Explore the living world. Prepare for graduate or health-related advanced degrees.

  • About this program

    Biology is the study of living organisms in both laboratory and field conditions. Students explore the living world and build their understanding of its complex interrelationships and the role of human beings within it.

    The program’s flexible design allows students to achieve their academic and professional goals. Students can earn their BA in biology while preparing for admission to graduate or professional programs in education, medical, dental, veterinary, physician assistant, pharmacy, and physical therapy.

    The program can also serve as a springboard to programs in the life sciences at UNH in Durham in majors such as microbiology, zoology, plant biology, wildlife management, environmental conservation, biochemistry and animal sciences.

    Employment opportunities in the public and private sectors include education, food, water, wastewater and other industrial laboratories, clinical laboratories, biotechnology, environmental research and monitoring and animal behavior.

    For more information contact Stephen Pugh, Program Coordinator at 603-641-4128 spugh@unh.edu; or contact the Office of Admissions.

  • Program of Study

    Students must complete a minimum of 128 credits and satisfy the University’s Discovery Program and foreign language requirements. BIOL 413, 414 may be used to satisfy the biological sciences Discovery requirement and CHEM 403, 404 may be used to satisfy the Physical Sciences Discovery requirement. PSYC 402 may be used to satisfy the Quantitative Reasoning Discovery requirement; however, students interested in graduate or professional programs would be encouraged to take MATH 425, Calculus I, or MATH 424b, Calculus for Life Sciences to satisfy the Quantitative Reasoning requirement.

    The UNH Manchester B.A. in Biological Sciences Program is structured with three levels of coursework.

    Biology Core Curriculum (9 courses, 37 credits)

    The biology core curriculum consists of five required biology courses
    BIOL 413-414, Principles of Biology I and II
    BMS 503, General Microbiology
    BIOL 541, General Ecology
    GEN 604, Principles of Genetics

    Two required chemistry courses
    CHEM 403-404, General Chemistry I and II

    One course in mathematics
    MATH 418, Analysis and Application of Functions, or
    MATH 425, Calculus I, or
    MATH 424b, Calculus for Life Sciences
    One course in statistics
    PSYC 402, Statistics in Psychology (other statistics courses such as BIOL 528 or BUS 430 may used to satisfy this requirement).

    Depending on their specific academic and career goals and in consultation with their advisor, students may elect to take additional supporting science courses such as CHEM 545/546, Organic Chemistry with lab (one semester); CHEM 651/653 - 652/654, Organic Chemistry I and II with lab (two semesters); BMCB 658/659, Biochemistry with lab; MATH 426 Calculus II; and Physics 407-408, General Physics I and II. These courses are often required for admission to medical, professional and other graduate programs.

    Self-Designed Concentration in Biology

    (4 courses, 16 credits)
    Students will select, in consultation with their advisor, four biology courses at the 600-700 level to be taken at UNH Manchester or UNH Durham.

  • Capstone

    The capstone experience will be fulfilled by taking the one-credit course, BSCI 701, Senior Seminar, during either semester of the senior year and a capstone experience, such as BSCI 792, Research, BSCI 793, Internship, or BSCI 795, Independent Study, Senior Seminar will meet weekly during either semester of the senior year in a seminar format to share information about students’ research or independent study activities, listen to presentations on timely issues in biology and to support and provide training in poster production, Power Point and other methods of oral presentation and scientific writing as students prepare to present the results of their capstone activities at the Undergraduate Research Conference or other venues.

    In addition, all students will take elective courses to fulfill the 128-credit requirement for a B.A. degree. These elective courses could fulfill the requirements for a major or minor in another program or they could fulfill a self-designed interdisciplinary concentration. They could include some of the supporting science courses listed above. These courses would be selected in consultation with their advisor and the appropriate faculty advisor in another program.

    Note: Pre-medical and pre-dental students should enroll in CHEM 651/653 and 652/654. These courses may substitute for CHEM 545/546 and BMCB 658/659. In addition they should also enroll in MATH 426.

  • Facilities & Equipment

    The study of general biology, microbiology, and chemistry comes alive in UNH Manchester's science labs. Concepts and theories discussed in class are reinforced with hands on experiences in the labs. Observation, sampling, experimentation, organization, and research provide new ways to understand the world. Students learn how to use the equipment and tools of scientific inquiry, including microscopes, spectrophotometers and equipment used for genetic analysis. In the labs students often find a passion for learning and discover new career opportunities.

