2017-2018 Catalog


Biology Program Learning Outcomes

College of Natural and Behavioral Sciences

Department of Biology

Bachelor of Arts

Degree Roadmap

Bachelor of Science

Degree Roadmaps

Cellular and Molecular Biology Option

Ecology and Environmental Biology Option

Microbiology Option




Subject Matter Preparation Program

Specific Biological Sciences Subject Matter Authorization 

Master of Science


John Thomlinson, Department Chair

Fang Wang, Graduate Program Coordinator

H.K. Choi, Helen Chun, Karin Kram, Thomas Landefeld, Terrence McGlynn, Sonal Singhal, Davood Soleymani, Kathryn Theiss, John Thomlinson, Fang Wang
Department Office: NSM A-143, (310) 243-3381
Emeriti Faculty
David E. Brest, Lois W. Chi, Evelyn Tutt Childress, Robert V. Giacosie, Carol Guze, Catherine Jacobs, Gene A. Kalland, Getachew Kidane, Richard Kuramoto, Francis McCarthy, Laura M. Phillips, John Roberts, Laura Robles

Program Description

The Biology Program at CSU Dominguez Hills is designed to provide students with intensive, progressive and balanced learning experiences in cell and molecular biology, organismal biology, population and community biology, and environmental science.
The Biology Department offers students seven programs from which to choose: 1) An undergraduate program which awards the Bachelor of Arts Degree; 2) Three undergraduate major options that award the Bachelor of Science Degree: a Cellular and Molecular Biology Option, an Ecology and Environmental Biology Option and a Microbiology Option; 3) Two minor programs: a General Minor and a Microbiology Minor; 4) A Biological Science Subject Matter Preparation Program for students pursuing a secondary teaching credential; 5) A graduate program which awards the Master of Science Degree.


The most important feature of the Biology Department is its excellent faculty, all members of which hold the doctorate. They are dedicated to excellence in teaching and are active in basic and applied research and other scholarly activities. The department currently has more than $1.5 million in private foundation, federal and international research grants. Another attractive feature of the department is its small class size. This allows students to interact frequently and effectively with instructors both within and outside of class. It also permits instructors to easily identify students in need of additional assistance, and to supply such assistance.
The Biology Department's teaching and research facilities are modern and well equipped. Special facilities and equipment that are available for student use include a tissue culture laboratory, controlled temperature rooms, a greenhouse and a nature preserve. In addition to on-campus facilities, students may study marine biology and desert biology through the use of facilities available in the Southern California Ocean Studies Consortium and the Desert Studies Consortium. Excellent computer and library facilities also are available.
Since the Biology faculty maintains several diverse research programs that are well supported with public and private funds, the department can provide both undergraduate and graduate students with opportunities to actively participate in research. Biology students have been successful, not only in conducting research, but in presenting reports at scientific meetings, publishing their findings and in receiving national recognition for the high quality of their work.

Academic Advisement

The Biology Department requires that each semester prior to or during registration, students meet with their biology advisor to review their progress, select new courses, update their advisement file (departmental files are maintained for all majors and graduate students), and to discuss any special problems they may have encountered.


Students who plan to enter the biology program directly from high school should prepare by completing four years of English, including composition; algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and pre-calculus if available; and at least one year each of biology, chemistry and physics.

Students transferring from a community college should have completed one semester of calculus or, if not taken in high school, algebra, geometry and trigonometry, and one year each of introductory chemistry and biology (3 semester course) designed for the transfer major.

Career Possibilities

A student in the Biology Department will be prepared to pursue a variety of career opportunities, depending on the curricular program chosen. An undergraduate major may choose any of the options. The Cellular and Molecular Biology Option can fulfill the major entrance requirements for professional schools of medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, pharmacy, optometry, podiatry and medical technology, or prepare the student for further graduate study in biology. Biology graduates from CSU Dominguez Hills have competed successfully for admission to professional and graduate schools in California and elsewhere. Students also may use the Cellular and Molecular Biology Option to prepare for careers in teaching, research, government, academia or the biotechnology industry. The Ecology and Environmental Biology option will prepare students for graduate studies or careers with federal, state, and local agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and consultants and careers in teaching, among others. The Microbiology Option provides training in microbiology, medical microbiology, immunology and related courses (virology, mycology and parasitology) for students interested in a career in applied biology, biomedical research or allied fields.
Students may prepare for a career in teaching science at the secondary level (junior high or high school) by completing an approved "Subject Matter Preparation Program." Completion of such a program is the first step in meeting the state requirements for a teaching credential. Interested students should consult the departmentally designated advisor for current information.

The Master of Science program in Biology will provide students with an in-depth background suitable for pursuing a career in biological research, teaching or in a related field such as public health, psychology and human services. Students may develop a program of courses and research that is tailor-made to their individual needs within the areas of expertise of their advising faculty. The graduate program also can establish a strong foundation for professional training in medicine, dentistry, paramedical areas and Ph.D. programs.

Graduation with Honors An undergraduate student may be a candidate for graduation with Honors in Biology provided the following criteria are satisfied:

A minimum of 36 units in residence at CSU Dominguez Hills; A minimum grade point average of 3.5 in all courses used to satisfy the upper division requirements in the major; Recommendation by the Biology Department faculty.

Students who achieve Honors in Biology will have the information recorded on their transcripts and diplomas.