About the Biology Program
Biology is the study of life in all its diverse forms: bacteria, fungi, algae, protozoa, plants and animals. The Department of Biology at Coastal Carolina University gives students opportunities to explore these various life forms at molecular, cellular, organismic and ecological levels. In addition to core curriculum requirements, a biology major includes 38-40 credit hours in upper-division biology courses as well as related courses in chemistry and physics.
The Student Experience
Students have access to professors with a broad range of expertise, from the molecular scale to the ecosystem. Faculty have varied research interests that include infectious diseases, circadian rhythms, cellular and molecular biology, plant population genetics, ichthyology (the study of fish), herpetology (the study of reptiles and amphibians), sea bird conservation, stream and wetland ecology, phylogenomics, and neurology.
Classes take students into both the laboratory and the field. Many laboratories involve outdoor activities and field trips to sites such as Waties Island, wetlands, forests, swamps and the Carolina bays.
Students have the opportunity to work with faculty on independent research projects. Recent topics have included landscape ecology of golf courses, ecology of the Carolina bays, freshwater ecology, using DNA to determine bird parentage, fungus on beaches, and investigating prions.
Internships, employment, and/or volunteer opportunities are available at locations such as Myrtle Beach State Park, Huntington Beach State Park, pharmacies, veterinary and medical practices, and Ripley’s Aquarium.
The Pre-Health Professions Advisory Committee assists students with career goals in the health professions.
Beyond the Classroom
Biology majors go on to careers in a variety of areas including: environmental and medical fields; industrial biologist; zoologist; biomedical engineer; teacher; pharmacologist; clinical researcher; toxicology researcher; biostatistician; botanist; and food and nutrition scientist.
Many career paths are possible with a degree in biology. After completing the undergraduate degree students go on to graduate school, medical school, dental school, or veterinary school. Completion of the first two years at Coastal prepares students for transfer to a School of Pharmacy or to a School of Allied Health Sciences. Students interested in teaching can enter CCU's Master of Arts in Teaching program. Other career opportunities include work with government agencies or with private industry. Careful and continual advising ensures that each student takes the appropriate courses for the chosen career path.
Areas of Study
Bachelor of Science in Biology - Concentrations in
- Cellular, Molecular Biology and Genetics concentration
- Ecology, Evolution and Conservation Biology concentration
- Integrative Biology concentration
Minor in Biology
Related Graduate Programs at CCU
Michael Pierce, Ph.D.