Biology: The UDC Edge

Biology students at the University of the District of Columbia are fully engaged in the research life of the university. Through the STEM Center for Research and Development and other research initiatives offered by UDC and the Biology Program, students can gain research experience as an undergraduate, putting their classroom knowledge to work and providing unique preparation for graduate study or employment in the field.

In addition, the Biology Program is one of a few institutions in the United States that offers a Master of Science Degree in Cancer Biology, Prevention, and Control. Biology masters students have the unique opportunity to work in partnership with expert faculty researchers at the Georgetown University Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center to better understand this debilitating disease.

Bachelor’s Degree (BS) in Biology

The Biology Program is located in the Division of Sciences and Mathematics in the College of Arts and Sciences. The Program offers two academic degrees: Bachelor of Science in Biology and a Master of Science in Cancer Biology, Prevention, and Control.  These degrees are designed to enhance scientific knowledge and career potential for individuals preparing to become biologists, biomedical/cancer researchers or health care professionals. The Biology Program places a special emphasis on inquiry-based learning, giving students the opportunity to engage in grant-funded research as-well-as educational experiences in the metropolitan D.C. area. These real-world experiences—including opportunities to attend seminars and conferences, serve as science fair advisors, visit with the leading health care professionals and researchers in the field, and conduct research in a laboratory setting—complement intensive classroom learning.  The Program has the philosophy of providing undergraduate research experiences to all biology majors, enabling them to enroll in competitive advance degree programs and/or pursue specialized career pathways. Additionally, the Biology Program provides opportunities for non-biology majors to take courses in the biological sciences providing them with a broad undergraduate experience.


Student Last Name Advisor Bldg 44/Rm Email Phone
Seniors & Premed Dr. Rosie Sneed 200-05 274.6022
N,C,B,L,S,K Dr. Brandy Huderson 200-10 274.5889
O,E,D,V, Seniors Dr. Freddie Dixon 200-06 274.6474
Z,T Y,U, Seniors & Premed Dr. Carolyn Cousin 200-07 274.5874
A,Q,I,G,W,M Dr. Deepak Kumar 312 274.7401
J,H,P,R, F, X Dr. Mathilde Knight 200-08 274.5888


Curriculum and Requirements in the UDC Biology Program

The biology program at UDC offers a bachelor of science degree that requires a minimum of 120 credits to graduate. The program is organized around specific knowledge competencies of biology phenomena; tangible skills in research and technology; operation of state-of-the-art scientific instrumentation; ability to collect, analyze, and present scientific information effectively; and apply this information to solving real-world problems.

Students are also exposed to a variety of different facets of biology, including:

  • Microbiology
  • Botany
  • Zoology
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology
  • Physiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Biotechnology
  • Cancer Biology

Program of Study

Student Organizations and Activities in the UDC Biology Program

The biology program at UDC is one of the most active and engaged on campus. Students have the opportunity to participate in a number of activities, including:

  • The NSF/HBCU-UP funded STEM Center for Research and Development is a valuable resource for biology students and other students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines. The center offers courses, research experiences, and enrichment activities designed to strengthen students’ academic skills and engagement, and to increase graduation rates.
  • The UDC-CPDR Undergraduate Research Program is funded by the Department of Defense (DOD). This collaborative Program between UDC and the Center for Prostate Disease Research (CPDR) at the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences provides summer research opportunities in prostate cancer research and year-long mentoring for UDC students. Additionally, the Program includes didactic training and exposes students to cutting-edge prostate cancer research both at the basic and translational level and prepares students to pursue biomedical careers.
  • The NIH/NIGMS funded Maximizing Access to Research Careers (MARC) Program’s goal is to increase the number of underrepresented (UR) biomedical and behavioral scientists by providing students with extensive mentoring, concentrated learning activities, intensive research experiences, and adaptive programs to heighten students’ skills beyond their current academic level.
  • Student Organizations:
    • Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society
    • Beta Kappa Chi Scientific Honor Society
    • Biology Club
    • National Institute of Science

Faculty Spotlight: UDC Biology Program

Carolyn Cousin, Ph.D., professor and program coordinator for the Masters Degree in Cancer Biology, Prevention, and Control is an experienced cell biologist and parasitologist with a longstanding research interest in the area of schistosomiasis. She has received more than $5 million in grants from the NIH and the Agency for International Development to fund this research. Dr. Cousin has served as the principal investigator of a USDA-funded grant to examine the current perception of African Americans on cancer in the District of Columbia. She has received numerous awards and accolades for her teaching and research, both from within the University and from organizations such as the National Institute of Science, the Washington Post, Beta Kappa Chi Scientific Honor Society and the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education.

