Biology and Biological Sciences

academics biology
Quincy University's Biology and Biological Sciences program prepares you for a variety of future careers by focusing on hands-on learning and an individualized approach to education. Each degree includes many lab exercises, field courses, and opportunities to learn professional skills in real-world settings.

Quincy's small class sizes and mentoring by faculty members who hold doctoral degrees will enable you to tackle our challenging curriculum and exceed your goals. Whether you're puzzling over a lab experiment, pondering graduate school choices, or seeking a letter of recommendation that shows your individual strengths, Quincy University gives you the advantage you need.

Our program offers two four-year undergraduate degrees: the Bachelor of Science degree in Biological Sciences and the Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology. A minor in biology is also available. Within the Biology and Biological Sciences program students can follow a number of educational tracks or concentrations:

  • Pre-Professional Tracks: Many students choose this track, designed to lead to admission to graduate school in medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, veterinary medicine, or another health profession
  • Pre-Physical Therapy Track: Integrates coursework in physical education and prepares students for physical therapy school.
  • Environmental Track: Focuses on the ecological principles and environmental issues involved in our natural world.
  • Secondary Education Certification: Offers a secondary teacher certification program in conjunction with the School of Education for students seeking certification as junior high and high school teachers.
  • Clinical Laboratory Science [1.6.4] Degree: Focused on medical technology in collaboration with academically affiliated hospitals.

For more information about the Biology and Biological Sciences program, feel free to contact:

Dr. Lee Enger
Chair, Division of Science & Technology/Associate Professor of Biochemistry
217-228-5432 ext. 3261
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

BIO 103     Problems in the Environment
Credit Hours: 3
A study of ecological principles and current environmental problems including air, water, and noise pollution, population, energy, solid waste disposal, radiation hazards, inorganic contaminants, pesticides, soil conservation. Two lecture periods, two hours laboratory.

BIO 105     Human Biology
Credit Hours: 3
A nonmajor course to introduce the student to an understanding of the human body. Two lecture periods and two hours of laboratory.

BIO 111    Life Sciences
Credit Hours: 4
This course is designed to fulfill the science component of the general education requirements for non-science majors. The course is a combination of various introductory life-science courses and the integration of their contents, including: general biology, ecology, evolution, botany, zoology, and human biology. Three lecture periods, two hours laboratory.

BIO 150     Principles of Biology I
Credit Hours: 4
A study of the fundamental principles of biology for the biology major. Cell structure and function, genetics and evolution, and animal physiology and diversity are discussed. Three lecture periods, three hours laboratory. Strongly recommended: high school biology and chemistry.

BIO 151     Principles of Biology II
Credit Hours: 4
An introduction to the kingdoms of life (Monerans, Protists, Fungi, and Plants), evolution, natural selection, photosynthesis, plant structure and plant physiology. Three lecture periods, three hours laboratory.

BIO 221     Invertebrate Zoology
Credit Hours: 3
Morphology, physiology, life cycles and phylogeny of animal groups from poriferans through echinoderms. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO 111 or BIO 150.

BIO 232    Microbiology
Credit Hours: 3
This course acquaints the students with microorganisms and their activities. Topics include cell structure and function, metabolism, growth, the role of microorganisms in disease immunity, and other selected areas. The laboratory will stress aseptic technique, culturing methods, control of microbial growth and unknown identification. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO 150 and 151.

BIO 270-9  Special Topics
Credit Hours: 1-3
Special topics in biology in depth, depending on demand and staff.

BIO 282-283   Anatomy and Physiology I & II
Credit Hours: 4
Two-semester course sequence with a two-hour lab and three lecture periods. First semester, the lab covers anatomy; lectures include cells, tissues, skin, muscle, nerves, and circulatory system. Second semester, the lab covers physiology; lectures include respiratory, digestive, urinary, endocrine, acid-base balance, and reproductive systems.

BIO 305     Genetics
Credit Hours: 3
An in-depth study of the principles of both classical and molecular genetics. Prerequisites: BIO 150 and 151.

