Students who want to apply their science knowledge in a career focused on infectious disease (including diagnostics), human/animal health, biotechnology, or the well-being and safety of our environment or food and beverage supply would do well to consider a major in microbiology.  Microbiology is a diverse field that involves applying cutting-edge knowledge to critical problems.

You might find microbiologists:

  • performing technical and diagnostic work in research laboratories, hospitals and clinics,
  • directing product development at a company creating products related to human health, or
  • focusing on emerging pathogens as part of a government effort to stem bioterrorism.

Microbiologists are also essential to the food and beverage industry, where they play an essential role in quality control related to the production of beer, wine, cheese, bread and yogurt.  The biotechnology industry also relies on genetically engineered microorganisms as a means for removing toxic wastes and spills from the environment.

Laboratory research is an important part of the major, and is offered to our students in a number of different ways.  Classroom laboratories give every student the foundation to move into advanced laboratories focusing on bacteriology, immunology, virology, parasitology, prion diseases, and genetics.  Our department is home to dozens of working laboratories where students collaborate with some of the best scientists in the world.  From tuberculosis, HIV, and leprosy to vector-borne illnesses and illness transmitted from animals to humans, there is ample opportunity to graduate having gained extensive research experience that translates into opportunities for immediate employment, as well as admission to graduate and professional programs.  Graduates with a career interest in diagnostics often seek admission to clinical laboratory schools, which provide a very intense year of additional training, culminating in the ASCP board of certification examination.  This career path is an essential part of health care in clinics and hospitals across the country.

Students who aim for professional school find that the microbiology major includes everything needed to be a competitive applicant.  With coursework in microbiology, biology, anatomy and physiology, chemistry, biochemistry, physics, math, and statistics, microbiology majors have a competitive advantage when applying to veterinary, medical, physician’s assistant, dental, and optometry programs, especially given the hands-on research opportunities that are offered both inside and outside of the classroom.

If you have an investigative mindset, a solid science foundation, and a willingness to think outside of the box, microbiology would be an excellent fit.  If you are intrigued by topics as diverse as the microbiome, bioengineering, prions or computational biology, we offer a great major.  If you want to work in vaccine development, pharmaceuticals or human/animal health; if you want to work with food and beverages that involve microbes--you will love microbiology!  If you are interested in the work of the CDC or FDA; if you are intrigued at the thought of a career focused on bioterrorism or disease outbreaks here and abroad, microbiology would be a wonderful step towards that goal.  Career opportunities will continue to grow because microbiology is at the center of complex issues facing our world today, as well as at the forefront of incredible innovation and development. Microbiologists contribute to the health and well-being of our world and those we care about.   

For more information please visit the Department of Microbiology.  

Effective Fall 2018

CHEM 111General Chemistry I (GT-SC2)3A4
CHEM 112General Chemistry Lab I (GT-SC1)3A1
CHEM 113General Chemistry II 3
CHEM 114General Chemistry Lab II 1
CO 150College Composition (GT-CO2)1A3
LIFE 102Attributes of Living Systems (GT-SC1)3A4
MIP 250Eukaryotic Microbiology 3
MIP 260The World of Parasites 3
Select a minimum of 3 credits from the following:1B3-4
College Algebra in Context II (GT-MA1)1B 
Logarithmic and Exponential Functions (GT-MA1)1B 
Numerical Trigonometry (GT-MA1)1B 
Analytic Trigonometry (GT-MA1)1B 
Calculus for Biological Scientists I (GT-MA1)1B 
Calculus for Physical Scientists I (GT-MA1)1B 
Microbiology Elective (See list below) 2
Elective 3
 Total Credits 30-31
BC 351Principles of Biochemistry 4
MIP 300General Microbiology 3
MIP 302General Microbiology Laboratory 2
MIP 342Immunology 4
Select one group from the following: 5-8
Group A  
Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry  
Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry Laboratory  
Group B  
Modern Organic Chemistry I  
Modern Organic Chemistry II  
Modern Organic Chemistry Laboratory  
Microbiology Electives (See list below) 2-5
Historical Perspectives3D3
Social and Behavioral Sciences3C3
Elective 2
 Total Credits 31
Select one course from the following: 5
General Physics I (GT-SC1)3A 
Physics for Scientists and Engineers I (GT-SC1)3A 
Select one course from the following: 3-4
Microbial Physiology  
Microbial Genetics  
Microbiology Electives (See list below) 7
Advanced Writing23
Arts and Humanities3B3
Global and Cultural Awareness3E3
Electives 5
 Total Credits 29-30
MIP 351Medical Bacteriology4B3
MIP 420Medical and Molecular Virology4A4
MIP 492Senior Professional Development Seminar 2
Select one course from the following: 2-3
Capstone in Microbiology: Medical Microbiology4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Biotechnology4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Immunology4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Microbial Diversity/Ecology4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Microbial Genetics4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Virology4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Service Learning4C 
Select one course from the following: 3
Introduction to Statistical Methods  
Introduction to Biostatistics  
Microbiology Electives (See list below) 8
Arts and Humanities3B3
Electives2 2-5
 Total Credits 28-30
 Program Total Credits: 120

