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Biology Majors

Bioinformatics Option for Biology Majors

Goal          Curriculum          Sequence           Advisors

Purpose and Goals

With the advent of genomics and proteomics, biology is evolving from a mainly  experimental  science  performed  at  the  bench  to  one  in  which  large  databases  of  information and computer models play a significant role.  The analysis of many complex  biological systems such as neuronal patterning, integrated metabolic pathways, and genes  involved in signal transduction networks, requires that the research biologist have more  than  just  a  passing  understanding  of  computers  and  their  use  in  modern  biological  research.  Today’s biology students must therefore not only learn to perform in vivo and  in vitro, but also must become familiar with in silico research.

Bioinformatics is a burgeoning field with plenty of career opportunities.  People  working  in this  field  must have a solid  background  in  biology,  math  and computer  science with an emphasis on quantitative reasoning.  An ideal candidate for the bioinformatics  concentration could be a biology major with a minor in computer science. Our goal is to  prepare undergraduate students majoring in biology for employment as  bioinformaticists  in  biomedical  research  and for graduate studies  in bioinformatics at both the  Master’s and the Ph.D. levels.

Biology QuBi concentrators will employ research tools to analyze biological databases in search of biomedical discoveries.  They will have sufficient knowledge of computer programming, database design and of statistical methods to perform computational and statistical analyses of data generated by high throughput technologies.

Curriculum (71-74 credits)

Students concentrating in bioinformatics will fulfill the requirements for the  Biology Major with three differences.  First, they will have one extra semester of math.   Second, two biology courses will be replaced with 2 computer science courses with labs.   Third, instead of taking 10 credits of upper division biology electives, they will take 10  credits of upper division Chemistry, Anthropology, Math and Biology electives.  Below  is the curriculum developed for the Bioinformatics concentration. 

BIOL 100 Principles of Biology I, 4.5 cr.
BIOL 102 Principles of Biology II, 4.5 cr.
BIOL 203 Molecular Biology and Genetics, 4.5 cr.
BIOL 300 Biological Chemistry, 4.5 cr. or BIOL 303 Cell Biology, 4.5 cr.
BIOL 425 Computational Molecular Biology, 3 cr. (NEW)
BIOL 471 Special Topics (Genomics, Proteomics or Protein Structure), 3 cr.

CHEM 102 General Chemistry I, 3 cr.
CHEM 104 General Chemistry II, 3 cr.
CHEM 106 General Chemistry Lab, 3 cr.
CHEM 222 Organic Chemistry I, 3 cr.
CHEM 224 Organic Chemistry II, 3 cr.

STAT 213 Intro Applied Statistics, 3 cr.
MATH 150 Calculus I, 4 cr.
MATH 155 Calculus II, 4 cr.
PHYS 110 or 111 General Physics I, 4.5 or 5.5 cr.
PHYS 120 or 121 General Physics II, 4.5 or 5.5 cr.

CSCI 132 Practical UNIX & Programming, 3 cr. (NEW)
CSCI 232 Relational Database & SQL, 3 cr. (NEW)

Electives (5 credits – at least one course must be at the 300 level)

BIOL 375 Molecular Evolution, 3 cr.
ANTHP 302 Human Genetics, 3 cr.
CHEM 388 Chemical Genomics, 3 cr. (NEW)
STAT 319 Bayesian Statistical Inference in theSciences, 3 cr. (NEW)
BIOL 470, BIOL 471, BIOL 480, BIOL 481, 3 cr. each

Sample Course Sequence*

*Please see a QuBi advisor for individualized course plans
Fall (Year 1) – 7.5 credits

BIOL 100     (4.5 credits)
CHEM 102    (3 credits)

Spring (Year 1) – 13.5 credits

BIOL 102    (4.5 credits)
CHEM 104   (3 credits)
CHEM 106   (3 credits)
STAT 213     (3 credits)

Fall (Year 2) – 12 credits

BIOL 203     (4.5 credits)   
PHYS 110     (4.5 credits)
CHEM 222    (3 credits)

Spring (Year 2) – 11.5 credits

CHEM 224   (3 credits)   
PHYS 120    (4.5 credits)    
MATH 150    (4 credits) 

Fall (Year 3) – 7.5 credits

BIOL 300     (4.5 credits)   
CSCI 132     (3 credits)

Spring (Year 3) – 7 credits 

CSCI 232   (3 credits)        
MATH 155   (4 credits)

Fall (Year 4) – 5 credits

BIOL 471     (2 credits)   
STAT 319     (3 credits)

Spring (Year 4) – 5 credits

BIOL 471  (2 credits)   
BIOL 425  (3 credits)    

Faculty Advisers

Dr Weigang Qiu (212) 772-5296,

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