BIO 321     Entomology
Credit Hours: 3
An introduction to the study of insects, with emphasis on evolution, classification, physiology and behavior. Prerequisite: BIO 150.

BIO 327     Ecology
Credit Hours: 3
Basic ecological principles with emphasis on the interrelationships between organisms and their environment, populations, communities, and ecosystems. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory and field work. Prerequisite: BIO 150 or BIO 151.

BIO 328    Advanced Topics in Anatomy and Physiology
Credit Hours: 3
This course examines advanced topics in Anatomy and Physiology. It focuses on reading and analysis of literature and case studies. Three lecture periods. Prerequisites: BIO 282 and 283.

BIO 330     Developmental Biology
Credit Hours: 3
A study of the maturation of gametes, fertilization, the differentiation of germ layers, and the formation of fetal organ systems in selected vertebrate and some invertebrate types. Laboratory consists of an intensive, descriptive study of whole mounts and serial sections of starfish, amphioxus, frog, chick and pig. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory. Strongly recommended: BIO 282-283. Prerequisite: Junior standing.

BIO 340    Organic Evolution
Credit Hours: 3
Principles of the neodarwinian process, the central theory of biology.

BIO 350     Molecular Biology
Credit Hours: 3
An in-depth study of the fundamental concepts of structure and function of plants, animals, and microbial cells. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO 305 and Junior standing.

BIO 354     Pathophysiology
Credit Hours: 3
A study of the disease process along with the normal physiology of the body systems and the clinical relationships which are appropriate. Three lecture periods. Prerequisites: BIO 282-283.

BIO 356     Ecology of the Galapagos
Credit Hours: 3
An examination of the factors affecting the distribution and abundance of organisms on the Galapagos Islands. Trip fee required. Prerequisite: BIO 151 or permission of instructor.

BIO 357    Environmental Science I
Credit Hours: 3
A study of ecological, economic, and social aspects of current environmental problems. Topics include the history of environmental problems, human population issues, global problems, soil conservation, and food resources. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.

BIO 358    Environmental Science II
Credit Hours: 3
A continuation of BIO 357. Topics include water resources, biodiversity, wildlife resources, renewable and nonrenewable energy resources, mineral resources, solid waste, air pollution, water pollution, and pesticides. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.

BIO 360    Neurobiology
Credit Hours: 3
This course introduces students to the biology of the nervous system and its relationship to behavior and disease. The course covers topics ranging from neuronal structure and function, communication, the synapse, membrane receptors, and intra- and intercellular signaling systems, to the gross organization of the brain and spinal cord, the processing of sensory information, the programming of motor response, and higher functions, such as hearing, memory, cognition, and speech. While the course is introductory in nature, the level of instruction is rigorous and treats many of the topics in some depth. While this course will have a great degree of serious content, it will also be highly interactive both in the classroom and lab setting. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO 150, 151, 232, 350 and Junior standing.

BIO 370-9  Special Topics
Credit Hours: 1-3
Special topics in biology in depth, depending on demand and staff.

BIO 400     Methods of Teaching Biology
Credit Hours: 3
Designed to acquaint students with instructional strategies for teaching of biological sciences in the secondary school. Required for those seeking state certification. Prerequisite: Acceptance into the teacher education program.

BIO 410     Immunology
Credit Hours: 3
Survey of the immunological system including both humoral and cellular immunological phenomena, immunochemistry, antibody production, immunogenetics, hypersensitivity, tolerance, and immunological reactions. Two lecture periods, two hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO 232.

BIO 433     Endocrinology
Credit Hours: 3
A study of structure and function of the glands of internal secretion. This course will also focus on HPA, HPT, and HPG axes: Hypothalamic Pituitary Adrenal, Hypothalamic Pituitary Thyroid, and Hypothalamic Pituitary Gonadal and their importance to the normal functioning of the body. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.

