Western University BiologyWestern Science

Course Information

Student working with a microscope



The Department of Biology has an undergraduate curriculum that is comprised of 78 courses that range from Biology 1001A and 1002B each with over 1400 students to a diversity of fourth-year courses where the enrolments are often less than 20 students.

Biology is a diverse and ever-changing subject and the Department of Biology offers courses in all the major subdisciplines: genetics, evolution, biochemistry, cell biology, physiology and ecology.  We offer courses as different as plant diseases and marine environments, as well as courses in human molecular genetics and animal migration.   

A central feature of the curriculum is what is called the BioCore.  This is a group of foundational courses that almost all students are required to take.  The BioCore consists of two first year (1000-level) courses: 

and six 2000-level courses:

  • 2244A/B Analysis & Interpretation of Biological Data
  • 2290F/G Scientific Method in Biology
  • 2382B Cell Biology
  • 2483A Ecology
  • 2581B Genetics
  • 2601A/B Organismal Physiology

The goal of the BioCore is to expose you to the breadth of biology early on so that you can find an area that really interests you and perhaps concentrate more in that area in years three and four of the program. Thus to be most effective the BioCore should be completed by the end of year two.