Zoom guide are available at the link below for those joining virtually.
As part of a team of staff and faculty, Melissa E. Flores ’16 helped Barnard’s Biology Department redesign its curriculum to ensure inclusivity for students from all backgrounds. #BarnardCelebratesWomensHistoryMonth
The 2021 Gilliam fellow offers insight into her studies in pathobiology and shares how Barnard helped shape her career in lab-based scientific research. #BarnardYearOfScience