    • UNH Manchester has four laboratories: microbiology, general biology, chemistry (organic and biochemistry), and a research laboratory.
    • UNH Manchester labs are taught by residential faculty or experienced instructors, not graduate assistants. Science faculty members specialize in teaching in their discipline. With low student-teacher ratios, students and teachers are partners in the learning process.
    • Each lab is limited to 16 students. This provides the optimal learning environment with hands-on experience and access to equipment.
    • Many labs have peer tutors and lab assistants who work with the faculty member to help students perform experiments or conduct research.
    • Students have a unique learning opportunity in small classes with faculty members who are both teachers, scholars, and mentors and inspire student discovery.
    • Many upper level students conduct research during their senior year, sometimes in collaboration with a faculty member. They present their findings at UNH's Undergraduate Research Conference held each spring.
    • Students work with and culture bacteria and other small forms of life in the microbiology lab. In the chemistry labs, students study the properties of matter and energy and the interactions between them.
    • UNH Manchester supports hands-on field research opportunities such as sampling and analysis of water from the area's lakes, ponds, and rivers, and live-trapping studies of small mammals.
  • Faculty

    staff photo

    Stephen Pugh

    Division Chair, Program Coordinator and Associate Professor
    Biology Program
    Science & Technology Division
    University Center
    603-641-4128
    Stephen.Pugh@unh.edu

    staff photo

    Patricia Halpin

    Assistant Professor Biological Science
    Biology Program
    University Center
    603-641-4140
    Patricia.Halpin@unh.edu

    Al Larson

    Adjunct Faculty
    Biology Program
    Science & Technology Division
    University Center
    abliii@unh.edu

    Keith Legro

    Laboratory Coordinator
    Biology Program
    University Center
    603-641-4110
    Keith.Legro@unh.edu

    staff photo

    Kyle MacLea

    Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences
    Biology Program
    Science & Technology Division
    University Center
    603-641-4129
    Kyle.MacLea@unh.edu

  • Articulation Agreements

    Bachelor’s Degree leading to a Master’s of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS)

    Students interested in the UNH Manchester –Massachusetts College Pharmacy & Health Sciences (MCPHS) MPAS program must enter a bachelor degree program and successfully complete the prerequisites for admission to the Master’s in Physician Assistant Studies. Most students accomplish this by enrolling in the Biological Sciences major, although other majors are also possible. Throughout the undergraduate program, students work closely with their advisors to develop an academic plan to guide the student toward his or her academic goals.

    Students must complete all major and university requirements at UNH. The most competitive students (top six) are given preferential consideration for admission to the Master of Physician Assistant Studies program at MCPHS’s Manchester Campus. Upon completion of the UNH degree requirements, students transfer to MCPHS to complete the requirements of a 24-month Master of Physician Assistant Studies degree.

    Students who have already earned a bachelor’s degree at UNH or another college or university can attend UNH Manchester to complete the MCPHS’s Master of Physician Assistant Studies program pre-requisites. Students transferring to UNH Manchester from colleges or universities are not eligible for the collaborative program, but may apply through MCPHS’s regular admission process.

    Pre-Pharmacy Track leading to the Doctor of Pharmacy Degree (PharmD)

    Students interested in the UNH Manchester-Massachusetts College of Pharmacy & health Sciences Doctor of Pharmacy program complete three years of study at the University of New Hampshire at Manchester in a Pre-Pharmacy track. Once these requirements are completed students then transfer to the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences’ Manchester campus to complete the requirements of the accelerated Doctor of Pharmacy degree while completing the remaining UNH degree requirements for the BA Biology degree. Each academic year, UNH Manchester’s most competitive biology students (top six) are given preferential consideration for admission to the accelerated professional phase of MCPHS PharmD program.

    Students interested in the UNH Manchester-MCPHS program must complete all courses at either the UNH Manchester or Durham campuses.

    Alternative models:

    Students can complete the BA in Biology at UNH Manchester and then apply to MCPHS. Students who have already earned a bachelor’s degree can also attend UNH Manchester to complete MCPHS’s PharmD program pre-requisites. Students transferring to UNH Manchester from colleges or universities are not eligible for the accelerated PharmD program, but may apply through the regular transfer admission process.

