Biochemistry, B.S.

The Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry prepares students for excellence in graduate or medical school, and employment in the chemical, biotechnological, or pharmaceutical industries. Students learn a wide array of topics in Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics. In upper division studies, Biochemistry majors learn to apply biochemical principles to real-life situations via problem-based approaches in their courses. Laboratory courses give students the tools they will need as biochemists to pursue research. Accomplished majors are encouraged to pursue independent research with a professor, and to present their work internally and at national meetings.

Undergraduate Contact Information:

Dr. Allen Nicholson, Chair
Biology-Life Sciences Building, Room 255
215-204-8851

Dr. Dan Strongin, Chair
Beury Hall, Room 130
215-204-7118

Dr. Spiridoula Matsika, Faculty Advisor (Last names A-G)
Beury Hall, Room 242
215-204-7703
spiridoula.matsika@temple.edu

Dr. Robert Stanley, Faculty Advisor (Last names H-N)
Beury Hall, Room 250B
215-204-2027
robert.stanley@temple.edu

Dr. Michael Zdilla, Faculty Advisor (Last names O-Z)
Chemistry Department
Beury Hall, Room 440
215-204-7886
michael.zdilla@temple.edu

Bachelor of Science 

Summary of Requirements for the Degree

  1. University Requirements (123 total s.h.)
    • MATH 0701 (4 s.h.) and/or ENG 0701 (4 s.h.), if required by placement testing.
    • All Temple students must take a minimum of two writing-intensive courses at Temple as part of their major. Following is a list of courses that can be used to satisfy the writing-intensive requirement:
      BIOL 2296Genetics (S)4
      BIOL 3096Cell Structure and Function (F)4
      CHEM 4196Techniques of Chemical Measurement II5
    • Students must complete the General Education (GenEd) requirements.
      • See the General Education section of the Undergraduate Bulletin for the GenEd curriculum.
      • Students who complete CST majors typically receive a waiver for 2 Science & Technology (GS) and 1 Quantitative Literacy (GQ) GenEd courses.
    • Students must satisfy general Temple University residency requirements.
  2. College Requirements
    • 45 Upper Level (2000+) credits within the College of Science & Technology (CST) or the College of Liberal Arts (CLA).
    • 90 credits within the College of Science & Technology (CST) or the College of Liberal Arts (CLA).
  3. Major Requirements for Bachelor of Science (78-81 s.h.)
    At least 10 courses required for the major must be completed at Temple. At least 4 Biology and 4 Chemistry courses must be completed at Temple.
    Chemistry
    Select one of the following:4
    General Chemistry I
    and General Chemistry Laboratory I
    Honors General Chemical Science I
    and Honors Chemical Science Laboratory I (F)
    Select one of the following:4
    General Chemistry II
    and General Chemistry Laboratory II
    Honors General Chemical Science II
    and Honors Chemical Science Laboratory II (S)
    Select one of the following:4
    Organic Chemistry I
    and Organic Chemistry Laboratory I
    Organic Chemistry for Majors I
    and Organic Majors Laboratory I (F)
    Organic Chemistry for Honors I
    and Organic Honors Laboratory I (F)
    Select one of the following:4
    Organic Chemistry II
    and Organic Chemistry Laboratory II
    Organic Chemistry for Majors II
    and Organic Majors Laboratory II (S)
    Organic Chemistry for Honors II
    and Organic Honors Laboratory II (S)
    CHEM 3103
    CHEM 3105
    Techniques of Chemical Measurement I
    and Introduction to Chemical Research Techniques
    4
    CHEM 3301Physical Chemistry Lecture I3
    or CHEM 3405 Physical Chemistry of Biomolecules
    CHEM 4401Biochemistry I3
    Biology
    BIOL 1111Introduction to Biology I4
    or BIOL 1911 Honors Introduction to Biology I
    BIOL 2112Introduction to Biology II4
    or BIOL 2912 Honors Introduction to Biology II
    BIOL 2296Genetics (S)4
    BIOL 3096Cell Structure and Function (F)4
    BIOL 3324Molecular Biology (F)3
    BIOL 4344Research Techniques in Biochemistry (S)4
    BIOL 4376General Biochemistry II (F)3
    Biochemistry Electives
    Select two of the following: 16-9
    Human Genetics (F)
    Developmental Biology (F)
    Advanced Cell Biology (Not offered every year)
    General Microbiology (S)
    Research Techniques in Molecular Biology (S)
    Immunology (S)
    Virology (F)
    Mammalian Physiology (S)
    Systems Neuroscience
    Mammalian Development (Not offered every year)
    Endocrinology (F)
    Biology of Cancer (S)
    Cell Proliferation (S)
    Physical Biochemistry (S)
    Contemporary Biology
    Inorganic Chemistry
    Physical Chemistry Lecture II
    Techniques of Chemical Measurement II
    Physical Chemistry Laboratory I
    and Physical Chemistry Laboratory II
    Organic Structure and Mechanisms (F)
    Mathematics
    Select one of the following:4
    Calculus I with Lab 2
    Calculus I
    Honors Calculus I (F)
    MATH 1042Calculus II4
    or MATH 1942 Honors Calculus II
    MATH 2043Calculus III4
    or MATH 2943 Honors Calculus III
    Physics
    Select one of the following:4
    Elementary Classical Physics I
    Honors Elementary Classical Physics I (F)
    General Physics I
    Honors General Physics I (F)
    Select one of the following:4
    Elementary Classical Physics II
    Honors Elementary Classical Physics II (S)
    General Physics II
    Honors General Physics II (S)
    Total Credit Hours78-81
    (F) - Fall only course
    (S) - Spring only course
    1

