General advising for incoming 1st year Biology majors.

The Biology degree can prepare you for a wide range of careers. To see some of the directions our alumni have gone using their Biology degree search the #elonbiocareer hashtag on Facebook and Instagram Рyou have a lot of possibilities! Students strongly interested in science paths will typically take our Bachelor of Science Biology degree. Within this overall BS Biology degree we have 4 concentrations Р1) Foundations of Medical Sciences, Medical/Vet (FMS-MV), 2) Foundations of Medical Sciences, Allied Health (FMS-AH), 3) Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, and 4) Integrative Biology.  Each of these concentrations steer you towards and give you credit towards courses that you would be likely to take anyways in preparation for your next step post-Elon. Bachelor of Arts degrees in Biology are great options for those looking for a broader experience at Elon. Learn more specifics about the Biology major possibilities in the Biology section of the course catalog.

In your first year it’s not critical that you know exactly which concentration you want – all the core courses that you need are all the same! Our suggestion is that you try to take the following courses by the end of your first year but there’s some flexibility:

  • Bio1112 Intro Cell (Fall or Spring) and corequisite Bio1113 lab
  • Bio1514¬†Biodiversity (Fall or Spring)
  • Chm1110 Chemistry I (Fall)
  • Chm1120 Chemistry II (Spring, Chm1110 is a prerequisite)
  • if you can fit it, it is helpful to take STS2120 Statistics in Application in this first year, but if need be that can wait until your 2nd year.

Other recommendations for 1st year students interested in being a Biology major

  • engage with the department through the student groups such as the Biology Club, or Lincoln PreHealth Society. This gets you connected with the department, your cohort, and other majors in their 2nd, 3rd, and 4th years who can be great resources for you. The events these groups put on will help you learn more about career paths you can follow and help you hone your major/track here at Elon. Our experience has been that students engaged in the department inevitably are more successful – probably because they are better informed and feel a part of the department!
  • follow and interact with the Biology Department on social media to learn about all the things happening. These social media feeds are our newsletters and can provide great insights into things you will be doing in different classes, new class offerings, study abroad opportunities for Bio majors, internships, student research, career panels, etc.
  • declare your major as Biology officially as soon as Academic Advising lets you (usually not until Spring). This allows us to connect you into the department officially with a Biology faculty advisor and gets you onto our email list. Your Elon1010 advisor is usually your first assigned advisor so you can talk to them about this. Elon1010 advisors are all awesome however if they are not Biology faculty members they may not know all the intricacies of being a Biology major (understandably). When you declare your major officially, choose the concentration that best fits what you think you’ll want to do. Don’t worry, the declared track isn’t set in stone, it just helps us guide you better – you can change it back and forth multiple times throughout your time here.
  • start educating yourself about all the great things you can do with a Biology degree. Taking a quick glance at the #elonbiocareer on Instagram will show you career updates from well over 100 of our alumni and is constantly being updated.
  • consider getting housing in one of the science-themed Living+Learning Communities for one or more of your years at Elon

Ready to look ahead? Go to our “General advising for 2nd year Biology majors” page


Q – I decided to be a Biology major late so am behind this recommended timeline – can I still fit everything in?

A – yes, there is definately some flexibility on this timeline! We recommend that you sit down with your advisor and come up with a good plan to make everything fit in your shortened time plan.

created 8/17/17 – ADI