  • STEM Scholarship

    Scholars in Science and Technology Program

    The UNH Manchester Scholars in Science and TEchnology (SST) program is sponsored by the National Science Foundation Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) program and administered by the University of New Hampshire at Manchester.

    The STEM scholarship is a renewable scholarship. The amount of the award varies based on the student's academic grade level and number of years in the program. Scholarships are typically renewable (pending funding) provided the students meets the requirements of the program.

    • Student interested in pursuing bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences, Computer Information Systems, Engineering Technology, or be admitted in UNH Manchester associates program and demonstrate interest in STEM discipline.
    • Full-time Freshman, Sophomore and Junior students with minimum of 12 credits each semester
    • Maintain a minimum semester UNH GPA average of 2.75 and earn at least a C in every course
    • Must submit FAFSA and demonstrate financial need
    • Click here to apply and for more information

    Award Amounts:

    • Freshmen up to $3,000
    • Sophomore up to $4,000
    • Junior up to $5,000

    Visit our Financial Aid section for more information about the FAFSA, and look for more UNH Manchester Scholarships.

  • Course Sequence

    The following is an example of a course sequence. The sequence may vary depending upon a student's academic history and transfer credits. Students should contact their academic advisor with specific questions.

    First Year

    Fall Semester
    BIOL 413, Principles of Biology I
    CHEM 403, General Chemistry
    MATH 418, Analysis & Application of Functions or MATH 424B/425 Calculus
    ENGL 401, First Year Writing
    UMST 401, First Year Experience Seminar

    Spring Semester
    BIOL 414, Principles of Biology II
    CHEM 404, General Chemistry II
    INQ 444 or INQ Attribute Discovery Course
    MATH 424B, Calculus for Life Science or MATH 425, Calculus

    Second Year

    Fall semester
    BMS 503, General Microbiology
    BIOL 541, General Ecology
    Foreign Language I
    Discovery Course

    Spring Semester
    GEN 604, Principles of Genetics
    PSYC 402, Statistics in Psychology
    Foreign Language II
    Discovery Course

    Third Year

    Fall Semester
    600/700 Biological Concentration
    Discovery Course
    Elective Course
    Elective Course

    Spring Semester
    600/700 Biological Concentration
    Discovery Course
    Elective Course
    Elective Course

    Fourth Year

    Fall Semester
    600/700 Biological Concentration
    Elective Course
    Elective Course
    Elective Course

    Spring Semester
    600/700 Biological Concentration
    Capstone (Internship, Research, or Independent Study)
    BSCI 701, Senior Seminar
    Elective Course

  • Career Facts

    A Biology degree opens doors to a vast number of career opportunities. The skills learned through the study of Biology are readily transferable to an array of occupations including environmental science, physician, biochemist, and horticulturalist.

    The study of Biology develops skills critical to a large number of career fields.

    These qualities include:

    • An understanding of biological principles, concepts, and theories, including the ability to evaluate and synthesize information and ideas.
    • Communicating technical information relating to biological topics in written materials and oral presentations.
    • Gathering, analyzing, organizing, evaluating scientifi c data, to solve problems.
    • Analysis and evaluation of original research literature in the biological sciences.
    • Competency in the use of common biology and chemistry laboratory equipment and instrumentation.

    Make the most of your major:

    • Become a tutor in biology, chemistry, and/or math
    • Develop a minor
    • Complete an internship
    • Apply for research support from the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP)
    • Volunteer at a hospital, lab, environmental education center, animal shelter, etc.
    • Present at theUNH Undergraduate Research Conference
    • Get involved in the research of a faculty member
    • Take a course at a biology field station

    What can I do with this degree?