BIO 435    Plant Field Biology
Credit Hours: 3
Taxonomy, development and ecology of plants especially those of the region. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO 151.

BIO 436    Vertebrate Field Biology
Credit Hours: 3
Survey of resources and methods for studying North American vertebrates including fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.

BIO 440    Bioinformatics/Genomics
Credit Hours: 2
In our lifetime Bioinformatics and Genomics will be a defining turn in our comprehension of how organisms work from the molecular level to organism level. These fields of study are at the cutting edge of science, especially for understanding human disease in the 21st century. Bioinformatics, an interdisciplinary field of biology and computer science, is based on garnering information from large biological databases using algorithms to mine data for relevant and meaningful genetic information. It especially relies on DNA, RNA, and protein sequence databases of organisms. Bioinformatics intersects with genomics, the genetic material of an organism, by utilizing genomic databases. In genomics, the genetic material of an organism is sequenced and patterns that dictate regulation, organizational patterns of gene expression, and how the genome functions as a whole, rather than at the discrete level of genes, is covered.

BIO 470-9  Special Topics
Credit Hours: 3
Special topics in biology in depth, depending on demand and staff.

BIO 480     Independent Research
Credit Hours: 1-3
Individual research performed in consultation with a biology teacher. Primarily for seniors majoring in Biological Sciences.

BIO 497    Coordinating Seminar
Credit Hours: 1
Pertinent topics discussed by students. Required for all biology majors. One lecture period during which students present both written and oral papers.

Biological Sciences majors take two semesters of Fundamentals of Chemistry during their freshman year followed by two semesters of Organic Chemistry. Biochemistry is a recommended elective for students interested in organismal biology. Two semesters of Fundamentals of Physics and a minimum math requirement of Calculus I and a statistics course round out the physical science and math background.

Biology majors take one semester of Chemistry and two semesters of Fundamentals of Physics. A minimum math requirement of college algebra and a statistics course round out the physical science and mathematics background. Thirty-nine hours of biology courses at the 300-400 level allow the student to customize his/her education.

Advanced Placement Opportunity

  • CLEP General Biology Exam may yield 3 semester hours of credit for BIO 150
  • CLEP Microbiology Exam may yield 3 semester hours of credit for BIO 232

Bachelor of Arts in Biology

  • Completion of the Liberal Arts Foundation Program and requirements for undergraduate degrees, pp. 6-10.
  • The technological literacy requirement will be fulfilled through conducting computerized labs and learning how to use the computer for scientific research in all laboratory courses.
  • Core classes: BIO 150, 151, 497 (senior year).
  • 30 hours of Biology electives at the 200-400 level.
  • CHE 125; two semesters of Physics (PHY 211-212).
  • One semester of mathematics at the highest level for which the student is prepared with college algebra as a minimum.
  • One semester of a statistics course.
  • The student needs a minimum GPA of 2.0 in all BIO(logy) courses to receive a degree.
  • The student needs a minimum of 39 semester hours at the 300-400 level (all courses) to receive a degree.

Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences
(Environmental Concentration)

  • Completion of the Liberal Arts Foundation Program and requirements for undergraduate degrees, pp. 6-10.
  • The technological literacy requirement will be fulfilled through conducting computerized labs and learning how to use the computer for scientific research in all laboratory courses.
  • Core classes: BIO 150, 151, 232, 282, 305, 327, 350, and 497 (senior year).
  • Environmental requirements: BIO 221, 321, 357, 358, 435, 436.
  • Required Science classes: CHE 150-151, CHE 302-303, PHY 211-212, CHE 321 (highly recommended).
  • Required Math classes: MAT 242 and a statistics course.
  • The student needs a minimum GPA of 2.0 in all BIO(logy) courses to receive a degree.
  • The student needs a minimum of 39 semester hours at the 300-400 level (all courses) to receive a degree.
  • PHI 325 Environmental Ethics is strongly recommended.

Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences
(Pre-Medical Sciences)

  • Completion of the Liberal Arts Foundation Program and requirements for undergraduate degrees, pp. 6-10.
  • The technological literacy requirement will be fulfilled through conducting computerized labs and learning how to use the computer for scientific research in all laboratory courses.
  • Core classes: BIO 150, 151, 250, 282, 305, 327, 350, 497 (senior year).
  • Pre-professional requirements: BIO 232, 283, 330, 360, 410, and 433.
  • Required Science classes: CHE 150-151, CHE 302-303, PHY 211-212, (CHE 321 highly recommended).
  • Required Math classes: MAT 242 and a statistics course.
  • The student needs a minimum GPA of 2.0 in all BIO(logy) courses to receive a degree.
  • The student needs a minimum of 39 semester hours at the 300-400 level (all courses) to receive a degree.
  • PHI 323 Bioethics is strongly recommended.

Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences
(Pre-Physical Therapy Concentration)

  • General requirements for baccalaureate degree, p. 8.
  • The technological literacy requirement will be fulfilled through conducting computerized labs and through computerized scientific research.
  • Core classes: BIO 150, 151, 232, 282, 283, 305, 327, 328, 350, 354, 360, 410 or 433, 497.
  • Pre-Physical Therapy support requirements: PED 106, 152, 236, 301, 344, 345, 444, 454.
  • Required Science classes: CHE 150-151, PHY 211-212.
  • Required Math classes: MAT 150 and 242.
  • The student needs a minimum GPA of 2.0 in all BIO(logy) courses to receive a degree.
  • The student needs a minimum of 39 semester hours at the 300-400 level (all courses) to receive a degree.
  • PHI 323 Bioethics is strongly recommended.
  • Internships with local physical therapists are strongly recommended.

Teacher Certification

  • Completion of the Liberal Arts Foundation Program and requirements for undergraduate degrees, pp. 6-10 including POL 200, PSY 246, HIS 111 or HIS 112, and PED 265.
  • Required Biology courses: BIO 150, 151, 221, 232, 282 or 283, 305, 327, 340, 350, 357 or 358, 435, and 497 (Senior year).
  • Required support courses: CHE 150, 151, 302 and 309; PHY 211 and 212; MAT 142, a statistics course, and SCI 100.
  • Requirements for teacher licensure listed on pp. 81-83 and BIO 400.
  • A minimum cumulative GPA of 2.600 is required for acceptance into the Teacher Education Program.

Requirements for a Minor

  • The Biology Program offers various programs of study for a Minor (see p. 23). The student should consult with one of the biology faculty members early in order to prepare for such a program.
  • Coursework for a minor includes 18 hours of BIO(logy) credit, only 6 hours of which may be at the 100 level. Must also meet minimum University requirements for a minor.

Biological Sciences

BIO 103 - Problems in the Environment
Credit Hours: 3
A study of ecological principles and current environmental problems including air, water, and noise pollution, population, energy, solid waste disposal, radiation hazards, inorganic contaminants, pesticides, soil conservation. Two lecture periods, two hours laboratory.

BIO 105 - Human Biology
Credit Hours: 3
A non-major course to introduce the student to an understanding of the human body. Two lecture periods and two hours of laboratory.

BIO 111 - Life Sciences
Credit Hours: 4
This course is designed to fulfill the science component of the general education requirements for non-science majors. The course is a combination of various introductory life-science courses and the integration of their contents, including: general biology, ecology, evolution, botany, zoology, and human biology. Three lecture periods, two hours laboratory.

BIO 150 - Principles of Biology I
Credit Hours: 4
A study of the fundamental principles of biology for the biology major. Cell structure and function, genetics and evolution are discussed, with exposure to biological literature and experience in scientific writing skills. Three lecture periods, three hours laboratory.
Recommendation(s): high school biology and chemistry

BIO 151 - Principles of Biology II
Credit Hours: 4
An introduction to the kingdoms of life (Monerans, Protists, Fungi, and Plants), evolution, natural selection, plant structure and plant physiology. Three lecture periods, three hours laboratory.