Microbiology Electives 

Select a minimum of 22 credits from the following not taken elsewhere in the program. CHEM 343 may count as a Microbiology Elective for students who select organic chemistry Group B in the Sophomore year.
A minimum of two laboratory courses MUST be selected from the following:
Introduction to Research Methods
Food Microbiology Laboratory
Immunology Laboratory
Medical Bacteriology Laboratory
Virology and Cell Culture Laboratory
Microbial Ecology Laboratory
Parasitology and Vector Biology
Microbial and Molecular Genetics Laboratory
A maximum of two unique courses, maximum of 6 credits, may be selected from the following:
Introductory Research
Supervised College Teaching
Independent Study
ANEQ 460Meat Safety2
BC 404Comprehensive Biochemistry Laboratory2
BC 463Molecular Genetics3
BMS 300Principles of Human Physiology4
BMS 301Human Gross Anatomy5
BMS 305Domestic Animal Gross Anatomy4
BMS 325Cellular Neurobiology3
BMS 401Laboratory Research in Biomedical Sciences4
BMS 450Pharmacology3
BSPM 302Applied and General Entomology2
BZ 220Introduction to Evolution3
BZ 310Cell Biology4
BZ 333Introductory Mycology4
BZ 346Population and Evolutionary Genetics3
BZ 350Molecular and General Genetics4
BZ 360Bioinformatics and Genomics3
BZ 418Ecology of Infectious Diseases4
BZ 577/MIP 577Computer Analysis in Population Genetics2
BZ 578/MIP 578Genetics of Natural Populations4
CHEM 334Quantitative Analysis Laboratory1
CHEM 335Introduction to Analytical Chemistry3
CHEM 343Modern Organic Chemistry II 13
ERHS 210Cancer Biology, Medicine, and Society2
ERHS 320Environmental Health - Water and Food Safety3
ERHS 332Principles of Epidemiology3
ERHS 502Fundamentals of Toxicology3
ERHS 567Cell and Molecular Toxicology Techniques3
FTEC 360Brewing Processes3
FTEC 460Brewing Science and Technology3
FTEC 574Current Issues in Food Safety2
HORT 477Enology-History and Winemaking3
LIFE 103Biology of Organisms-Animals and Plants4
LIFE 201BIntroductory Genetics: Molecular/Immunological/Developmental (GT-SC2)3
LIFE 203Introductory Genetics Laboratory2
LIFE 210Introductory Eukaryotic Cell Biology3
LIFE 211Introductory Cell Biology Honors Recitation1
LIFE 212Introductory Cell Biology Laboratory2
LIFE 320Ecology3
MATH 155Calculus for Biological Scientists I (GT-MA1)4
MATH 160Calculus for Physical Scientists I (GT-MA1)4
MIP 192Microbiology First-Year Seminar2
MIP 275Microcomputing Applications in Microbiology2
MIP 303General Microbiology--Honors Recitation1
MIP 315Pathology of Human and Animal Disease3
MIP 334Food Microbiology3
MIP 350Microbial Diversity3
MIP 400ACapstone in Microbiology: Medical Microbiology2
MIP 400BCapstone in Microbiology: Biotechnology2
MIP 400CCapstone in Microbiology: Immunology2
MIP 400DCapstone in Microbiology: Microbial Diversity/Ecology2
MIP 400ECapstone in Microbiology: Microbial Genetics2
MIP 400FCapstone in Microbiology: Virology2
MIP 400GCapstone in Microbiology: Service Learning2
MIP 432Microbial Ecology3
MIP 436Industrial Microbiology4
MIP 443Microbial Physiology4
MIP 450Microbial Genetics3
MIP 496Group Study1-3
MIP 530Advanced Molecular Virology4
MIP 540Biosafety in Research Laboratories2
MIP 555Principles and Mechanisms of Disease3
MIP 563Biology of Disease Vectors3
MIP 570Functional Genomics3
PH 122General Physics II (GT-SC1)5
SOCR 330Principles of Genetics3
SOCR 455Soil Microbiology3
SOCR 456Soil Microbiology Laboratory1
VS 331Histology4
VS 333Domestic Animal Anatomy4

 Distinctive Requirements for Degree Program
To prepare for first semester: 
The curriculum for the Microbiology major assumes students enter college prepared to take MATH 124. Entering students who are not prepared to take MATH 124 will need to prerequisite requirements in the first semester. Those requirements are listed as benchmark courses in Freshman Semester 1 below. LIFE 102 requires high school chemistry as a prerequisite; CHEM 111 requires Algebra II as a prerequisite (this prerequisite is met by having Algebra II by test credit, transfer credit, or placement out of MATH 117 and MATH 118 on Math Placement Exam).

