Biology – Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

Program Type: Major
Program Level: Undergraduate
Department: Majors

A degree in biology creates boundless opportunities. A degree in biology from Upstate takes those possibilities to even greater heights, thanks to a proven curriculum, exceptional industry partners and internships, and our setting in one of South Carolina’s most opportunity-rich regions.   

A focus on hands-on lab coursework and meaningful research means heightened preparation for industry and graduate school.

As a biology major you’ll engage in abundant hands-on lab experiences—working on coursework and research—using the cutting-edge technology and resources of our Smith Science Building, as well as environmental and ecological areas in the region. You’ll find research opportunities at places such as Epcot, Savannah River Ecology Lab, and Gibbs Cancer Center, among others. And you’ll position yourself for any number of future professional paths, from research, teaching and conservation work to medical school and careers in veterinary medicine, pharmacy, dentistry and other health-related fields.



  • The curriculum at USC Upstate includes introductory and upper-level courses such as:

    • Comparative anatomy and physiology
    • Invertebrate zoology
    • Botany
    • Microbiology
    • Molecular biology
    • Genetics
    • Immunology
    • Plant taxonomy
    • Animal behavior
    • Ecology
    • Developmental biology
    • Senior seminar

    Support courses are taken in chemistry, physics, mathematics, foreign language, arts and humanities, social and behavioral sciences and computer science. A minor in chemistry is easily earned by completing just two to three additional courses. Ample opportunities exist for undergraduate research with faculty.

  • Students who major in biology look forward to a range of careers that cover the spectrum of biological disciplines. These include positions in:

    • Research
    • Quality control
    • Wildlife management
    • Soil conservation
    • Teaching
    • Consulting

    With further training, biology students find rewarding careers in health-related fields such as:

    • Medicine
    • Physical therapy
    • Occupational therapy
    • Physician assisting
    • Optometry
    • Dentistry
    • Pharmacy
    • Veterinary medicine

    Other students may elect to continue their education in graduate programs in preparation for research, public service, or education careers.

    • Gibbs Cancer Center
    • Greenville Health Systems
    • Savannah River Ecology Lab
    • Medical University of South Carolina
    • Epcot
  • Dr. Salman Fidahussein

    The first stop in the United States for Dr. Salman Fidahussein ’04, who is a pulmonology and critical-care physician with the Well Star Medical Group in LaGrange, Georgia, was when he traveled almost 8,000 miles from his native Tanzania to attend the University of South Carolina Upstate.

    During his undergraduate years, Fidahussein would master English as he earned his Bachelor of Science in biology. Fidahussein went on to medical school at the Ross University School of Medicine in the West Indies, and then received a postdoctoral certificate in clinical and translational science from the Mayo Graduate School in Minnesota.