Explore a Biology Degree at UNW | University of Northwestern, St. Paul
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Department of Biology & Biochemistry


Students working on biology homework
Department of Biology & Biochemistry


  • Bachelor of Science
  • Undergraduate

125 credits

required for program

Minor Available

PSEO/Early college online classes

125 credits

125 credits

required for program

Minor Available

PSEO/Early college online classes

Work with professors on cutting-edge research while developing a deeper appreciation for God’s design in nature. The biology program investigates the mechanisms and connections of living things from molecules to ecosystems. This degree lays the foundation for careers in medicine, laboratory research, ecology, conservation and other scientific fields.

Why study biology at Northwestern?

Our program is designed to be challenging but also very supportive. The curriculum prepares you for advanced study in medical or applied fields, while students and professors participate in tutoring and study groups to provide accountability and help.

The biology program is divided into four tracks: Pre-Medical/Pre-Professional Track, Cellular and Molecular Biology Track, Environmental Biology Track, and a General Biology Track. Choose the one that best fits your desired career.

You have the opportunity to participate in unique research opportunities alongside professors, like researching marine biology in Japan with the University of Tokyo, identifying the function of microbial DNA or monitoring how ecosystems respond to invasive species.

With campus so close to downtown Minneapolis and St. Paul, students can take advantage of opportunities in Minnesota’s thriving biology industries.

Faculty will encourage you to explore God’s creation in the classroom to gain a deeper appreciation of His power. You will get to know your professors on a personal level due to small class sizes, leading to firsthand mentoring and industry network connections.

If you are passionate about serving, interested in research, curious about why things work the way they do, willing to follow a rigorous program, and are interested in a career in research, medicine, or other scientific fields, this might be the right degree for you.

What will I learn?

You will learn to think critically and perform research while studying cellular and molecular biology, genetics, and ecology.

My lifelong passion to integrate faith and the study of biology influences my teaching and my research at University of Northwestern.
Lisanne Winslow
Professor of Biology

Careers in biology

There are a variety of career and academic pathways that begin with a degree in biology.

What types of work are related to this degree?

  • Product development
  • Industrial quality control
  • Technical sales
  • Analysis and testing
  • Environmental protection and research
  • Legal, medical and scientific research
  • Food science and research
  • Forensic technician
  • Aquatic biologist
  • Laboratory or blood bank testing/technology
  • Botany technician
  • Clinical research assistant
  • Forestry or park ranger
  • Histology or microbiology technician
  • Medical school
  • Dental school
  • Chiropractic school
  • Physical Therapy school
  • Veterinary school
  • Public Health

Who employs people with this degree?

  • Colleges and universities
  • Clinics and hospitals
  • Pharmaceutical, biotech, and chemical companies
  • Public health agencies
  • Federal/state/local government laboratories & agencies
  • State/national parks
  • Medical research laboratories
  • Private research foundations
  • Agriculture and food production industries
  • Zoos
View Career Guide

of biology graduates who followed our review program were accepted into medical school


Twin Cities businesses and biomedical research companies such as the 3M Corporation and Minnesota Zoo


tracks available in this degree

Preparing for a Career

College graduation rates continue to increase each year making competition for jobs even greater. Set yourself apart from the crowd with the following strategies for getting started, networking, and gaining experience.

Strategies for success:

  • A Bachelor’s degree will qualify one for work as a laboratory assistant, technician, technologist, or research assistant in education, industry, government, museums, parks, and gardens.
  • An undergraduate degree can also be used for nontechnical work in writing, illustration, sales, photography, and legislation.
  • The biological sciences are good preparation for a career in healthcare such as medicine, dentistry and veterinary science, but professional degrees and licenses are also necessary.
  • Read scientific journals related to your area of interest.
  • Learn federal, state, and local government job application process. The federal government is the largest employer of biologists.
  • Gain experience with grant writing and fundraising techniques. Often, research must be funded in this manner.
  • Develop multiple areas of specialization through coursework, minors, or double-majors in molecular biology, mathematics, statistics, or computer science.
  • Become familiar with the specific entrance exam for graduate or professional schools in your area of interest.

Discover the Department of Biology & Biochemistry

Professors at Northwestern are focused on their students first. Our faculty include experts in their respective fields who want to help you grow in your faith while you earn your degree.

Meet the staff Explore the department

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