Biology is one of the most popular majors at UNM, with good reason. As the study of living organisms, Biology students can explore any aspect of life on earth that interests them. Biology majors learn about the basic organization, processes and dynamics of the living world. The many subdisciplines of biology can prepare students for a wide range of careers and professional schools, including medicine, conserving our public lands, teaching, further research in academia, governmental and non-governmental organizations, pharmaceutics, public policy, and much, much, more.
The Biology department is a leader at UNM in funded research and scholarly productivity, and students learn about research by doing it, either by participating in faculty-led research or pursuing independent research in a research lab through our Honors Program. Additionally, undergraduate training programs in the department like MARC at UNM, the PREP at UNM program, and the Sevilleta REU sites program provide additional opportunities for students to engage with research. The Biology department is home to major research programs like the Museum of Southwestern Biology, the Sevilleta Long-Term Ecological Research Program (LTER), the Center for Evolutionary and Theoretical Immunology (CETI), and New Mexico Natural Heritage. Working in a research lab gives you a chance to see how biological knowledge is created, and to connect with a 'family' of people who share common interests and enthusiasm for an area of biology. Reach out to a faculty member whose research interests you - they love to talk about biology!
You can do a general B.A. or B.S. degree, or you can choose from the following formalized concentrations:
In addition to the concentrations above, the department offers classes that you can use to create your own specialized program of study in Botany, Computation, Microbiology, Molecular/Cellular Biology, Physiology, Systematics, and Zoology.
Biotechnology: Biotechnology is the practical application of biological processes into new technology, and is used in a variety of industries: pharmaceutical, agricultural, medical, food science, environmental restoration, energy, and more. The Biotechnology concentration provides students with specific laboratory skills required for employment in biological and health professions, and make graduates more competitive and successful candidates for admission into graduate programs around the country. We designed the curriculum to respond to industry needs and meet competencies common to biotechnology programs around the nation.
Conservation Biology: This concentration provides students with a strong background in biology as well as the complementary interdisciplinary skills critical to understanding and addressing contemporary conservation questions, including the importance of biological diversity from ecological, aesthetic, economic and political viewpoints; extinction as a past, present and future process; and the roles of genetics, levels of biological organization, nature reserves, and laws in the protection and recovery of endangered organisms. Possible career pathways include conservation scientist, biological technician, wildlife biologist and other careers managing natural resources and endangered species.
Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology: Climate change and other pressing environmental problems have led to the increased importance of a solid understanding of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology (EEOB). Students develop expertise in the biology of a group of organisms or ecological relationships, familiarity with methodologies used in study, expertise in the systematics of classification, and significant hands-on experience in the field or research laboratory. The concentration is designed to provide a comprehensive background for students planning to pursue graduate school or seek a career in a governmental agency.
There is no minor required for the Biology B.S. degree.
Programs of Study
- B.A. Biology
- B.S. Biology
- Optional Concentrations:
- Conservation Biology (B.A. or B.S.)
- Biotechnology (B.S.)
- Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology (B.S.)
- Undergraduate Academic Advisor(s):
Advisor office locations vary. Please click on your advisor's name below to learn more.
- Advising Email:
- Department Email:
- Department Location:
- Castetter Hall (Bldg 21), Suite 167