Course Requirements

Student in lab coat at computer.

At MIT, we refer to “majors” as “courses” and each course has an assigned number. Biology courses include 7, 7A, 5-7, and 6-7. We also offer a Biology Minor.

The flexibility of Course 7 and 7A allow for many possibilities to complete course requirements and explore subjects in other departments. Your advisor and your peers can be a great resource when considering your own course roadmap.

Course 7

Designed to prepare students for a research career in the biological sciences.

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Sample Course Roadmap


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Course 7A

Designed for students who wish to obtain a background in biology without performing independent research.

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Course 5-7

Designed for students interested in the intersection of chemistry and biology, encompassing both biochemistry and chemical biology.

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Course 6-7

Designed for students interested in the emerging field of computational biology.

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Biology Minor

Provides a depth of understanding and expertise in Biology as a complement to your chosen major.

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You can declare a minor after your first year. To apply, contact Joshua Stone in the Biology Education Office (68-120).

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Minor forms

Communications requirement

All Biology majors must complete two Communication Intensive (CI-M) courses, generally by their junior or senior year. CI-M courses teach the specific forms of written, oral, and/or visual communication appropriate to Biology’s professional and academic culture. Learn more about the CI-M requirement.

Advising

All students in the Biology department are assigned a faculty advisor. You are required to meet with your advisor at least twice a semester during mid-term and registration periods and may schedule additional meetings as needed.

Your advisor can assist with:

  • Course selection and online approvals
  • Online add/drop approvals
  • Academic progress
  • Career advice

To aid in advisor selection, complete the Advisor Preference Survey.

Frequently asked questions