    • Oceanographer
    • Pharmacist
    • Physical therapist
    • Physician
    • Physician assistant
    • Research coordinator
    • Veterinarian
    • Veterinary technician
    • Wildlife biologist
    • Zoologist
  • Student Stories

  • Course Descriptions

    Click on each course title to read the full description. For all courses offered at our campus, click here

      BIOL 413 - Principles of Biology I

      Lecture and laboratory introduction to biological principles; cell structure, function, replication, energetics and transport mechanisms; physiological processes; Mendelian, molecular genetics, and gene technology. Required for students majoring in the life sciences. Cannot be taken for credit after BIOL 411 or equivalent. Special fee. Lab.
      Credits: 4

      BIOL 414 - Principles of Biology II

      Lecture and laboratory survey of the five kingdoms of life; physiology of cells, tissues, organs, and organ systems; evolution; human impact on the biosphere. Required for students majoring in the life sciences. Cannot be taken for credit after BIOL 412 or equivalent. Special fee. Lab.
      Credits: 4

      BIOL 520 - Our Changing Planet

      Ecosystem interrelatedness and factors critical to maintain sustainability will be addressed. Environmental issues such as water usage, pollution, and treatment; air and soil quality; fossil fuels and alternative energy sources will be presented. No credit if credit earned for ENE 520.
      Credits: 4

      BIOL 541 - General Ecology

      Physical and biological factors affecting distribution, abundance, and adaptations of organisms. Population, community, and ecosystem structure and function. Prereq: BIOL 411-412 or equivalent. Special fee. Lab. Writing intensive
      Credits: 4

      BIOL 604 - Principles of Genetics

      Chemical structure of genetic material, Mendelism, gene recombination, and chromosome mapping. Mutation, gene expression and regulation, recombinant DNA. Quantitative inheritance and population genetics. Prereq: BIOL 411 and 412; CHEM 403 and 404. College math or statistics suggested. Offered each semester.
      Credits: 4

      BMS 503 - General Microbiology

      Principles of microbiology; morphology, physiology, genetics, culture, and classification of bacteria and other microorganisms; and their relationships to agriculture, environment, industry, sanitation, and infectious diseases. Prereq: BIOL 411-412 or equivalent; CHEM 403-404 or equivalent. Special fee. Lab.
      Credits: 4

      BMS 507 - Human Anatomy and Physiology

      Cellular and systematic aspects of the human body. Laboratory exercises utilize preserved specimens, dissectible models, living tissue and computer-aided instruction. No credit if credit earned for ANSC 511-512 or ZOOL 625. Not offered for credit to zoology majors. Lab. Special fee.

      BMS 508 - Human Anatomy and Physiology

      Cellular and systematic aspects of the human body. Laboratory exercises utilize preserved specimens, dissectible models, living tissue and computer-aided instruction. No credit if credit earned for ANSC 511-512 or ZOOL 625. Prereq: BMS 507. Not offered for credit to zoology majors. Lab. Special fee. Group 3B.

      BMS 601 - Bacteriology of Food

      Lectures and laboratories address modern technical concepts of microbiology, physiology, and biochemistry related to food sanitation. Theoretical and practical approach serves as an integrative experience. Food sanitation is a serious public health issue in the meat, dairy, fish, and water industries. Benefits students seeking employment in public health or sanitary microbiology fields. Topics include food as a substrate for microorganisms, causes of food spoilage, food borne disease outbreaks, public health complications, isolation and identification of food spoiling microorganisms, and essentials for food safety and sanitation. Prereq: BMS 503 or equivalent. (Not offered every year.) Special fee.

      BMS 602 - Pathogenic Microbiology

      Morphologic, cultural, biochemical, serologic, epidemiologic, and pathogenic characteristics of microorganisms causing human and animal diseases. Discussion of clinical presentation in host and laboratory diagnosis and treatment measures. Prereq: BMS 503. Lab. Special fee. By permission only.
      Credits: 5

      BSCI 405 - The Diversity of Life

      Survey of ecology, evolution, genetics, and the diversity of life. Emphasis on basic biological principles. For nonbiological sciences majors. Lecture and lab. Cannot be taken for credit after completion of BIOL 411, 413, or equivalent. No credit for students who have completed BIOL 405. Special fee. Lab.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 406 - The Human Organism

      Survey of biological chemistry, molecular and cell biology, and major plant and animal systems. Emphasis on basic biological principles. For nonbiological science majors. Lecture and lab. Cannot be taken for credit after completion of BIOL 412, 414, or equivalent. No credit for students who have completed BIOL 406. Special fee. Lab.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 421 - Diseases of the 21st Century

      Provides a basic understanding of several different diseases that may be prevalent over the next century. Treatment and prevention of the disease are also discussed. Students will acquire a basic understanding of the research methodologies underlying several fields within the biological sciences, such as microbiology, immunology, and molecular biology. Agents of biological warfare is also discussed. ENGL 401.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 422 - Biotechnology and Society

