Skip to main content

Visit LAKERS TOGETHER for COVID policies and information. Face coverings required indoors.

2020-2021 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog

Search Help

Combined Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Cell and Molecular Biology

Qualified undergraduates may be admitted to an accelerated bachelor's/master's program and obtain both a B.S. and an M.S. in cell and molecular biology within an accelerated time frame. Students admitted to this program may take graduate courses after completing 90 undergraduate credits, and up to 12 credits of graduate work may be used in partial satisfaction of the requirements for the undergraduate degree (in alignment with university policy, a maximum of 12 credit hours of graduate work will count toward both the graduate and undergraduate degrees). If students earn at least a grade of B in each of these classes, they are granted advanced standing in the master's program and must then complete an additional 23 credits to receive the master's degree. All other master's degree requirements must be met, including an internship and the graduate Capstone. After completing 120 credits and all requirements for the bachelor's degree, students are awarded a bachelor's degree. A minimum of 23 graduate credits must be completed after the 120 credits for the bachelor's degree are completed (the M.S. program requires 35 hours).

Students with an overall GPA of at least 3.25 may apply to the combined bachelor's/master's program after

Note: While students may count BIO 120 for CMB 155, CMB 156 will be required for all CMB majors.


Students typically apply directly to the Department of Cell and Molecular Biology for the combined B.S./M.S. program during their third academic year.

Application requirements include:

  • GPA of 3.25 or greater
  • Completion of the nine core courses listed previously with a grade of at least B in five of the nine courses and no less than a C+ in any of the nine courses.
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Academic transcripts (unofficial transcripts are OK)
  • Letter of intent
  • Cover letter

All students who submit complete applications will be interviewed by two to three faculty members. Admission decisions will be made by a departmental admissions committee based on the student's previous academic success in CMB, as indicated by GPA and grades in the core CMB curriculum, as well as potential success in the graduate program, as indicated by the letters of recommendation, the student's letter of intent and the interview. Decisions will normally be communicated to students within four weeks of submitting a complete application to the combined degree program in CMB.


During Undergraduate Studies (First Eight Semesters)

All university requirements, including general education courses, must be completed before the final (graduate) year of the combined B.S./M.S. program. In the final undergraduate year, students will take 12 to 15 credits of graduate-level courses. If any courses are dual-listed, students in the accelerated B.S./M.S. program must complete all assignments expected of graduate students and they will be evaluated in the same way as graduate students.

  • Students will earn 12 graduate credits during their undergraduate program.
  • Students will be considered undergraduates for tuition, academic requirements, and financial aid purposes until all requirements for the undergraduate degree are completed. Following this they will be considered graduate students, will pay graduate tuition, and will be eligible for graduate financial aid.
  • At least three credits of independent research (CMB 499) or internship (CMB 490), as well as the undergraduate Capstone course, will be required during the undergraduate part of the program.

During Graduate Studies

After successful completion of the undergraduate program, students will be eligible to take the second year of the M.S. in CMB curriculum. At this point, students will be treated as graduate students for purposes of tuition and fees, financial aid, etc.

  • Students must complete an internship (or research). This could be completed during the summer immediately following the undergraduate program or during the graduate year.

Graduation Without Completion of the Program

If a student decides at some point to pursue only the undergraduate portion of the combined degree, the Department of Cell and Molecular Biology will still recognize the graduate courses taken in lieu of undergraduate courses. Credit from the undergraduate degree cannot be used toward a graduate degree at a later date.

Suggested Order of Coursework

Year One

Fall Semester:

Winter Semester:

CMB 155 - Introduction to Cell and Molecular Biology (3 credits)

CMB 156 - Discoveries in Cell and Molecular Biology: A Research-Based Laboratory Course (1 credit)

CHM 116 - Principles of Chemistry II (5 credits)

CHM 115 - Principles of Chemistry I (4 credits)

MTH 123 - Trigonometry (3 credits)

MTH 122 - College Algebra (3 credits)

STA 215 - Introductory Applied Statistics (3 credits)

General education elective (3 credits)

General education elective (3 credits)


15 credits


14 credits

Year Two

Fall Semester:

Winter Semester:

BIO 375 - Genetics (3 credits)

CMB elective (3 credits)

BIO 376 - Genetics Laboratory (1 credit)

PHY 220 - General Physics I (5 credits)

CMB 250 - Introduction to Biotechnology (4 credits)

CHM 242 - Organic Chemistry For Life Sciences II (4 credits)

CHM 241 - Organic Chemistry For Life Sciences I (5 credits)

CMB 409 - Responsible Conduct of Research (1 credit)

MTH 125 - Survey of Calculus (3 credits)

General education elective


15 credits


16 credits

Year Three

Fall Semester:

Winter Semester:

CHM 461 - Biochemistry I (4 credits)

CHM 462 - Techniques in Biochemistry (3 credits)

PHY 221 - General Physics II (5 credits)

CMB 405 - Cell and Molecular Biology (4 credits)

CMB 451 - Bioinformatics: Tools and Techniques for Life Scientists (3 credits)

CMB 406 - Cell and Molecular Biology Laboratory (2 credits)

Two general education electives (6 credits)

CMB 499 - Research in Cell and Molecular Biology (1 to 3 credits)


15 credits


15 credits

Year Four

Fall Semester:

Winter Semester:

CMB 626 - Advanced Research Applications in Nucleic Acids (4 credits)

CMB 506 - Advanced Molecular Biology (3 credits)

CMB 610 - Foundations of Biotechnology (3 credits)

CMB 495 - Perspectives in Cell and Molecular Biology (3 credits)

CMB 501 - Scientific Communication for the Life Sciences and Professional Science Masters (3 credits)

CMB 552 - Computer Modeling of Biomolecules (3 credits)

Two general education electives (6 credits)

Two general education electives (6 credits)


15 credits


15 credits

Year Four

Summer Semester:

PSM 691 - Internship (1 to 9 credits)


4 credits

Year Five

Fall Semester:

Winter Semester:

CMB 505 - Advanced Cell Biology (3 credits)

CMB 620 - Cell Culture and Bioprocessing (3 credits)

CIS 661 - Introduction to Health and Bioinformatics (3 credits)

PSM 650 - Ethics and Professionalism in Applied Science (3 credits)

STA 622 - Statistical Methods for Biologists (3 credits)

PSM 662 - Seminar in Professional Science Practice (2 credits)


11 credits


8 credits

Total Credits: 143

Note that all undergraduate general education requirements will be fulfilled.

Undergraduate credits that count toward B.S.

105 credits

Graduate credits that count toward B.S.

3 credits

Graduate credits that count toward B.S. and M.S.

12 credits

Graduate credits that count toward M.S.

23 credits

Undergraduate courses

105 credits

Graduate courses

38 credits

Click here for the program description.

If you are in need of assistance please submit any questions or comments.