Academic Advisement

Advisement is required of Biology undergraduate and graduate students annually. Undergraduate advisement can be obtained at the Biology Student Advisement Center or from any Biology faculty member in the student’s option. The Biology Student Advisement Center is located in Chaparral Hall 5104 and can be reached at (818) 677-2675 or by email at For graduate students seeking advisement, contact Graduate Coordinator Tim Karels (email:

Contact Jim Dole, Daniel Odom or Terri Richardson for undergraduate advisement and Graduate Coordinator Tim Karels for questions about graduate study.

Contact the following option advisors: Stan Metzenberg (Biotechnology), Daisy Kuhn and Terri Richardson (Medical, Dental, Pharmacy, Optometry, Physician Assistant, Veterinary and Podiatry), Sean Murray (Medical Technology), and Jennifer Matos and Stan Metzenberg (Teacher Preparation).


Many career opportunities are available to the student majoring in biology. The undergraduate program provides an excellent background for further work in medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, optometry, veterinary medicine, biotechnology, clinical laboratory science and graduate programs. It also can serve for direct entry into teaching and a variety of positions in industrial, research and governmental organizations. Graduates of our program have been very successful in gaining admission and to successfully completing advanced degrees at high-quality universities.


This program provides an opportunity for outstanding Biology majors to gain research experience with individual faculty guidance and may be of value for research-minded Pre-Medical students. The designation “Honors” will be added to the academic record of any student who completes the program.

Admission to the program is granted by approval of the Department Honors Committee. Students in the B.A. degree program or in any of the B.S. options are eligible provided they have:

  1. Completed 90 units of college work;
  2. Maintained a 3.50 GPA overall and in the Biology major; and
  3. Obtained the approval of a faculty sponsor who will supervise their research

Interested students should contact the Biology Department office.

Graduation with Honors requires:

  1. Completion of the following courses:
    BIOL 330/L Design and Analysis of Experiments and Lab (2/1)
    BIOL 495 Directed Research (3)
    BIOL 498 Senior Thesis (2)
    All 8 units must be in addition to those completed for the major.
  2. Maintenance of a GPA of 3.50 overall and in all courses in the Biology major completed at CSUN.
  3. Approval of a senior thesis by the Honors Committee, including a presentation of the research.

Clubs and Societies

Pre-Medical and Pre-Professional Information

The B.A. degree is recommended for all pre-professional students; however, any of the B.S. options may be followed by students with special interests. Pre-medical, pre-dental and other students pursuing health-associated professional careers should consult with the Pre-Professional advisors, Terri Richardson or Daisy Kuhn. See Pre-Professional Advisement, Health Professions in this Catalog.

Credential Information

Admission to a CSU credential program or University intern program requires demonstration of subject matter competence in biological science, and there are several ways of completing that requirement. The most common is passage of a set of state-administered California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET), with six testing dates per year ( The exact subtests to be taken depend on the teaching authorizations desired, but for grade 9-12 classroom teaching the requirements usually include general science (subtests 118 and 119) as well as biological sciences (subtest 120). Completion of a B.A. degree in Biology should be adequate preparation for the exams, but candidates may wish to speak to the Biology Credential Advisor to discuss course options. A course-based waiver from one or more of the CSET is possible for certain students who completed a degree in Biology prior to July 1, 2009. Current students who have an undergraduate degree in the field and at least 30 post-baccalaureate units in the field, or a post-baccalaureate degree in the field, should also consult the Biology Credential Advisor about a “Specialized” waiver of the CSET through the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. Students interested in becoming public school science teachers should discuss their plans with the CSUN Credential Office (, as it is sometimes possible to combine preliminary credential coursework with a baccalaureate degree program.


Chair: Larry Allen
Chaparral Hall (CR) 5101
(818) 677-3356