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Program Pathways

Biological Sciences Program Pathways

The Biological Sciences Department has identified three principle Biology program pathways that can be pursued while attending GRCC.  In addition, the Department has outlined courses that contribute to the College’s General Education, MACRAO, and Degree requirements.

The following is a description and flowchart for each of the program pathways as well as a listing of those Biology courses that fulfill the General Education requirement.  Students should use this information in conjunction with the catalog descriptions and input from counselors and/or faculty members in Biological Sciences Department.  It is advisable to consult with your expected transfer institution for the appropriate course sequences and special requirements that they may have.

The GRCC Nursing/Allied Health program pathway (click on Flowchart1 link) includes courses that support the Nursing and Allied Health programs at GRCC.  Any or all of these courses may be taken before a student actually enters one of these programs.  See the specific programs for more information. 

Some students may choose to take either BI 117 (General Human Anatomy and Physiology) or BI 101 (General Biology) as a way of enhancing their knowledge and/ or learning skills, prior to taking their program-required courses. 

BI 121 and BI 122 (Human Anatomy and Physiology 1 and 2) are sequential courses.  A grade of C- or better must be obtained to move from BI 121 to BI 122.  BI 240 (Pathophysiology) may be taken upon successful completion (C- or better) of BI 121 and BI 122.

Either BI 126 (Foundations of Medical Microbiology) or BI 127 (Microbiology) may be taken to fulfill a requirement of the GRCC Nursing program.  Students who plan to continue onto a Bachelor in Nursing (BSN) program are recommended to take BI 127 as it transfers to most universities and fulfills a laboratory requirement.  Students in the GRCC Dental Assistant program are required to take BI 127.   See specific programs for details.

Either of the Microbiology courses may be taken in any order or concurrently with the Anatomy and Physiology sequence.

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Students pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing/Health Science transfer program pathway (click on Flowchart2 link) will begin their studies here at GRCC and transfer to a four-year college or university.  Many of the required courses can be taken here at GRCC. 

Some students may choose to take either BI 117 (General Human Anatomy and Physiology) or BI 101 (General Biology) as a way of enhancing their knowledge and/ or learning skills, prior to taking the program required courses. 

BI 121 and BI 122 (Human Anatomy and Physiology 1 and 2) are sequential courses.  A grade of C- or better must be obtained to move from BI 121 to BI 122.  BI 240 (Pathophysiology) may be taken upon successful completion (C- or better) of BI 121 and BI 122.

BI 127 (Microbiology) is required for these programs.  BI 126 (Foundations of Medical Microbiology) is not intended to transfer into these programs.

BI 151 (Introduction to Cells, Molecules, and Genes) is an entry level course for these programs and for pre-professionals such as biology majors and pre-medical programs.  BI 232 (Genetics) may be taken upon successful completion (C- or better) of BI 151.  Students pursuing a major or minor in biology may choose to enroll in BI 152 Biological Diversity.

The BI 121 and BI 122 sequence, BI 127, and BI 151 may be taken in any order or concurrently.

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Students pursuing a Biology Major or transferring to a Pre-professional program (click on Flowchart3 link) may begin their studies here at GRCC and transfer to a four-year college or university.  While BI 101 (General Biology) is not required in this program pathway, it can serve as a starting point for students who wish to enhance their knowledge or learning skills prior to taking the required courses. 

There are two alternate program pathways that students may follow, each with multiple starting points.  One pathway begins with students taking either BI 151 (Introduction to Cells, Molecules, and Genes) or BI 152 (Biological Diversity).  Both courses are required for this program pathway.  They may be taken in any order.  Upon successful completion (C- or better) of one or the other of these courses, students may enroll in BI 205 (Plant Taxonomy at Pierce Cedar Creek), BI 206 (Field Studies at Pierce Cedar Creek), and/or BI 215 (General Ecology).

Another pathway includes students beginning their studies by enrolling in either BI 151 (Introduction to Cells Molecules and Genes) or BI 153 (Plant Biology) or BI 154 (Animal Biology).  All three courses are required for this program pathway.  These courses may be taken in any order.  The combined BI 153 and BI 154 pathway (8 credits) is effectively equivalent to BI 152 (Biological Diversity) (4 credits) plus a biology elective (4 credits).  This is true for GVSU but should be verified for other transfer` institution.  Upon successful completion (C- or better) of any one of these courses, students may enroll in BI 205 (Plant Taxonomy at Pierce Cedar Creek), BI 206 (Field Studies at Pierce Cedar Creek), and/or BI 215 (General Ecology).

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GRCC Biological Sciences Courses for

General Education/MACRAO, and Degree Requirements

Most programs and degrees require a science course experience, often with a laboratory component.  The following courses in the Biological Sciences can be used in various ways to fulfill curricula requirements (click on Flowchart4 link).  See the GRCC course catalog for a full description of the courses.

BI 101 (General Biology) is the most popular course taken by non-science major students.  Its primary focus is to relate various biological topics to students’ lives.  This course fulfills a laboratory science requirement.

BI 117 (General Human Anatomy and Physiology) is taken by some students in the Criminal Justice programs and by those interested in possibly pursuing a career in Nursing or Allied Health.  This course fulfills a laboratory science requirement.

BI 125 (Personal Health) is designed to expand students’ knowledge of selected health topics.  This is not a laboratory course and therefore does not fulfill a laboratory science requirement.

BI 153 (Plant Biology) and BI 154 (Animal Biology) are laboratory courses taken by Biology Major/Pre-professional program students and by those who have an interest in a more in-depth study of plant or animal biology.  These courses fulfill a laboratory science requirement.

BI 151 (Introduction to Cells, Molecules, and Genes) and BI 152 (Biological Diversity) are laboratory courses taken by Biology Major/Pre-professional program students.  These courses fulfill a laboratory science requirement.

BI 205 (Plant Taxonomy at Pierce Cedar Creek) and BI 206 (Field Studies at Pierce Cedar Creek) are residential field courses conducted off campus.  BI 151 thorough BI 154 can all be used to fulfill the prerequisite for these two courses.  These are not laboratory courses and therefore do not fulfill a laboratory science requirement.