About this Degree

The Biology major at UGA enables students to sample from the very broad and diverse range of learning opportunities in the biological sciences.  Unlike some of the more specialized degree programs (e.g. Cellular Biology, Microbiology, Genetics, Biochemistry, Plant Biology) the biology major enables the student to sample broadly creating a unique program of study that best matches the student’s interests and abilities.  Students are encouraged to participate in sponsored research experiences as well as to take advantage of many of the study abroad opportunities that UGA offers.

What you will learn

The Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree with a major in biology is a liberal arts degree with a concentration in the biological sciences. It is not a pre-professional degree, but it does prepare students for professional programs as well as for advanced degrees in the biological sciences. A major in biology is valuable because of the important role that biology plays in our everyday lives. An understanding of basic biological principles is crucial in interpreting the implications of environmental degradation and loss of biodiversity, the impact of genetic engineering and biotechnology in crop improvement, the treatment of disease, forensic medicine, and legal and ethical issues associated with the above.

Scholarship and Award Information

Christopher Henry Vaught Scholarship in Science Policy

This scholarship is available to support highly motivated undergraduate students in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, or other life sciences, to engage in Science Policy research as a part of the Fall and Spring UGA Washington Semester Program. Applicants are evaluated based on review of 500-word, typed personal statement indicating why you wish to participate in the program in the area of science policy, resumé, academic transcripts, and an interview. Typically, one award is made annually. This program is made possible on account of the generosity of Drs. Jim Vaught and Irene Glowinski, who reside in the Washington D.C. area.

More Undergraduate Scholarships & Awards

Other Academic Information

Other Degrees/Programs Offered:

In addition to the B.S. degree in Biology students can major with a concentration in Neuroscience or an emphasis in Marine Biology

Employment

Possible Job Titles:

Students armed with a bachelor's degree in Biology from UGA have a wide variety of career options at their disposal.  Indeed, many of our students go on to pursue advanced degrees in medicine and dentistry, become pharmacists, veterinerians and teachers, or even attend graduate school and conduct research in their own laboratories.
 
For more information, please see the UGA Career Center's Careers in Biology.

The National Association of Colleges and Employers 2012 Salary Survey reported a median starting salary of $38,300 for graduates with a bachelor's degree in the biological/life sciences, up from $37,900 in 2011. Data from the 2012 Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook show that 2010 median starting salaries for positions in the life sciences ranges from $33,000 (Food Science Technician or Forest Conservation Technician with an Associate's degree) to $55,000 (Forensic Scientist or Zoologist/Wildlife Biologist with a Bachelor's degree) to upwards of $70,000 (Biochemists and Biophysicists with Doctoral degrees). Keep in mind that salaries may vary greatly depending on geographic location, job type, and the experience and education required for entry-level positions.

Higher salaries are often found in private research companies and government agencies, where you may have more job security, advancement opportunities, and independence in your work. While jobs in nonprofit groups or academic institutions may have lower salaries, many biologists find great personal reward in working for an organization that is affecting change and has an emphasis on teamwork and collaboration

Employers:
Raybiotech North Atlanta OBGYN
SMC Corporation Wells Fargo
Alpha Scientific Northeast Sales Distributing
Crier Life The University of Georgia
NOAA Corps Medical Aid Supply House
Choice Care Perimeter Orthopedics
Nuzhat, PC Athens Regional Medical Center
Centers for Disease Control and Prium
Prevention University of North Georgia
Emory University Babcock Dermatology
Dial America  

Other Relevant Information

General Research Information:

Undergraduates majoring in biology have the opportunity to enhance their learning through direct participation in research and scholarship. At UGA, these opportunities enable undergraduates to participate in ground-breaking research, often as part of a team of graduate students and faculty. In fact, many students can earn academic credit while working under an experienced faculty mentor by taking BIOL 4960 or working directly with the Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities (CURO).

The Biological Sciences Undergraduate Research Fellowship (BSURF) has been established to support undergraduate research opportunities in the Division of Biological Sciences within the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences. The Fellowship provides financial assistance to a student who has not had an opportunity to participate in a mentored research experience (paid, volunteer, or for credit) since matriculating to The University of Georgia.