BIO 221 - Invertebrate Zoology
Credit Hours: 3
Morphology, physiology, life cycles and phylogeny of animal groups from poriferans through echinoderms. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 111 or BIO 150.

BIO 232 - Microbiology
Credit Hours: 3
This course acquaints the students with micro- organisms and their activities. Topics include cell structure and function, metabolism, growth, the role of microorganisms in disease immunity, and other selected areas. The laboratory will stress aseptic technique, culturing methods, control of microbial growth and unknown identification. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 150 and BIO 151.

BIO 250 - Genetics
Credit Hours: 3
An in-depth study of the principles of both classical and molecular genetics. Two lecture periods and three hours laboratory.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 150 and BIO 151.

BIO 270-9 - Special Topics
Credit Hours: 1-3
Special topics in biology in depth, depending on demand and staff.

BIO 282-283 - Anatomy and Physiology I & II
Credit Hours: 4, 4
Two-semester course sequence with a two-hour lab and three lecture periods. First semester, the lab covers anatomy; lectures include cells, tissues, skin, muscle, nerves, and circulatory sys- tem. Second semester, the lab covers physiology; lectures include respiratory, digestive, urinary, endocrine, acid-base balance, and reproductive systems.

BIO 305 Genetics
Credit Hours: 3
An in-depth study of the principles of both classical and molecular genetics. Prerequisites: BIO 150 and 151.

BIO 308 - Medical Technology Orientation
Credit Hours: 1
An orientation to the hospital laboratory. Taken with consent of biology and hospital staff. Minimum of one week of hospital with a written report required. Pass/Fail only.

BIO 325 - Histology
Credit Hours: 3
A study of the microanatomy of normal vertebrate tissues. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.

BIO 327 - General Ecology
Credit Hours: 3
Basic ecological principles with emphasis on the interrelationships between organisms and their environment, populations, communities, and ecosystems. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory and field work.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 151

BIO 328 - Advanced Topics in Anatomy and Physiology
Credit Hours: 3
This course focuses on advanced topics in Anatomy and Physiology for majors. Three hour lecture period.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 282 and 283

BIO 330 - Developmental Biology
Credit Hours: 3
A study of the maturation of gametes, fertiliza- tion, the differentiation of germ layers, and the formation of fetal organ systems in selected vertebrate and some invertebrate types. Labora- tory consists of an intensive, descriptive study of whole mounts and serial sections of starfish, amphioxus, frog, chick and pig. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.
Prerequisite(s): Junior standing
Recommendation(s): BIO 222 or 282-283

BIO 340 - Organic Evolution
Credit Hours: 3
Principles of the neodarwinian process, the central theory of biology.

BIO 350 Molecular Biology
Credit Hours: 3
An in-depth study of the fundamental concepts of structure and function of plants, animals, and microbial cells. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory. Prerequisite: BIO 305 and Junior standing.

BIO 354 - Molecular Biology
Credit Hours: 3
An in-depth study of the fundamental concepts of structure and function of plants, animals, and microbial cells. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 250 and Junior standing.

BIO 354 - Molecular Biology
Credit Hours: 3
A study of the disease process along with the normal physiology of the body systems and the clinical relationships which are appropri- ate. Three lecture periods.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 282-283.

BIO 357 - Environmental Science I
Credit Hours: 3
A study of ecological, economic, and social aspects of current environmental problems. Topics include the history of environmental problems, human population issues, global problems, soil conservation, and food resources. Two lecture periods,three hours laboratory.

BIO 358 - Environmental Science II
Credit Hours: 3
A continuation of BIO 357. Topics include water resources, biodiversity, wildlife resources, renewable and non-renewable energy resources, mineral resources, solid waste, air pollution, water pollution, pesticides, environmental economics, and environmental politics. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 357.