Semester 1CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
CHEM 111General Chemistry I (GT-SC2)X 3A4
CHEM 112General Chemistry Lab I (GT-SC1)X 3A1
LIFE 102Attributes of Living Systems (GT-SC1)X 3A4
MIP 250Eukaryotic MicrobiologyX  3
Select 0-1 credits from the following:   0-1
College Algebra in Context II (GT-MA1)  1B 
Logarithmic and Exponential Functions (GT-MA1) X1B 
Numerical Trigonometry (GT-MA1)  1B 
Analytic Trigonometry (GT-MA1)  1B 
Microbiology Electives (See list on Requirements Tab)   2
MATH 124 must be completed by the end of Semester 1, if necessary.X   
 Total Credits   14-15
Semester 2CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
CHEM 113General Chemistry IIX  3
CHEM 114General Chemistry Lab IIX  1
CO 150College Composition (GT-CO2) X1A3
MIP 260The World of ParasitesX  3
Select 2-4 credits from the following:   2-4
Logarithmic and Exponential Functions (GT-MA1)  1B 
Numerical Trigonometry (GT-MA1)  1B 
Analytic Trigonometry (GT-MA1)  1B 
Calculus for Biological Scientists I (GT-MA1)  1B 
Calculus for Physical Scientists I (GT-MA1)  1B 
Elective   3
CO 150 must be completed by the end of semester 2.X   
3-4 credits of MATH must be completed by the end of semester 2.X   
MATH 125 must be completed by the end of semester 2.X   
 Total Credits   15-17
Semester 3CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
MIP 300General MicrobiologyX  3
MIP 302General Microbiology LaboratoryX  2
Select one group from the following:   5
Group A    
Fundamentals of Organic ChemistryX   
Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry LaboratoryX   
Group B    
Modern Organic Chemistry I    
Microbiology Elective – 2 credits
Social and Behavioral Sciences  3C3
Elective   2
 Total Credits   15
Semester 4CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
BC 351Principles of Biochemistry X 4
MIP 342ImmunologyX  4
Select the same Group (A or B) as selected Semester 3:   5
Group A:     
Microbiology Electives – 5 credits
Group B:    
Modern Organic Chemistry II    
Modern Organic Chemistry Laboratory    
Historical Perspectives  3D3
 Total Credits   16
Semester 5CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
Select MIP 450 Semester 5 if MIP 443 will not be taken Semester 6:   0-3
Microbial Genetics    
Select one course from the following:   5
General Physics I (GT-SC1)XX3A 
Physics for Scientists and Engineers I (GT-SC1)X 3A 
Microbiology Elective (See list on Requirements Tab)   0-3
Arts and Humanitites  3B3
Global and Cultural Awareness  3E3
Elective   2
 Total Credits   16
Semester 6CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
Select MIP 443 Semester 6 if MIP 450 was not taken Semester 5:   0-4
Microbial Physiology    
Microbiology Electives (See list on Requirements Tab)   4-7
Advanced Writing  23
Elective   3
Select MIP 450 (Fall) or MIP 443 (Spring) by end of semester 6.X   
 Total Credits   13-14
Semester 7CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
MIP 420Medical and Molecular VirologyX 4A4
MIP 492Senior Professional Development Seminar   2
Select one AUCC 4C course from the following:X 4C2-3
Capstone in Microbiology: Medical Microbiology  4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Biotechnology  4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Immunology  4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Microbial Diversity/Ecology  4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Microbial Genetics  4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Virology  4C 
Capstone in Microbiology: Service Learning  4C 
Research  4C 
Select one course from the following:   3
Introduction to Statistical Methods    
Introduction to Biostatistics    
Microbiology Elective (See list on Requirements Tab)   3
 Total Credits   14-15
Semester 8CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
MIP 351Medical BacteriologyX 4B3
Arts and HumanitiesX 3B3
Microbiology Electives (See list on Requirements Tab)X  5
ElectivesX  2-5
The benchmark courses for the 8th semester are the remaining courses in the entire program of study.X   
 Total Credits   13-16
 Program Total Credits:   120