"Traveling in international scholar exchange, diving into a field research team and being mentored in a community of inspiring peers and exceptional leaders gave me great confidence that my contributions could, should and would be impactful.”
Megan Cook (Biology '09), Manager of Education Partnerships & Programs at Ocean Exploration Trust.
The BASICS: Biology
Department: Integrative Biology
Degrees offered: Bachelor of Science, Honors Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, Ph.D.
Online option: No (See Zoology for a related major that is available online)
Biology minor: Learn more here
Biology graduate program: Learn more here
What is biology?
Biology is the foundational study of life from basic cellular levels to the broader context of ecosystems. As a biology major at Oregon State, your extensive curriculum covers courses in genetics, physiology, marine biology, ecology, conservation and so much more. And we get you out there: OSU’s biology major offers field, clinical and laboratory research experiences that will complement your studies in the classroom.
Why get a biology degree?
As a biology major, you’ll be trained for life science careers ranging from human/animal health to conservation, science education and public policy. Thinking about grad school? You’ll be well prepared for graduate programs in the biological sciences and professional schools including medicine, veterinary medicine, dentistry, pharmacy and others.
With eight options and a wealth of electives, OSU’s biology major offers you a curriculum that is interdisciplinary, comprehensive and career-focused.
The PAYOFF: Careers in biology
What jobs can you get with a biology degree?
With a biology degree from OSU, you’ll be able to embark on a huge number of career paths.
Here are just several examples of career pathways our biology alumni have followed:
Learn more about your biology curriculum
- What kind of classes will you take? Check out our list of biology courses:
Biology courses >
- How does adding an option affect your degree path? Learn more about your biology options — requirements, class types, learning outcomes and more:
More about transcript-visible options >
- What could your class schedule look like over four years? Have a look at this sample plan to help guide your way towards graduation:
Biology major: sample plan >
The EXPERIENCE: Hands-on opportunities
What makes a biology degree from Oregon State better? One big reason: our hands-on learning experiences! Science is often a competitive career field - these experiences give you the real-world skills to support your future goals.
Fun fact: The Department of Integrative Biology is a campus leader in study abroad — our students make up a large portion of total OSU majors studying abroad. Participate in a wide variety of abroad experiences around the world in STEM or other areas of interest.
This is your chance to see up close what it means to be a scientist. Don’t just study science in the classroom — get in a lab and contribute to it, working alongside world-class faculty!
Learn why undergraduate research is better here >
Internships serve as your perfect transitional experience into a career field. Gain real-world career experience while exploring the career possibilities your degree opens up.
Learn about amazing internship opportunities >
Our students’ work spans the globe! Immerse yourself in another culture to gain a global perspective in your studies.
Take your science studies around the world >
Here’s your chance to discover like-minded communities of peers who share your interests! Come together and engage in meaningful ways.
Connect with a club and more members of Team Science >
The SUPPORT: Connect with your advisor
Your science advisor is your all-in-one resource for college success! Our advisors will help you navigate your whole journey at OSU. If you have questions now, you can reach out to one of our amazing peer advisors and they can help you with anything you’d like to know about our programs or being a student at OSU.
And of course, you can always reach out to our Student Peer Advisors at email@example.com with questions, as well! Our Peer Advisor team is friendly, helpful and can share their first-hand knowledge of the Oregon State experience.