Bachelor of Science degree in Biology

Click here to download recommended course outline.

The requirement is the completion of 121 credit hours.

Year 1 Semester 1
Course Number Course Name
IGED 110 Foundation Writing I 3
MATH 113 Pre Calculus with Trigonometry I 3
CHEM 111 Chemistry I Lecture 3
CHEM 113 Chemistry I Lab 1
BIOL 101 Biological Science I Lecture 3
BIOL 103 Biological Science I Lab 1
Total  14
Year 1 Semester 2
IGED 111 Foundations Writing II 3
MATH 114 Pre Calculus with Trigonometry II 3
CHEM 112 General Chemistry II Lecture 3
CHEM 114 General Chemistry II Lab 1
BIOL 102 Biological Science II Lecture 3
BIOL 104 Biological Science II Lab 1
IGED 140 Foundation in Ethics & Values 3
Total  17
Year 2 – Semester 3
IGED 210 Discovery Expository Writing in the Arts & Sciences 3
MATH 215 Calculus for Business, Social and Life Sciences 4
BIOL 225 Invertebrate Zoology Lecture 3
BIOL 224 Invertebrate Zoology Lab 1
CHEM 231 Organic Chemistry I Lecture 3
CHEM 233 Organic Chemistry I Lab 2
Total  16
Year 2 – Semester 4
IGED 250 Discovery of Effective Use of Technology 3
IBED 130 Foundations in Oral Communications 3
CHEM 232 Organic Chemistry II Lecture 3
CHEM 234 Organic Chemistry II Lab 2
BIOL 235 Botany Lecture 3
BIOL 234 Botany Lab 1
Total  15
Year 3 – Semester 5
IGED 270 Discovery Diversity 3
PHYS 101 Introduction to College Physics I Lecture 3
PHYS 103 Introduction to College Physics I Lab 1
BIOL 241 General Microbiology I Lecture 3
BIOL 240 General Microbiology I Lab 1
University Elective 3
Total  14
Year 3 – Semester 6
IGED 280 Discovery Civics 3
PHYS 102 Introduction to College Physics II Lecture 3
PHYS 104 Introduction to College Physics II Lab 1
BIOL 361 General Genetics Lecture 3
BIOL 360 General Genetics Lab 1
BIOL 3## *Biology Elective #1 (300 Level or above) 4
Total  15
Year 4 – Semester 7
IGED 391 Frontier Exploration and Inquiry Capstone I 2
CHEM 462 Biochemistry I Lecture (not required but strongly recommended) 3
CHEM 463 Biochemistry I Lab (not required but strongly recommended) 2
BIOL 3## *Biology Elective #2 (300 Level or above) 4
BIOL 3## *Biology Elective #2 (300 Level or above) 4
Total  15
Year 4 – Semester 8
IGED 391 Frontier Exploration and Inquiry Capstone II 1
IGED 280 Discovery Civics 3
BIOL 493 or 494 or 295 Senior Seminar or Journal Club (satisfies req. for “writing course in major”) 2
BIOL 3## *Biology Elective #4 (300 Level or above) 4
University Elective 3
Total  13

At least 120 college-level credit hours must be obtained to receive a B.S. in Biology.
* Each student must take 4 biology electives1 (4 credits, 300 level and above). Cancer Causes and Prevention, Physiology or Ecology (200 level courses) may be used as Biology electives.
University electives are courses of choice along with proper prerequisites, taken in any Department.

Career Pathways and Prospects

With a biology degree from UDC, you are prepared to pursue an employment or advanced graduate study in a wide array of rapidly expanding, high-demand fields:

  • Medicine
  • Academics
  • Dentistry
  • Pharmacy
  • Veterinary sciences
  • Biomedical researcher
  • Cancer biologist
  • Botany
  • Zoology
  • Microbiology
  • Health policy
  • Health care administration
  • Teaching
  • Laboratory research

You may also consider UDC’s Masters Degree Program in Cancer Biology, Prevention, and Control, offered in partnership with Georgetown University’s Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Contact info:

Rosie Sneed, Associate Professor, Program Coordinator

E: | T: 202.274.6022 | F: 202.274.5776