      Course provides a basic understanding of genetic engineering. Techniques discussed will include: cloning, gene transfer, the Polymerase chain reaction (PCR), in vitro fertilization, organ transplants, and paternity testing. Ethical issues involved with each technological advance will be examined and each student will need to state their personal opinion on each issue. Course content is equivalent to BIOL 404. Credit can't be received for both courses.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 431 - It's a Small World: Microbes, the True Masters of our Planet

      This course will make students better informed about the role of microorganisms in their lives. The beneficial uses of microbes in ecosystems, medicine, industry, food, and agriculture will be discussed. Several different diseases, their prevention, identification, and treatment will be addressed in lectures. Microbiological techniques used to identify bacterial strains will be used in the laboratory component of the course. Bacterial strains used in biological warfare will also be presented. Special fee.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 670 - Clinical Pathophysiology

      This course covers the principles and mechanisms of disease at the cellular, tissue, organ, and system levels, including responses to cell injury, death and adaptation, and inflammation. Acute and chronic disease processes as well as trauma are used to both understand the impact of these processes on body function as well as a means to gain a better understanding of integrative body systems. No credit if credit earned for BMS 794 or UMST 599 Clinical Pathophysiology. Prereq: BIOL 413/414 or BMS 507/508.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 680 - Pharmacology

      This course is designed to cover the concepts of basic pharmacology and drug therapy. It includes examination of the body systems and the related drugs therapy within each system. It explores the basic drug groups, key similarities and differences among drugs in each group. Emphasis is placed on the mechanism of action for each group and how these medications act in relation to normative and pathophysiology. The therapeutic use and adverse effects of drugs as well as understanding recreational drug use will be included. No credit if credit received for UMST 599 Pharmacology. Prereq: BIL 413/414 or BMS 507/508.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 701 - Senior Seminar

      To be taken during the last two semesters of the senior year as students complete their Capstone project. Course emphasizes written and oral communication, discussion of current topics in biology, and career guidance. Fall and spring semester. Cr/F.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 702 - Senior Seminar

      To be taken during the last two semesters of the senior year as students complete their Capstone project. Course emphasizes written and oral communication, discussion of current topics in biology, and career guidance. Fall and spring semester. Cr/F.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 735 - Cell Biology

      This course is an upper level biology class that expands on the basic knowledge of cellular structure and function. The focus will be on molecular biology, cell culture and cell signaling. Experiments by preeminent scientists will be explored and analyzed. Prerequisites: BIOL 413, BIOL 414, CHEM 403, CHEM 404, or equivalent courses. No credit for students who have received credit for BMCB 605.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 740 - Aquatic Microbiology

      Lectures and labs focus on Lake Massabesic and its use as the source of supply as th drinking water for approximately 160,000 New Hampshire residents. The course covers a basic history of the Lake, the importance of watershed protection, EPA regulations, and standards and the various techniques and methods available to analyze water for basic quality. No credit for students who have earned credit for UMST 599 Aquatic Microbiology. Prereq: BIOL 541; BMS 503. Permission. Special fee. Writing intensive.
      Credits: 4

      BSCI 792 - Research

      Advanced independent research under the direction of a faculty mentor. Content area to be determined in consultation with faculty member. Prereq: permission. May be repeated for up to 8 credits. Up to 4 credits may be applied to self-designed concentration. Up to 4 credits may be applied to the Capstone requirement. Fall and spring semester. Prereq: Permission of Faculty mentor. Cr/F.
      Credits: 1-4

      BSCI 793 - Internship

      Field-based learning opportunities in the biological sciences through placement in the appropriate outside agency, under the direction of a faculty mentor and representative of outside agency. Content area to be determined in consultation with faculty mentor. Prereq: Permission. May be repeated for up to 8 credits. Up to 4 credits may be applied to self-designed concentration. Up to 4 credits may be applied to the Capstone requirement. Fall and spring semester. Cr/F.
      Credits: 1-4

      BSCI 795 - Independent Study

      Advanced individual study under the direction of a faculty mentor. Content area to be determined in consultation with faculty mentor. Prereq: permission. May be repeated for up to 8 credits. Up to 4 credits may be applied to self-designed concentration. Up to 4 credits may be applied to the Capstone requirement. Fall and spring semester. Cr/F.
      Credits: 1-4