About the Major

Declaration of the major and graduation requirements:

Students may declare the CBN major as soon as they satisfy all requirements, at the earliest after the Spring semester of the Sophomore year, or up to the Fall semester of the Senior year.  To declare the major in CBN, students must:

  1. Have completed one of the two introductory CBN core courses (Fundamentals of Neurobiology OR Fundamentals of Cell and Developmental Biology) with grades of C or better.
  2. It is strongly recommended that students also complete at least 1 semester of Organic Chemistry with a grade of C or better prior to declaring the major.
  3. Declare the major in CBN at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Students will be notified when the application is processed.

In order to graduate students must complete all the courses required for the major with grades of C or better. Courses­ can only be repeated once to replace D/F grades.  

Courses required for the CBN Major:

1. Life Sciences Core Courses

Course Name Course Number Credits Suggested Years
General Biology I 01:119:115 4+ 1st
General Biology II 01:119:116 4 1st
Biological Research Lab 01:119:117 2 1st

General Chemistry (1st semester)

01:160:161 can be substituted with
01:160:163 (Honors Gen Chem) or
01:160:165 (Ext Gen Chem)

01:160:161 4+ 1st

General Chemistry (2nd semester)

01:160:162 can be substituted with
01:160:164 (Honors Gen Chem) or
01:160:166 (Ext Gen Chem)

01:160:162 4 1st
Intro to Experimentation 01:160:171 1 1st

Calculus for Life/Soc Sciences I

01:640:135 can be substituted with 01:640:151 (Calc I Math/Phys)

01:640:135 4+ 1st/2nd

Basic Stat for Research

01:960:401 can be substituted with 01:960:379 (Basic Prob and Stat) or Statistics II (01:960:212 for students who have credits for 01:960:211), or
01:640:136 (Calc II Life/Soc), or 01:640:152 (Calc II Math/Phys)

01:960:401 3 1st/2nd

General Physics (1st semester)

01:750:203 can be substituted with
01:750:193 (Physics for Sciences) or
01:750:201 (Ext Physics

01:750:203 3+ 2nd

General Physics (2nd semester)

01:750:204 can be substituted with
01:750:194 (Physics for Sciences) or
01:750:202 (Ext Physics

01:750:204 3 2nd

General Physics Lab (1st semester)

01:750:205 1+ 2nd

General Physics Lab (2nd semester)

01:750:206 1 2nd

Organic Chemistry (1st semester)

01:160:307 can be substituted with
01:160:315 (Honors Org Chem)




Organic Chemistry (2nd semester)

01:160:308 can be substituted with
01:160:316 (Honors Org Chem)




Organic Chemistry Lab





Genetics 01:447:380 4 3rd

Intro Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

01:694:301 can be substituted with 01:694:407
(Mol Bio Biochem) or 11:115:301 (Intro Biochem)

01:694:301 3 3rd

2. CBN Core Courses

Course Name Course Number Credits Suggested Year

Fundamentals of Neurobiology




Fundamentals of Cell and Dev Bio




Choose any 3* of the following:

Advanced Neurobiology I 01:146:445 3 3rd/4th
Advanced Neurobiology II 01:146:447 3 3rd/4th
Advanced Cell Biology I 01:146:470 3 3rd/4th
Advanced Cell Biology II 01:146:480 3 3rd/4th
Advanced Developmental Biology 01:146:472 3 3rd/4th
Immunology 01:146:474 3 3rd/4th
Human Histology 01:146:322 3 3rd/4th

3. CBN Track options (select at the start of the Senior year)

  1. General Track (default): 2 life science electives at the 300-400 level (at least 6 total credits), including at least 1 lab course, 1 course with an associated lab, or 2 semesters of Research in CBN.
    Course Name Course Number Credits Suggested Year
    2 life science electives See list of Approved Electives 3 or more per elective 4th

    4 options to complete the lab requirement:

    1.) 1-credit lab course
    2.) 3-credit advanced lab course (fulfills 1 elective + lab requirements)
    3.) 4-credit lecture/lab combination course (fulfills 1 
    elective + lab requirements)
    6-junior/senior research credits (fulfills 1 elective + 1 lab requirement)

    See list of Approved Electives
    1 or more 3rd/4th
  2. Honors Track: 1 life science elective at the 300-400 level, Honors Seminar, Honors Research (at least 12 total credits). A written research thesis and oral presentation are required at the end of the Senior Spring semester in order to attain Departmental Honors. Requires a minimum CBN major GPA of 3.4, and submission of a CBN Honors Application Form.
    Course Name Course Number Credits Suggested Year
    1 Elective See list of Approved Electives 3 4th
    Honors Seminars 01:146:405 3 Spring 4th
    Honors Research 01:146:408 3+ 4th
    Honors Research 01:146:409 3 4th

For CBN Major residency rules, please check the Residency Requirements.

CBN Major Worksheet (PDF)