Considerations for Students Intending to Major in the Sciences
Many courses in math and the sciences are two-part courses, with the first course in a sequence offered only in the fall, and the second part offered only in the spring. Examples of such sequences are:
- CHEM 150 or 151/Principles of Chemistry I (Fall only); CHEM 160/Principles of Chemistry II (Spring only)
- MATH 150/Calculus & Analytic Geometry I (Fall only); MATH 151/Calculus & Analytic Geometry II (Spring only)
- PHYS 111/Introductory Physics I (Fall only); PHYS 112 Introductory Physics II (Spring only) [not intended for potential physics majors]
- PHYS 11501/University Physics I (Fall only); PHYS 12 University Physics II (Spring only) [required for physics majors; MATH 150 or equivalent is a co/prerequisite]
In addition, other courses, while not sequenced, are only offered in the fall or spring. Examples of these courses are:
- BIOL 150/ Ecology & Evolution (Fall only)
- NEUR 101/ Introduction to Neuroscience
- BIOL 160/ Diversity of Life (Spring only)
Suggested courses for specific majors/minors, as well as for those who are premed/pre-health can be found at the following location: Intended Major/Minor
Prospective Neuroscience Majors
Students interested in majoring in neuroscience should review the changes to the neuroscience major.
These students should register for both NEUR 101 and CHEM 150/151 in the fall. Prospective majors should email their interest to Dr. Roger Knowles (firstname.lastname@example.org) in order to be moved off the waitlist. Students undecided between biology and neuroscience can choose either BIOL 150 or NEUR 101, along with CHEM 150, in the fall.
- Chemistry–required (taken at Orientation)
- Biology–optional for students–mostly for students earning AP credits in Biology or whose background knowledge is exceptional. Taken at Orientation–if passed, the student only takes BIOL 150L and is waived from BIOL 150 lecture.
Math Requirements for Science Students
- Neuroscience—MATH 117/Statistics
- Biochemistry and Chemistry—MATH 150,151/ Calculus I and II
- Biology–no specific math required, although MATH 117 and/or MATH 7150may be taken to fulfill major requirements
- Physics—MATH 150,151/ Calculus I and II, MATH 250,315
- Pre-Med—Statistics is strongly recommended for medical school, whereas Calculus is not essential for medical school admission and calculus-based physics is not required for the MCAT.
- Students taking two lab sciences may wish to postpone math until their second semester or second year, unless they have a strong background in math and science (e.g. AP and/or Honors courses in high school).
- Students taking BIOL 150, CHEM 150, PHYS 111, and PHYS 150 must all register for a corresponding lab section (PHYS 111 and PHYS 150 share a lab: PHYS 113L). You may choose the lab that best fits your schedule; however, your chances of getting into a particular lab section are greatest if you register for a section where there are still seats available or the waitlist is small or nonexistent (look under the course offerings and find your lab section: “MAX:” tells you the number of seats available; “USED:” tells you the number of students already enrolled; “WAIT:” tells you the number of students currently on the waitlist).
- Students taking MATH 150 must also register for a recitation section; see note for labs above about getting into a particular section.
- It is not recommended that students take MATH 117/Statistics in the fall of their first year.
- If students wish to take only ONE science in their first semester, it should be CHEM 150/150L, since CHEM 150/160 courses are pre-reqs for other science classes, including BIOL 250/Molecular & Cellular Biology. Students do not need BIOL 150 to take BIOL 160 in the spring.