Biology, B.S.

Program Overview

Are you fascinated by the natural world and have always wondered why we are made the way we are? Do you have a desire to study life and all its physical properties, from the largest mammals to the smallest bacteria and viruses? With a Bachelor of Science in Biology, you can leverage your strengths in analysis, exploration, problem-solving, and the sciences into finding answers within life's complexities and intricacies.

At PLNU, you'll gain an in-depth understanding of this dynamic field, which will prepare you for graduate school and an endless range of occupations and specializations. Initial courses in biochemistry, organismal biology, and general chemistry introduce you to the processes, concepts, and theories of biology across a broad range of levels. Upper division courses like genetics, conservation ecology, microbiology, immunology, marine biology, and more will hone your critical thinking, knowledge, and quantitative skills that are essential for applying your education to a real-world setting.

PLNU also has a robust pre-health program to train and equip you for professions in medicine, dentistry, optometry, pharmacy, and veterinary medicine. Since 2004, over 90 percent of PLNU students who have applied to health professions schools have been admitted. Similarly, the acceptance rate for biology and chemistry students applying to graduate school programs (M.A., M.S., and Ph.D.) is over 95 percent. By offering rigorous courses alongside individualized support and guidance in the form of internships, pre-health advisors, laboratory classes, and more, you can be confident and prepared moving onto graduate and medical schools. 

Kris Koudelka headshot


Kris Koudelka, Ph.D.

Dr. Kris Koudelka, assistant professor of biology, spends his days working in the realm of the invisible. But, it’s this aspect of his work that forces him and his students to grow the most, offering opportunities to think critically, problem solve, and look at the world in different ways.

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Additionally, the Department of Biology offers five minor areas of study where you'll be able to take classes in other academic disciplines, like computational science or business. These minors offer the chance to specialize and gain in-depth, expert knowledge that will set you apart as you move onto a career in biology or graduate studies.

You will also be able to work side-by-side with passionate and knowledgeable professors within classroom labs and field experience outings. Some other unique hands-on learning opportunities available are faculty-assisted research projects, internships, and even co-authoring scholarly papers for national and international scientific journals. You'll also have access to sophisticated instrumentation and computational resources for use in courses and labs, all housed within our new state-of-the-art science center.

Course List


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Are you ready to take the next step to begin your PLNU journey? Whether you’re a high school senior, college transfer student, or international student, find out what we’re looking for in our applicants and how you can apply.

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Student Support

For most students, the transition into college life is one full of adjustments. There is the excitement of newfound freedoms, but also some uncertainty as you begin to make choices and take responsibility for your own future. 

At PLNU, we’re committed to supporting you — academically, professionally, spiritually, personally — so that you may be successful both in your time as a student and beyond. That’s why we offer a holistic support system that focuses on your unique experiences, particular needs, and personal and professional goals — resulting from our deep concern for you, our student.

With a focus on authentic relationships and personalized attention, our goal is to help transform you so you can follow your calling in your own career and life.

Student Support


Tanner Matthews Headshot

Student Profile

Tanner Matthews

PLNU doesn’t just give you the tools you need to get a job once you graduate; it teaches you how to be human, to ask questions, to never stop learning, to find comfort in your doubts, to seek truth, and to be a follower of Christ.

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Career Opportunities

Students with a Bachelor of Science in Biology leave PLNU prepared for graduate and health profession schools or careers in industry. PLNU biology graduates are also sought after for the ways they are able to confidently integrate and apply their faith, knowledge, and skill set into their work. Alumni have combined their passion for science and strong academic foundation into work opportunities in medicine, allied health, education, biotechnology, government, industry, and more.

David Cummings collecting water samples at the Tijuana Estuary at sunset


David Cummings, Ph.D.

Dr. David Cummings, PLNU professor of biology, has been making quite a bit of news for his research and discovery of antibiotic-resistance bacterial DNA in Southern California wetlands.

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A Bachelor of Science in Biology can lead to the following careers:

  • Laboratory Technician
  • Microbiologist
  • Pharmacologist
  • Medical and Health Services Manager
  • Science Educator
  • Biochemist
  • Cancer Researcher
  • Forensic Scientist
  • Research Scientist
  • Field Biologist
  • Doctor
  • Dentist
  • Pharmacist
  • Veterinarian
  • Optometrist
  • Physician's Assistant
Female Science Student

Women & STEM

Women are underrepresented in most science, technology, engineering, and math fields. What are the various reasons for why this might be the case?

Read More in the Viewpoint Online Magazine 

Department Faculty