BS in Biological Science (Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation)

Units required for Major: 73-85, includes units of study in chosen concentration (see below).

Program Description

The concentration in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation is designed for students interested in wildlife management conservation biology, or pursuing graduate study in ecological and evolutionary approaches in the Biological Sciences. By choosing the Conservation Biology advising track, students get necessary training for a career working with local, state, or federal agencies as a biologist or environmental scientist. The Ecology and Evolution advising track is designed to prepare students for graduate study in the Biological Sciences.

Pre-Major Requirements

The Biological Sciences program at Sacramento State is one of the most highly sought after programs in Northern California. Due to the large number of applications, the program is now officially impacted. Students wishing to become Biological Science majors must complete a series of required lower division and then must apply for admission to the program. Check the department website for requirements, and it is highly recommended that interested students speak with an advisor at the Natural Sciences Advising Center (NSAC) as soon as possible.

Freshmen interested in the major are admitted as pre-Biological Science majors.

To change to the Biological Sciences major, pre-major students are required to complete the following courses and grade requirements and submit a Declaration of Major form to the Biological Science Department Office along with transcript copies.

  1. Completion of the following lower division "pre-major" courses with a minimum "C" or better. Only first or second attempt will be considered:
BIO 1Biodiversity, Evolution and Ecology5
BIO 2Cells, Molecules and Genes5
CHEM 1AGeneral Chemistry I5
STAT 1Introduction to Statistics3
ENGL 5Accelerated Academic Literacies3
  1. Overall GPA of 2.5 based on the pre-major courses listed above.
  2. Minimum of 30 units completed at the college level.

Program Requirements

Required Lower Division Core Courses (37-41 Units)
BIO 1Biodiversity, Evolution and Ecology5
BIO 2Cells, Molecules and Genes5
CHEM 1AGeneral Chemistry I5
CHEM 1BGeneral Chemistry II5
Select one of the following:3 - 6
Organic Chemistry Lecture--Brief Course 1
Organic Chemistry Lecture I
Organic Chemistry Lecture II
Select one of the following:3 - 4
Calculus I for the Social and Life Sciences
Calculus I
PHYS 5AGeneral Physics: Mechanics, Heat, Sound4
PHYS 5BGeneral Physics: Light, Electricity and Magnetism, Modern Physics4
STAT 1Introduction to Statistics3
Required Upper Division Core Courses (6 Units)
BIO 100Introduction to Scientific Analysis2
BIO 184General Genetics4
Concentration (30-38 Units)
Select from the following concentrations:30 - 38
General Biology
Biomedical Sciences
Cell and Molecular Biology
Clinical Laboratory Sciences
Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation
Forensic Biology
Total Units73-85

CHEM 24 and CHEM 124 may be taken in lieu of CHEM 20. (CHEM 124 is not counted toward the 36 upper division unit requirement in the major except in the Biomedical Sciences Concentration.)


  • Pre-Health Professional students should take the Chemistry and Math requirements as stated in the Pre-Health Professional Program section of this catalog.
  • With approval, up to six units of upper division coursework from related fields may be applied as electives in the major.
  • No more than 2 units from the following combined can be applied to the Biological Sciences upper division major requirement.
    BIO 195Biological Internship1 - 2
    BIO 197ALaboratory Teaching Assistant1 - 2
    BIO 197BLaboratory Techniques1 - 2
    BIO 197CCo-curricular Activities in Biology1 - 2
    BIO 199AIntroductory Undergraduate Research1 - 2
    BIO 199BDirected Readings1 - 2

Concentration in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation

Required Courses (14 Units)
BIO 160General Ecology3
BIO 167Quantitative Methods in Biology3
BIO 178Molecular Ecology4
BIO/ENVS 186BEcological and Environmental Issues Seminar1
BIO 188Evolution3
Elective Courses (16 Units)
Select one of the following Structure and Function electives:3
Physiology of Human Reproduction
Advanced Human Anatomy
Comparative Vertebrate Morphology
Developmental Biology
Plant Anatomy and Physiology
Systemic Physiology
Cardiovascular, Respiratory and Renal Physiology
Select three of the following Ecology, Evolution, and Biodiversity electives: 19
Part A: Biodiversity Electives
Plants and Civilization
Plant Taxonomy
The Diversity of Microorganisms
Human Parasitology
General Entomology
Ichthyology: The Study of Fishes
Amphibians and Reptiles: An Introduction to Herpetology
Part B: Ecology and Evolution Electives
Evolution and Speciation in Flowering Plants
Natural Resource Conservation
Animal Behavior
Principles of Fisheries Biology
Conservation Biology & Wildlife Management
Select additional upper division elective courses in consultation with an advisor to total 16 upper division elective units4
Total Units30

At least one course must be from Part A and one course from Part B (each course must be a minimum of 3 units).