The Bachelor of Science in Biology degree program at Simmons University explores the vast discipline of biology—including animal and plant physiology, developmental biology, molecular biology, biochemistry, microbiology, immunology, ecology, and biotechnology.

Student looking through a microscope

Simmons’ Biology faculty are accomplished research scientists who’ve had a lifelong curiosity about the natural world—just like you. Students in the program work closely with their professors to master the fundamentals and put their knowledge into practice through hands-on learning in our well-equipped labs.

Graduates of the Biology degree program go on to prestigious graduate programs in biology, allied health, medicine, dentistry, veterinary science, and genetic engineering, and to successful careers in government, university, hospital, and commercial laboratories.

Why study Biology?

Biology is the science and study of life. All living things fall under the umbrella of biology: humans, animals, plants—it is an enormous and all-encompassing discipline that consists of many fields and subfields. Biology is critical to medicine and healthcare, forensics, technology, and wildlife and environmental conservation.

A bachelor’s degree in Biology from Simmons cultivates an extensive understanding of the basic principles of biology, including the structure, biochemistry, function, and metabolism of cells, as well as genetics and the theory of evolution.

What will you learn?

Simmons’ Bachelor of Science in Biology consists of five (5) required courses amounting to 20 credit hours, four (4) prerequisite courses, plus three (3) additional courses in biology. In addition to the classroom curriculum, Biology students at Simmons must also complete their senior Capstone requirement via research, an internship, or a thesis. Find out more about pursuing an internship.

View the Program Requirements drop-down menu below for a list of required courses, and browse the course catalog for full course descriptions.

Biology can also be taken as a minor.

What can you do with a Bachelor’s degree in Biology?

What better place to earn your BS in Biology than Boston? Simmons sits in the heart of the city, a stone’s throw from Longwood Medical Area's internationally-known teaching hospitals and biomedical research centers.

Careers for Biology bachelor’s degree holders include:

  • Biochemist
  • Genetic Counselor
  • Microbiologist
  • Agricultural & Food Scientist
  • Pharmaceutical Sales Representative

Many graduates of Simmons’ BS in Biology program also go on to earn their graduate degrees in their chosen specialties.

Learn more about our Bachelor of Science in Biology!

Questions about the Bachelor of Science in Biology degree program? You can request more information or contact us at the Admissions Office by calling 617-521-2051. Want to check out Simmons University in the flesh? Schedule a campus visit to get to know our community and explore the vibrant and diverse neighborhoods of Boston.

Students planning a program in biology satisfy the core requirements by taking the following courses:

Year 1:

BIOL113 General Biology 4
BIOL115 Advanced General Biology 4
BIOL218 General Biology II-Organismal Diversity in the Environment 4

Year 2:

BIOL222 Animal Physiology 4
BIOL225 Cell Biology 4

Year 3:

BIOL336 Genetics 4

To complete the minimum requirements, students must take three additional courses in biology; at least two courses of which must be 300-level and one must be 200-level, OR three 300-level courses.

In the senior year students must satisfy their Capstone requirement by taking two semesters of

BIOL350 Independent Laboratory Research 4
BIOL355 Thesis 4
BIOL370 Internship 0

Students are required to take

CHEM111 Principles of General Chemistry 4
CHEM113 General & Quantitative Chemistry I 4
CHEM216 General & Quantitative Chemistry II 4
CHEM224 Organic Chemistry I 4
CHEM225 Organic Chemistry II 4
MATH120 Calculus I 4
STAT118 Introductory Statistics 4
MATH227 Statistical Design and Analysis 4
MATH229 Regression Models 4

  • Students interested in medical or dental school or in pursuing graduate study in certain areas of biology should plan to include MATH 121 and a year of physics.  
  • Students interested in careers in dentistry, medicine, optometry, podiatry, veterinary medicine, and the allied health professions should consult the health professions advisor.


A minor in biology requires BIOL 113 General Biology or BIOL 115 Advanced General Biology and four additional courses in biology, all of which must be designated BIOL and numbered 200 or above. 

