• student sitting at microscope

As a biology major at Fresno Pacific University, you’ll explore big questions and learn to navigate faith and science in your studies. Courses will take you to diverse habitats, from studying the principles of ecology at Kings Canyon National Park to analyzing fish behavior along California’s Central Coast. You'll study a range of topics, including molecular biology, global ecosystems, human biology and the diversity of life, preparing for a range of careers in science and beyond. Study under professors who have specialized in a wide range of topics, from entomology to mechanical engineering, and explore opportunities to delve into research projects. With B.A., you’ll have greater flexibility in your coursework as you choose an emphasis of interest to you.


  • Craft a major to suit your particular interests with Environmental, Human Health, Secondary Teaching or an Individualized emphasis.
  • Off-campus summer and study abroad programs encouraged
  • Join the on-campus, environmental 'Shalom Club' to work on the campus garden and take trips around California with classmates

Career opportunities

Common careers for biologists include teacher, researcher, lab coordinator and environmental scientist. Our graduates are also well-prepared for medical and graduate studies, including teacher credential programs, master’s and doctoral research.

Course listing

In order to obtain a bachelor’s degree from Fresno Pacific University, students must complete at least 120 units. Along with completing all required courses in their selected area of study, general education requirements must be met by all graduates. See the general education summary in the undergraduate academic catalog for more information.

Select programs may not provide enough units for a student to graduate and therefore an emphasis and/or elective courses must be completed alongside the major. Please see below for emphases related to this area of study.

General Education Prerequisites

BIOL 111General Biology: Cells and Physiology4
CHEM 103General Chemistry I4
MATH 140Pre-Calculus4

Required Courses (30 Units)

BIOL 121General Biology: Diversity and Ecology4
BIOL 312Ecology4
BIOL 332Human Physiology4
BIOL 370Bioethics3
BIOL 450Genetics4
BIOL 470History and Philosophy of Science3
BIOL 485BIOSenior Seminar2
CHEM 104General Chemistry II4
MATH 311Statistics for the Natural Sciences3

Select one of the following emphases (18 Units)

General Emphasis Required Courses

The general biology emphasis provides the maximum flexibility to craft a major to suit your particular interests. You are encouraged to consider off-campus summer programs and semester abroad programs for additional course enrichment.

  • One course in chemistry, mathematics or physical science (3- 4 units)
  • Upper division biology (5 units minimum)
  • Additional courses in biology, chemistry, mathematics or physical sciences to complete 48 units in the major.

Secondary Teaching Emphasis Required Courses

The secondary teaching emphasis will guide you to becoming a teacher in the field of biology.

PHYS 120General Physics I4
PHYS 150Earth Science3
  • Additional courses in biology, physical sciences or LA 385 - Critical Approaches to Teaching to complete 48 units in the major.

Teacher Education Program Information

Students who are interested in applying for admission to the teacher education program should refer to the graduate school description of admissions requirements for the program and obtain academic advising from the program at least two semesters prior to completion of their degrees. LA-385: Critical Approaches to Teaching is recommended to students, as it provides school-based experiences with youth.

Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT) Information

1. Biology (AS-T) to Biology, B.A.

BA courses fulfilled through ADT:

  • All lower-division General Education requirements fulfilled
  • BA co-requisites and major courses fulfilled through ADT:
    • BIOL 111     General Biology: Cells and Physiology (4)
    • BIOL 121     General Biology: Diversity and Ecology (4)
    • CHEM 103    General Chemistry I (4)
    • CHEM 104    General Chemistry II (4)
    • MATH 210    Calculus I (4) [*replaces MATH-140]
  • This program is offered as daytime traditional

ADT Guarantee is the completion of BA/BS degree in 68 units.

Program director

Alan Thompson, Ph.D.
Alan Thompson, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Biology, Program Director, Pharmaceutical Science, Pre-Health Sciences & Biology B.A.


Andrew Sensenig
Andrew T. Sensenig, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Progam Director, Biology B.S.

Michael Kunz
Michael Kunz, Ph.D.

Program Director, Environmental Science & Environmental Studies

Krista Edmiston, Ph.D.
Krista Edmiston, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Biology

Karen Cianci, Ph.D.
Karen Cianci, Ph.D.

Dean of the School of Natural Sciences