    With approval from the faculty advisor, two semesters of Undergraduate Research (BIOL 4391/BIOL 4491 or CHEM 3881/CHEM 3891/CHEM 4881/CHEM 4891) for a minimum of 6 credits can be used to fulfill one of the Biochemistry electives.

    2

    Students who choose MATH 1038 must also take the linked course MATH 1039.

    Note: A grade of C or higher in CHEM 1031 or its Honors alternate is required to take BIOL 1111. Grades of C or higher in both CHEM 1031 and CHEM 1032 or their Honors alternates are required to take BIOL 2112. Grades of C or higher in BIOL 1111 and BIOL 2112 or their Honors alternates are required to take upper-level Biology courses, and a C- or higher is required unless otherwise specified in all other courses for the major, including course prerequisites. Most research and Independent Study courses are not available for major credit, such as:

    BIOL 3091Research Methods3
    BIOL 3681Cooperative Studies2 to 4
    BIOL 4291Extradepartmental Research1 to 4
    BIOL 4483Accelerated Research in Biochemistry3
    BIOL 4491Research in Biochemistry3
    BIOL 4591Research in Neuroscience1 to 4

Calculation of Major GPA

The list of courses that are used to calculate major GPA is determined by the department. Students should consult with their academic advising unit for the applicable courses. In general, courses that could not apply toward the major as an elective or a required course are not counted for the major GPA. This would include BIOL 1011, for example.

Distinction in Major

To graduate with Distinction in Major, students are required to achieve a 3.33 GPA or higher in all the Biology and Chemistry courses in their major.

Suggested Academic Plan

All prospective majors should schedule an appointment with one of the departmental advisors (names of current Faculty Advisors are available in the About section) to plan a program of study. The recommended order of courses for the major is listed below; a different order is acceptable as long as the student adheres to prerequisite requirements.

Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry

Requirements for New Students starting in the 2016-2017 Academic Year

Year 1
FallCredit Hours
Select one of the following:4
General Chemistry I 
Honors General Chemical Science I (F) 
Select one of the following:4
Calculus I with Lab1 
Calculus I 
Honors Calculus I (F) 
General Education/Elective Credits7
 Term Credit Hours15
Spring
BIOL 1111 or 1911Introduction to Biology I4
Select one of the following:4
General Chemistry II 
Honors General Chemical Science II (S) 
MATH 1042 or 1942Calculus II4
General Education/Elective Credits3
 Term Credit Hours15
Year 2
Fall
BIOL 2112 or 2912Introduction to Biology II4
Select one of the following:4
Organic Chemistry I 
Organic Chemistry for Majors I (F) 
Organic Chemistry for Honors I (F) 
Select one of the following:4
Elementary Classical Physics I 
Honors Elementary Classical Physics I (F) 
General Physics I 
Honors General Physics I (F) 
General Education/Elective Credits3
 Term Credit Hours15
Spring
BIOL 2296Genetics [WI] (S)4
Select one of the following:4
Organic Chemistry II 
Organic Chemistry for Majors II (S) 
Organic Chemistry for Honors II (S) 
Select one of the following:4
Elementary Classical Physics II 
Honors Elementary Classical Physics II (S) 
General Physics II 
Honors General Physics II (S) 
General Education/Elective Credits3
 Term Credit Hours15
Year 3
Fall
BIOL 3096Cell Structure and Function [WI] (F)4
CHEM 3103Techniques of Chemical Measurement I3
CHEM 3105Introduction to Chemical Research Techniques1
MATH 2043 or 2943Calculus III4
General Education/Elective Credits3
 Term Credit Hours15
Spring
CHEM 4401Biochemistry I3
Select one of the following:3
Physical Chemistry Lecture I 
Physical Chemistry of Biomolecules2 
General Education/Elective Credits10
 Term Credit Hours16
Year 4
Fall
BIOL 3324Molecular Biology (F)3
BIOL 4376General Biochemistry II (F)3
Biochemistry Elective33-4
General Education/Elective Credits7-6
 Term Credit Hours16
Spring
BIOL 4344Research Techniques in Biochemistry (S)4
Biochemistry Elective33-5
General Education/Elective Credits9-7
 Term Credit Hours16
 Total Credit Hours: 123
1

Students who choose MATH 1038 must also take the linked course MATH 1039.

2

Biochemistry majors taking CHEM 3405 instead of CHEM 3301 cannot also receive Biochemistry elective credit for it. Biochemistry majors who want to take CHEM 4196 or the combination of CHEM 3397 & CHEM 3398 as a Biochemistry elective must take the CHEM 3301-CHEM 3302 sequence as CHEM 3405 does not serve as a prerequisite for these courses or any other course that has CHEM 3301 as a prerequisite or co-requisite. 

3

It is strongly encouraged that CHEM 3103/CHEM 3105 be taken prior to any laboratory courses numbered above CHEM 3105.

(F) - Fall only course
(S) - Spring only course

Biochemistry Electives

Students are required to take two advanced biochemistry electives from the following list:

Select two of the following:6-8
Human Genetics (F)
Developmental Biology (F)
Advanced Cell Biology (S)
General Microbiology (S)
Research Techniques in Molecular Biology (S)
Immunology (S)
Virology (F)
Mammalian Physiology (S)
Systems Neuroscience
Mammalian Development
Endocrinology (F)
Biology of Cancer (S)
Cell Proliferation (S)
Physical Biochemistry (S)
Contemporary Biology (F)
Inorganic Chemistry (F)
Physical Chemistry Lecture II
Techniques of Chemical Measurement II
Physical Chemistry Laboratory I
and Physical Chemistry Laboratory II
Organic Structure and Mechanisms (F)

Notes:

  1. Other courses may be acceptable with the permission of one of the biochemistry faculty advisors.
  2. With approval from the faculty advisor, two semesters of Undergraduate Research (BIOL 4391/BIOL 4491 or CHEM 3881/CHEM 3891/CHEM 4881/CHEM 4891) for a minimum of 6 credits can be used to fulfill one of the Biochemistry electives.