Students should contact the department chairperson to discuss course selection.

No more than two courses can be counted from transfer credits; these must be approved by the department chairperson.

You'll work with a faculty advisor to tailor your program to your interests and career goals. The Department of Biology offers many closely-related programs — such as Biochemistry, Health and Exercise Science, Neuroscience and Behavior, Public Health and Environmental Science — and Simmons students have many opportunities to further customize with dual majors and complementary minors.

Certification for teaching biology at the middle school and secondary school levels is possible by enrollment in the Department of Education. An accelerated five-year BS Biology or Exercise Science/MS Nutrition program is jointly offered by the biology department and the nutrition department in the School of Nursing and Health Sciences.

Our students put theory into practice through on-site research, off-site research, and internships.

  • On-site research: Faculty members mentor students in our own laboratories. You'll work with faculty members whose research piques your interest.
  • Off-site research: Students also explore clinical, applied, or basic research at one of the many laboratories and institutions available in the Simmons neighborhood.
  • Internships: Supervised learning experiences provide opportunities for career exploration within a context of critical thinking.

In all paths, students work closely with a faculty member who supervises the independent learning requirement and the final paper.

Simmons' Independent Learning Requirement forms the basis for the Biology senior project, the capstone experience where majors explore a topic of interest in their field of study. In addition to writing a final paper, all students formally present their work at the Eastern New England Biological Conference and/or at the Simmons Biology Symposium.

Spotlight on Biology Students and Alums

Misty Neader ’25MWS and Devin Ryan ’21

A Mother Follows Her Child’s Footsteps to a Simmons Education

During high school, Devin Ryan ’21 toured Simmons, where they later majored in Biology. Meanwhile, someone close to Ryan was also inspired by that campus tour: their mother, Misty Neader ’25MSW.

Leila Aydibi ’24

Inspired to Expand a Summer Research Project into an Independent Study

Biology major Leila Aydibi ’24 discusses getting involved on campus, participating in a research project, being a first-generation student, and some of her favorite Simmons courses.

Headshots of the 2024 Senior Scholar Award winners

Congratulations to the 2024 Senior Scholars

The annual Senior Scholar Award is sponsored by the Provost's Office and the Office of Undergraduate Research and Fellowships. The award recognizes six graduating seniors for their outstanding scholarship and contribution to a field of study.

A model of a Perfluorooctanoic acid molecule.

Associate Professor of Biology Eric Luth Co-Authors Scientific Article with Former Students

Neurobiologist Eric Luth recently co-authored a peer-reviewed article in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Part A (October 2021) with several of his students: Celine Breton ’21, Kaitlyn Kessel ’23, Ariel Robinson ’19, and Kainat Altaf ’22. The piece traces developmental abnormalities among worm populations after exposure to environmental contaminants.

A photo composite of the nine students in the Passionate Leaders Project 2023 cohort

Simmons Announces Passionate Leaders Project Scholars for Fall 2023

The Passionate Leaders Project supports Simmons undergraduates by enriching their academic & professional interests beyond the classroom. Students may request up to $4,000 to support their research, internships, and creative endeavors. This semester’s students produced research related to human rights, documentary film, healthcare access, therapeutic care databases, the neurodevelopment of fruit flies, Muslims’ experiences with healthcare in Boston, and software that supports Simmons’ food pantry.

Headshot of Sandi Fenwick

Celebrating Visionary Leader Sandi Fenwick ’72

Sandi Fenwick ’72, CEO of Boston Children’s Hospital, is the recipient of the inaugural Helen G. Drinan Visionary Leader award. Prior to the ceremony, we asked Fenwick her thoughts on the award, her career, and what it means to be a visionary leader.

Main College Building cupola with fall leaves

Passionate Leaders Project: Fall 2020 Cohort

The Passionate Leaders Project supports undergraduate students seeking to enrich their academic and professional interests by funding learning opportunities beyond the boundaries of the traditional classroom.