BIO 360 - Neurobiology
Credit Hours: 3
This course introduces students to the biology of the nervous system and its relationship to behavior and disease. The course covers topics ranging from neuronal structure and function, communication, the synapse, mem- brane receptors, and intra- and intercellular signaling systems, to the gross organization of the brain and spinal cord, the processing of sensory information, the programming of motor response, and higher functions, such as hearing, memory, cognition, and speech. While the course is introductory in nature, the level of instruction is rigorous and treats many of the topics in some depth. While this course will have a great degree of serious content, it will also be highly interactive both in the classroom and lab setting. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 150, BIO 151, BIO 232, BIO 350 and Junior standing.

BIO 370-9 - Special Topics
Credit Hours: 1-3
Special topics in biology in depth, depending on demand and staff.

BIO 400 - Methods of Teaching Biology
Credit Hours: 3
Designed to acquaint students with instructional strategies for teaching of biological sciences in the secondary school. Required for those seeking state certification.
Prerequisite(s): Acceptance into the teacher education program.

BIO 410 - Immunology
Credit Hours: 3
Survey of the immunological system includ- ing both humoral and cellular immunologi- cal phenomena, immunochemistry, antibody production, immunogenetics, hypersensitivity, tolerance, and immunological reactions. Two lecture periods, two hours laboratory.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 232

BIO 433 - Endocrinology
Credit Hours: 3
A study of structure and function of the glands of internal secretion. This course will also focus on HPA, HPT, and HPG axes: Hypothalamic Pituitary Adrenal, Hypothalamic Pituitary Thyroid, and Hypothalamic Pituitary Gonadal and their importance to the normal functioning of the body. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.

BIO 435 - Plant Field Biology
Credit Hours: 3
Taxonomy, development and ecology of plants especially those of agricultural and pharmacological importance. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 151

BIO 436 - Vertebrate Field Biology
Credit Hours: 3
Survey of resources and methods for studying North American vertebrates including amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. Two lecture periods, three hours laboratory.

BIO 450 - Cellular and Molecular Biology
Credit Hours: 3
In our lifetime Bioinformatics and Genomics will be a defining turn in our comprehension of how organisms work from the molecular level to organism level. Thee fields of study are at the cutting edge of science, especially for understanding human disease in the 21st century. Bioinformics, an interdisciplinary field of biology and computer science, is based on garnering information from large biological databases using algorithms to mine data for relevant and meaningful genetic information. It especially relies on DNA, RNA, and protein sequence databases of organisms. Bioinformatics intersects with genomics, the genetic material of an organism, by utilizing genomic databases. In genomics, the genetic material of an organ- isms is sequenced and patterns that dictate regulation, organizational patterns of gene expression, and how the genome functions as a whole, rather than at the discrete level of genes, is covered.

BIO 470-9 - Special Topics
Credit Hours: 3
Special topics in biology in depth, depending on demand and staff.

BIO 480 - Independent Research
Credit Hours: 1-3
Individual research performed in consultation with a biology teacher. Primarily for seniors majoring in Biological Sciences.

BIO 497 - Coordinating Seminar
Credit Hours: 1
Pertinent topics discussed by students. Required for all biology majors. One lecture period during which students present both written and oral papers.

Laboratories are the heart and soul of science education, and Quincy provides Biology and Biological Sciences students plenty of lab exercises and activities. You'll have the opportunity to use a variety of techniques and instruments and work in our cadaver lab. Few schools of our size offer a cadaver lab for experiential learning, and at larger schools, your opportunities for guided investigation at this level are rare. QU alumni report time and again that the combination of undergraduate cadaver lab and individualized instruction puts them ahead of the game in medical school.

But your opportunities for active learning don't stop at our laboratories. You can enjoy field experiences, including participation on the Missouri Stream Team and Monarch Watch, not to mention an exciting week in the Galapagos Islands that offers academic credit. Internships help you sort out numerous career options. Quincy students have interned in medical settings, done field and lab work, and contributed to research. Future teachers gain the benefit of the Professional Development School (PDS) model. From your first Education course, you'll learn your craft in a local public or private school, continuously connecting theory with classroom practice.

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